'You will not be forgotten' K9 Rocky's memorial service brings closure and healing
Police K9's lined up Wednesday as K9 Deputy Rocky's remains were carried into the Walker County Civic center so the community could honor Deputy Corey Griffin's partner and friend.
Rocky was partnered with Griffin for four years, Sheriff Steve Wilson said Rocky served the Walker County Sheriff's Office well.
"He was responsible for the seizure of a lot of narcotics and the apprehension of a lot of criminals," said Wilson.
It was July 6th when Rocky and Griffin were out serving an arrest warrant, when something triggered Rocky, causing him to bite and hold onto Griffin.
"Probably the worst fear that any K9 handler ever had come to fruition," said Wilson.
Fearing his own life was in danger, Griffin shot Rocky in order to save himself.
"Well he's very emotional, he's very distraught, and his partner had died and the fact that he was involved in the death he's beat himself up about it," said Wilson.
Wilson said Rocky and Griffin's bond was strong than just that of an owner and a pet.
"They're with the animal much longer, many more hours," said Wilson. "People are working with their animals, they train every week and they're with them 40 plus hours working."
They're committed to helping Griffin through his grief.
"Internally we will try to heal as best as we can, and we will try to support Corey as much as we can," said Wilson.
Griffin still has to heal physically, he's still recovering from the injury to his left arm.
"Initially in the emergency room they thought there might be some nerve damage so they want to rule that out," said Wilson.
And he and his family have to heal emotionally from losing more than just a dog.
"You know he's grieving right now he lost his buddy, his pet, his partner," said Wilson.
Deputy Griffin is still on medical leave and will be until the doctor releases him. Sheriff Wilson said he supports his deputy 100% and said there won't be a change in policy because this was just a tragic accident.
"It was just one of those freak things that happens, and how do you change procedures to know how something like this is going to happen and I just don't think you can," said Wilson.