West Valley police department mourning death of retired, heroic K9
PHOENIX – A West Valley police department is mourning the loss of a retired K9 unit known for his heroism.
Buckeye police announced Monday that Ivan, a Belgian Malinois, died Saturday. He was 14.
“While I am sad at the death of Ivan, I am comforted knowing he was an integral part of helping keep the citizens of Buckeye safe for many years,” Chief Larry Hall said in a press release.
In 2013, Ivan was shot while apprehending a bank robbery suspect and protecting his handler and other officers on the scene.
He returned to work two weeks later and was honored with a Purple Heart by the Buckeye City Council.
In 2011, Ivan took first place in narcotics detection at the Desert Dog K9 Trials.
Ivan served seven years as a patrol and narcotics K9 for the department before retiring in 2014.
He lived out his life as a member of his handler’s family.