The Beaumont Police Department delivered some sad news to their social media followers on January 26th. A much-beloved former member of the force had passed away.
K9 unit Hutch had been a member of their department for 10 years before his passing.
He was retired at the time of his death.
A life of service
Like most police dogs, Hutch was born in Belgium. A year and a half after his birth on March 13, 2008, he began his time with the Beaumont Police Department as a dual-purpose police dog. Dual-purpose K9s are trained for both detection work and protection work.
According to the department’s Facebook post on the sad news, “Hutch enjoyed a long and successful career removing drugs and criminals from the streets with his keen sense of smell. Hutch was a loyal partner and dedicated protector. Hutch officially retired on May 13, 2019, and spent his retirement with his handler, Officer Revia.”
A sudden death
The post also reported that Hutch became ill suddenly and was rushed to the veterinarian hospital.
At the age of 12 (almost 13!) Hutch passed away with his handler, Officer Jay Revia, at his side.
While he lived a nice, long life despite his dangerous job, and was clearly surrounded by people who loved him and appreciated his service, both the family and the department are mourning his loss.
The sad news travels
Despite being regional news, the Beaumont Police Department’s post has spread far and wide over the last few weeks with thousands “voicing” their support with Facebook acknowledgments and hundreds commenting on the news. Over 400 people have shared the post themselves.
Many strangers sent along their best wishes – and so did a few old friends.
“RIP~K9 Hutch was part of the academic curriculum in Criminal Justice Presentations at the University by demonstrating His skills to CJ students. My condolences,” wrote retired professor Dr. Tom Noyola.
Others recalled meeting the dog during his outreach events:
“Oh I am so so sorry to hear this! My daughter and I got to meet Hutch and Officer Revia when she photographed them for a Texas PTA Reflections contest that was titled “Heroes Among Us”. Their picture hangs on our wall. We were so impressed with both. The mutual love and respect between the two of them was profound. So thankful to both of them for their service to our great city.”
Bravery and sacrifice
K9 units receive elite training and undertake great risks. But they’re also very proud dogs – and they have extremely close relationships with their handlers, who they typically live with after hours.
Plenty of readers understood the pain Officer Revia and his family were likely going through:
“Hardest thing is to say goodbye, especially when it is all of a sudden. These k9 dogs are much more than family…”
By all accounts, Hutch lived a good life. Thirteen years is usually the top of the age range for German Shepherds and it sounds like he was largely healthy until the very end.
Rest in peace, Hutch.
Be sure to scroll down below to see the news story on Hutch’s passing.
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