Top of the Ticket

Political commentary from Andrew Malcolm

« Previous Post | Top of the Ticket Home | Next Post »

Heroes on the Hill: Congressional dogs are honored

It did not get a lot of media ink, but hey, that's a dog's life.

Still, for those honored last week at the Humane Society's Congressional Canine Honors, it was only slightly less august than the Westminster Dog Show.

For starters,  Army Spc. Justin Rollins and his dog Hero were honored along with Marine Cpl. Dustin Lee and his dog Lex. Both had been killed in combat, and their families -- with an assist from Rep. Walter Jones (R-N.C.) and Rep. Paul Hodes (D-N.H.) -- were able to bring the dogs back to the United States and adopt them.

As Jerome Lee said at the awards ceremony, the 8-year-old bomb-sniffing Lex, a German shepherd, was at Dustin Lee's side March 21, 2007, when the Marine was killed by a rocket propelled grenade. Shrapnel from the explosion buried itself in Lex's back and side, and he nearly lost his tail.

They spent so much time together, training and getting ready for their mission. Dustin loved Lex and Lex loved Dustin. To have a part of Dustin back from the Marine Corps has really helped our family.

Then House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-Md.), usually a sober-faced guy, grew nostalgic as he eulogized his beloved English springer spaniel. Charlotte, who had her own bed in Hoyer's office, passed away in 2007 at the age of 15, nine years after Hoyer's wife died. As he said:

God invented dogs for us, to give us the kind of uncompromising love that human beings need, and we in turn give them the same kind of love.

There were plenty of other heart-melting moments at the ceremony, too, thanks to the first-ever Congressional Photo Contest.

Georgie, a 14-year-old schnauzer, won Best Campaigner for her work marching in parades for Rep. Gerry Connolly (D-Va.).

6a00e54fa1b0a188340105372068e9970b2


Hoover, who lives with Rep. Mark Souder (R-Ind.), won Barker of the House.

6a00e54fa1b0a188340111685af762970c2


As for the new Senate Pawjority Leader, she's a girl, Lucy, who hangs out in the offices of Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.)

6a00e54fa1b0a188340111685af79e970c2

Rising Political Star went to Jake, in the office of Rep. Ed Whitfield (R-Ky.)

6a00e54fa1b0a1883401053720401b970b2

Elder Statesdog honors went to Camembert, in the office of Rep. Ed Whitfield (R-Ky.).

6a00e54fa1b0a188340111685af6c4970c2

Finally, Best Briefed honors went to Como, in the office of Rep. Charlie Melancon (D-La.).

6a00e54fa1b0a18834010537203fa9970b2

As for the prize: dog biscuits and a plaque with a quotation from President Harry S. Truman: "If you want a friend in Washington, get a dog."

Bark at us by registering here for Twitter alerts on each new Ticket item. RSS feeds are available over here. And we're now on Kindle as well.

-- Johanna Neuman

Photo credits: Humane Society of the United States

 
Comments () | Archives (1)

The comments to this entry are closed.

" If you need a friend in Washington, get a dog!"
- Harry Truman


Connect

Recommended on Facebook


Advertisement

In Case You Missed It...

About the Columnist
A veteran foreign and national correspondent, Andrew Malcolm has served on the L.A. Times Editorial Board and was a Pulitzer finalist in 2004. He is the author of 10 nonfiction books and father of four. Read more.
President Obama
Republican Politics
Democratic Politics


Categories


Archives
 



Get Alerts on Your Mobile Phone

Sign me up for the following lists: