Firefighters in the Chilean city of Iquique put their lives on the line every day for the town, but it’s their love gesture to a four-legged member of their crew who died this week that has made national headlines.
For more than ten years, this beautiful dog named Negro has lived with first responders from the Iquique Fire Department. As a station dog, he kept an eye on things when firefighters were dispatched on calls and was there to greet them with a wagging tail when they returned. The dog’s cheerful presence undoubtedly helped to relieve the stress of people around him while they went about their frequently risky duties, and it made the long lengths of silence more delightful in between.
Negro’s years of service had unfortunately come to an end. After a period of deteriorating health, the loyal dog died on Tuesday at the age of 14. “This afternoon, one of our ranks – our four-legged firefighter – left the earth,” the fire service stated online. “We appreciate all the years you’ve spent with us. We will remember you for the rest of our lives.”
Nevertheless, Negro’s coworkers went above and beyond to show their appreciation. Board members of the department decided to go the extra mile by giving the dog the title of “honorary fireman” and the final respects that come with it.
In order to bid farewell to the beloved dog, the fire department organized a funeral for the guard of honor.
“Negro was a member of our family. According to Soyiquique.cl’s fire chief Jorge Tapia (Jorge Tapia), he is respected and admired. “We said our final goodbyes in a very emotional ceremony since we were saying goodbye to one of our own, who was a vital part of our company.” And, as the dog’s casket was taken out, accompanied by his coworkers, it was clear how important he was to them.
In the evening, Negro’s body was buried not far from the site where he had served so faithfully. His memory was also honored by the planting of a tree.
While this fire station dog undoubtedly touched the hearts of everybody who knew him personally throughout their many years together, Negro’s legacy will live on via this week’s act of respect and love paid to him – a fitting tribute to a beautiful pup: