Friday, May 28, 2010

Chips the War Dog

It is an early summer morning, 1943 in Sicily. You are walking the perimeter of an U.S. encampment with the sentry dog, Chips. The enemy is nearby. Suddenly, from out of nowhere, a machine gun clatters into action. Bullets are whizzing past your head and you don't know where the nest is. Your dog breaks free.
You are lying on your face. Scared. The next bullet may end your life.
There is a commotion somewhere ahead. The machine gun stops, but the gunfire doesn't. You look into the distance. Has it been a few seconds or a minute since the firing began?
Your dog suddenly appears, with an Italian soldier in front of him with his hands up. The Italian looks petrified. A few moments later, the rest of the Italians, four in all come out of the hidden pillbox. They are taken prisoner.
Your dog comes to you. He has wounds about his head. Powder burns where they tried to shoot him. He wags his tail. All in a day's work master.

This is the story of Chips. Hours later, the dog helped capture ten more prisoners. Earlier during his tour of duty, the dog served as sentry for talks between Churchill and FDR. For his valor, Chips received a Distinguished Service Cross, a Purple Heart, and a Silver Star. These medals were later taken back when Chips and the rest of the K-9 corps serving were termed "equipment" rather than soldiers.
Chips died six months after his return to the States from complications from his wounds. He was six-years-old.

1 comment:

  1. Chips was incredible. He loved his friend. What a shame. People can become better human beings from the love of their dog companions.