Memorial drive to honor war dogs and their handlers

I am proud to help promote an effort that I strongly believe in. A fundraising campaign is now underway that will impact two subject areas that many of you already know I am very passionate about - our military and canines. The campaign is to raise funds in order to place a War Dog Memorial at the Kent County Veterans Memorial Park in Dover. When finished, it will be located next to the UH-1 “Huey” helicopter which was dedicated last year.
Jeff Spiegelman Jeff Spiegelman
The effort was kicked off at the annual fundraiser for Kent County Vietnam Veterans of America-Chapter 850 last month. At the dinner, chapter officials unveiled the photograph that will be used as the template for the memorial. According to Ken Bodine, who heads up the organization’s memorial committee, the memorial is to honor “all generations of war dogs and their handlers.” The picture being used is a photograph that was recently taken at Dover Air Force Base of dog handler, Staff Sgt. Jason Spangenberg, and his war dog, Rico. The picture will reportedly be etched into a 5-foot black granite stone by Lloyd Memorials of Dover with the inscription on the stone to read: “They protected and watched over us at home and on the field of battle. We are forever grateful for their undying loyalty, devotion, and faithful service. They are not forgotten.” According to Chapter 850 President Joe Startt, Jr., “This is not only a tribute to the highly trained K-9s that have saved so many lives, but is also a recognition of their handlers from all branches and in all conflicts. We’re especially pleased that this poster, created and donated by Dover’s Signs by Tomorrow, highlights our current veterans and their outstanding service.” Chapter 850 officials also tout Sgt Spangenberg’s military service, as well as Rico’s, stating that the two have completed multiple tours in Afghanistan and “earned a Bronze Star Medal for their work in finding IEDs (improvised explosive devices) that saved the lives of fellow service members.” A dedication ceremony of the memorial is being planned by Chapter 850 during the July 1-5 visit of the Vietnam “Wall that Heals” to the Veterans Memorial Park. Please visit my Facebook page at to see the photo that will be used as the template for the War Dog Memorial. To make a contribution to this effort, please make your check payable to Kent County Chapter 850 with “war dog” in the memo area and mail it to VVA Chapter 850, c/o Ken Bodine, P.O. Box 1718 Dover, DE 19903. Feel free to send an email to for additional information, as well.

State Rep. Jeff Spiegelman R-Clayton 11th District

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