Much-loved fire dog passes on at grand old age of 14, receives honorary funeral

As early as the 17th century, the “fire dog” has played an important role in fire stations. To this day, many instances of brave dogs saving lives have been documented. It is only fitting that a fire station’s loyal mascot is given an honorary funeral after passing on.  

A Chilean fire station’s loyal mascot, called Negro, sadly passed on at the grand old age of 14. After serving more than a decade at the Iquique fire station, the beloved canine passed away peacefully.

All the firefighters and crew who knew Negro were heartbroken that he would no longer be there to greet them in the morning, comfort them with his presence, or make them smile after an exhausting firefighting session.

The black dog with a big heart was going to be sorely missed.

The fire station arranged a special funeral with an honorary salute, and bestowed the prestigious posthumous title of “Honorary Firefighter” to Negro.

“In memory of our Negro,” the fire department announced publicly.

“We said goodbye in a very emotional ceremony because we were saying goodbye to one of our own, who was an important part of this company,” Fire Captain Jorge Tapia said.

Negro’s body was carried in a small custom-built white casket. He was buried on a plot near the fire station. Firefighters planted a tree in his memory.

These Chilean firefighters have the right idea. Their loyal canine that had made their day, every day, with his unconditional devotion, was given a memorable tribute.

This kind of tribute instills a sense of appreciation for the canines that have been, and are still, such an integral part of fire stations in their service to the public, and to the firefighters, throughout the ages.

Many a heart was moved by Negro’s funeral, and people have been calling on other fire stations to continue to recognize dogs as their official mascots.

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