MODESTO (CBS13) — There’s a new K-9 officer in town and he’s honoring an Airman that died while fighting for his country.
On Thursday, the Modesto Police Canine Association announced their newest K-9 team: Officer Ryan Vander Tuig and K-9 Joker.
Joker, a Dutch Shepard born in Holland, will turn two in October. He and officer Vander Tuig recently passed the State certification process and have started working together.
According to the Canine Association, the addition of Joker and Vander Tuig increased the number of working K-9 teams to five, and another officer is currently waiting to be matched with their K-9.
The funds to purchase Joker were donated by Richard and Kathy, parents of US Airman Justin who was killed by a terrorist bombing in Saudi Arabia.
The Canine Association said that Richard and Kathy donated the funding in honor of Justin. They also named K-9 Joker after Justin’s ability to make others laugh.