At 16 years old, the very last 9/11 rescue dog passes away

While dogs are the best friends anyone could ask for, there is one aspect of them that everyone despises more than anything else.

These four-legged angels will respect you regardless of who you are, and they will provide you with total companionship, respect, loyalty, and love; however, we must all accept the heartbreaking reality that these perfect friends will only be with us for a very short time.Perhaps this is why these animals are so amazing in the first place; if they lived longer, they might become cynical or opinionated.In any case, the best we can do is love them with all of our hearts and ensure that they are well cared for and respected while they are with us.

There comes a time when we must say our final goodbyes, and Denise Corliss knew this would be difficult.
She looked into the eyes of her beautiful golden retriever Bretagne after 16 years and realized that her best friend needed to go.But there’s something special about Bretagne that makes this farewell something in which every American should participate.The demise of Bretagne marks the end of an era.

Thank you to Jennifer Bauer of KPRC2 for filming this moving tribute.

Denise Corliss purchased Bretagne in 1999.The dog showed great promise in search and rescue, and after some intense training, the pair joined the proud ranks of Texas Task Force 1, a search and rescue group ready to search through rubble.

Corliss and Bretagne had been training and training, but no action seemed to be coming their way.
They had planned for hurricane season, but thankfully nothing disastrous had occurred.

That all changed on a bright blue September day.Her first rescue mission would take place in the aftermath of 9/11.

Texas Task Force 1 sprang into action as the twin towers fell in New York City.Corliss was completely overwhelmed when she first saw the horrific extent of the damage done.

Bretagne, on the other hand, knew her job and her responsibilities.She jolted her human awake, and the two set out on a wild hunt for any survivors trapped beneath the rubble.

In the days and weeks following 9/11, an estimated 300 other search and rescue dogs were present.Everyone was hoping to find just one more survivor.

The dogs, however, did more than save lives that day; they also saved souls.The mere presence of these dogs is said to have brought smiles to the faces of firemen, first responders, and rescue workers who had nothing to smile about during those trying times.They aided in the treatment of PTSD caused by the events and sights of those attacks, and for that alone we should be grateful.

Following 9/11, Bretagne assisted in the search and rescue efforts for a number of other disasters, including Hurricane Katrina and Hurricane Ivan.

She eventually left the action, but not before saving lives and making countless friends along the way.She stayed at home with her mother, Corliss, and retired comfortably.She was getting quite old for a dog her size, but she never stopped smiling and still enjoyed “searching” for things in the house.

But, only a few months before her 17th birthday, Bretagne stopped eating and appeared to be failing quickly.Her kidneys began to fail, and Corliss realized it was time to say goodbye to her best friend.

Bretagne was a hero during one of our country’s darkest times, but she was most importantly a friend to her human.Dogs come into our lives and stay for such a short time, but the impact they have on our spirits and hearts demonstrates how angelic they truly are.

Corliss decided to take her best friend to the vet one last time.But when they arrived, they witnessed something truly moving.

Bretagne was honored for her service by a group of firefighters.This group of men and women saluted Bretagne in one of the most emotional farewells you could ever see, just like any military funeral.

Corliss tried her hardest not to cry, but it was understandable that she did.
She’d been with Bretagne since she was a puppy, and they’d shared so many adventures together.
So saying goodbye to such a long-time and close friend and family member must have felt surreal.

We’re sorry for your loss, Denise Corliss.You and your dog were there to help people in their hour of need.This is truly the end of an era, and we can only hope that you find peace despite the loss of Bretagne.

While we are saddened by her death, we can’t help but be grateful that she was able to live such a long and interesting life in a home where she knew she was loved.

Thank you both for your contributions to our country!

Please watch Bretagne’s Last Walk and help us remember her.

Please SHARE this heartwarming story if you appreciate amazing dog and human rescue teams like Bretagne and Denise Corliss!