We are so excited to introduce this new blog series to you entitled, Hero Dogs. Minna and Sully’s grandpa (otherwise known as Thad Abel, Shelli’s husband, or Erica and Jessica’s dad) will bring you delightful and heartwarming stories of hero dogs, both past and present. We hope you enjoy this first post!
Part I: Stubby Finds a Home
This year marks the 100th year anniversary of the end of World War I and I think it is appropriate for my first dog hero blog to be about a real-life war hero. So, I have selected a dog named “Sergeant” Stubby who served with the American Expeditionary Forces in Europe during WWI. I hope you will enjoy reading about Stubby as much as I have enjoyed researching his story!
Stubby was appropriately named because he had stubby ears, stubby legs and a stubby tail. Stubby wasn’t a very handsome dog but don’t let looks fool you! Minna and the Canine Club will tell you that it is more important to be who you are on the inside then what you look like on the outside. Stubby was a tough, smart, brave and athletic dog! We do not know who Stubby’s parents were, which in dog terms means that his pedigree is unknown, but he does resemble a bull terrier.
For five years Stubby was homeless meandering the country side of Connecticut. Stubby spent many days and nights cold and hungry until one day a group of Army soldiers took him into their barracks. Yes, Stubby was a rescue dog! The soldiers not only rescued Stubby but as you will soon find out Stubby rescued the soldiers! The soldiers were part of the First Connecticut Regiment and were training at Yale University. Just when Stubby thought that he had finally found a home, the United States Government called on the regiment to serve in the war. The soldiers boarded the ship at Newport News, Virginia heading to France. Stubby followed the regiment, but the officials would not allow him to board the ship. One of the men, Corporal J. Robert Conroy, felt sorry for Stubby and snuck him inside his coat and told Stubby to be really quiet. Stubby didn’t make a peep and he was successfully smuggled in. At that moment Stubby officially became a member of the U.S. Army! This also began a life-long relationship between Stubby and Corporal Conroy. On the way to France Stubby became a popular stowaway and even learned to salute by placing his paw on his eyebrow! That’s all for now but make sure you read next week’s blog as we conclude the exciting story of Stubby, Part II: “Stubby Becomes a War Hero”
(The facts of the story were taken from an article written in the New York Times on April 4, 1926)