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Coast Guard Celebrates K-9 Memorial at Base Alameda

The Coast Guard hosted a ribbon cutting and official dedication of a memorial to its miliary service dogs on K-9 Veterans Day.
2023 k9 memorial
Jen Fyke Web
by Jennifer Crowley Fyke
March 31, 2023

The Coast Guard hosted a ribbon cutting and official dedication of a memorial to its miliary service dogs on K-9 Veterans Day.

Members from the Coast Guard Pacific Area, Base Alameda, Maritime Safety and Security Team San Francisco, and representatives from the Jack Ayre Trust, the Coast Guard Foundation, and the Chief Petty Officers Association Golden Gate Chapter attended the March 13 event.

"From Mal to the most recent K-9s etched in stone, we are honored to have this memorial to commemorate these special animals' service, loyalty, dedication, courage, and sacrifice," said Lt. Diane French, executive officer of Maritime Safety and Security Team San Francisco.

2023 good dog
The new memorial will be a place where our Coastie K-9s will forever be remembered and honored for their service and sacrifice.

The Coast Guard K-9 memorial is dedicated to Seaman First Class Jack Ayre, a Coast Guard member who served in World War II as a member of the beach patrol, a critical mission to protect America's shores against German and Japanese spies who attempted to land ashore from submarines positioned along the East Coast. Ayre's patrol companion was a German shepherd named Mal, who, as a military working dog, accompanied him on assignments from the Coast Guard's Rehoboth Beach Lifeboat Station in Delaware.

Describing the Coast Guard's working military dogs as our "four-legged force-multipliers, and in many ways, our best friends," Vice Admiral Andrew Tiognson, commander of the Coast Guard’s Pacific Area, shared that Seaman First Class Jack Ayre's dog Mal "represents loyalty, faithfulness, and dedication…a direct link to our service's core values of honor, respect, and devotion to duty."

2023 k9 memorial ribbon cutting
U.S. Coast Guard photos by Petty Officer 3rd Class Hunter Schnabel.

“We are grateful for our many supporters and the leadership from our Board of Directors and Trustees in building this monument to the service's unsung heroes," said Susan Ludwig, Coast Guard Foundation president. "It is truly inspiring to see this partnership build into a community that honors the Coast Guard's K-9s and their handlers."

Coast Guard K-9s and their 80+ years of service to the Coast Guard and Nation.