South GA town pays respect to fallen K9 officer - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

South GA town pays respect to fallen K9 officer

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VIENNA, GA (WALB) -

Family, friends and law enforcement officers gathered in downtown Vienna to pay their respects to Castor, a fallen police officer.

The 10-year old Belgium Malaquois died on Veterans day after a hard fought battle with Lymphoma, fighting up until his last day

"He worked with me on Saturday, and he even did a couple of traffic stops with me, and Sunday he passed away," said Michael Smith, Castor's Handler.

Wednesday the decorated officer "Vienna 8" was given a police officer's farewell for his years of service and dedication.

His handler, Officer Michael Smith worked with Castor for seven years.

"He was more than just a dog, he was more like a best friend," said Michael Smith.

He worked narcotics in Warwick, and got tons of drugs off the streets.

But he was diagnosed with Lymphoma shortly after moving to Vienna so he spent much of his time going for cancer treatments.

He accomplished a lot on and off the field. 

"He taught me more than I could ever teach him," said Michael Smith.

He worked hard, and loved what he did.

"If we all could be as happy as he was man there would never be a dead end job in this country because we would all be so happy to go to work," said Michael Smith.

He was able to balance work and family.

"When he was at work he was all about business but when he came home he wants to play. He was always loyal to the end," said Michael Smith.

And He didn't let setbacks get him down.

"He had heartworms, he overcome that he had a viper get into his kennel he overcome that and he was able to fight up until his last day he was diagnosed," said Michael Smith.

Most importantly, Castor taught Smith and his family how much love a pet can provide.

"He was awesome he'd always play with us," said Michael Smith Jr., Son

Eventually Smith will get another K-9 that will serve and protect, but Castor will stay in his heart forever.

Smith says he will be getting another K-9 officer around Christmas time.

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