There is a push right now for an Idaho memorial that would honor police K9's who have lost their lives in the line of duty. There have been four in the state, including Jardo from the Boise Police Department in November, 2016. Most of the funds have been raised for the memorial, but it still has no home.
On any given day about 100 police K9's serve Idaho communities. Joe Andreoli, with the Boise Police Department, says the dogs are incredible.
"From helping us keep drugs off the street, to helping us apprehend dangerous suspects, to literally taking bullets for officers. That has happened in more than one occasion in this state, including right here in the Treasure Valley," said Andreoli.
Four dogs have died in the line of duty in Idaho. Andreoli is the local Fraternal Order of Police president. He served alongside the last K9 killed.
"Jardo was one of my partners," said Andreoli.
In November, 2016, Jardo ran toward a suspect in Boise who was shooting at officers. He was shot and died from his injuries. Andreoli says the push to have a memorial for fallen K9's started soon after Jardo's death.
"It was a shock to me, it was a shock to most officers, that we don't have a K9 memorial," said Andreoli.
There have been several fundraisers to raise the money needed for a memorial. Andreoli says they have it pretty much covered now with about $24,000. In fact, the sculpture is nearly done.
"It's a memorial and it's going to be a treasured memorial for this state for a long time to come," said Andreoli.
The problem is the memorial has nowhere to call home. It was created with a place in mind, however. Andreoli says the Idaho Peace Officers' Memorial in Meridian is the perfect place.
"That's where they should be honored next to their human partners," said Andreoli.
Unfortunately, Andreoli says those plans recently fell through. He says the Idaho Peace Officers' Board decided against it. So now, the location search continues to memorialize our state's four legged heroes.
Idaho Peace Officers' Memorial Board President Sheldon Kelley tells us there is still a possibility they could approve the K9 memorial. Organizers aren't holding their breath though. Again, they're looking for a site. If you have any suggestions you are urged to reach out to organizers. You can email Andreoli at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The money has been raised for the memorial, but more money is being collected to maintain the memorial once it has a home and is in place. There will also be a fundraiser on April 9 at Nutrishop in Boise.