‘Forever in your debt’: K-9 buried with full police honors after dying in line of duty

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More than 1,000 people and dozens of service dogs attended the funeral service last week for Kye, a 3-year-old Belgian German Shepherd that was stabbed to death by the suspect.

An Oklahoma City police dog killed while helping his partner catch a knife-wielding thief has been laid to rest with full honors.

Oklahoma City police officer Sgt. Ryan Stark leans over the casket of his canine partner, Kye, who died after being stabbed by a burglary suspect.
More than 1,000 people and dozens of service dogs attended the funeral service last week for Kye, a 3-year-old Belgian German Shepherd that was stabbed to death by the suspect.

Kye’s partner since serving on the police department’s K-9 unit, Sgt. Ryan Stark, shed tears and expressed a final farewell to the dog before his flag-draped coffin was buried and the canine was given out a 21-gun salute.

Stark then shot and killed the suspect. He currently is on administrative leave pending an internal investigation into the shooting, Nelson said. Kye died from his wounds the day after he was stabbed.

“Without question, Kye’s sacrifice saved the life of one of the officers. We will forever remain in your debt,” said Sgt. Coy Gilbert during the eulogy at the dog’s Aug. 28 service.

Oklahoma City police officer Sgt. Ryan Stark wipes away a tear following funeral services for his canine partner, Kye.

Although Nelson didn’t have an official estimate for how many people attended Kye’s service, he said the numbers easily surpassed 1,000. In addition to police officers and the general public, K-9 police dogs and their handlers from the region also attended the ceremony to pay their respects.

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