Shaw OSI Det runs in memory of late K-9

  • Published
  • By Wayne Amann
  • Air Force OSI Public Affairs
The bond among members of the law enforcement community is not only palpable, but at times memorable.

Just ask members of Office of Special Investigations Detachment 212 at Shaw Air Force Base, S.C. who joined local civilian authorities to honor a four-legged comrade killed in the line of duty.

On July 25 a group of detachment runners participated in a memorial 5K run/walk honoring the legacy of K9 deputy Fargo of the Richland County Sherriff's Department K9 Unit.

In 2011 6-year-old Fargo, a Belgian Malinois trained in narcotics detection, tracking and criminal apprehension, was tracking down armed robbery suspects when he was shot three times by one of them and died. He was the first K9 to lose his life in the line of duty in South Carolina history.

The event, held at The Plex at the Village at Sandhill in Richland County, is officially called the Guardians of the Night K-9 5K.

"It was a great event to go out for," said Det. 212 Special Agent Georgia Marshall. "Our detachment loves to support the local community and it was amazing to support something as important as law enforcement K-9 units."

Marshall, who runs 3 to 4 times each week, finished second in her age group category as did fellow Special Agent Derick Burgin. Bergin is an avid runner who encourages the detachment to join him in 5K races.

"The best part is we, as a detachment, are doing things like this," Marshall said. "Our det is building stronger bonds among agents, getting some exercise and having fun."

The event was created to raise funds to purchase items for the K-9 team including collars, leads, food, veterinarian care and a custom fit ballistic vest. The goal is to provide these dogs the best equipment and services available while they ensure families, homes and property are safe and secure.

The K9s varied missions are to find illegal drugs and get them off the streets, find missing adults and children, detect bombs and protect their handlers. They're able to run, chase and apprehend criminals in places too difficult for humans to navigate.

To accomplish these duties the Richland County K9 Unit employs 14 Belgian Malinois, one German Shepherd and one Dutch Shepherd.