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Fictional Max isn't the only furry war hero. There are lots of real war veterans that have furry tails. And those war vets deserve to be memorialized and commemorated just like their human counterparts.
One of those dogs was named Buster, who has passed away at the age of 12. But Buster didn't leave the Earth without making quite an impact.
In his active years, Buster completed 5 tours in Afghanistan, Bosnia and Iraq. Will Barrow, an RAF (Royal Air Force) police sergeant, was lucky enough to have Buster as his partner overseas. As he said about him in an interview in June, "You hear people say that they would died for their friends but I don’t know many who’d actually do so. But Buster would." Barrow and Buster first bonded in 2007 when they were paired together for a tour in Afghanistan.
Corporal Lyons, a friend of Barrow's, recommended his own dog, Buster. Previously, Buster had done two tours in Bosnia with Lyons. Lyons believed that Buster had what it took to serve with Barrow in Afghanistan.
Buster had the perfect combination of loyalty and drive. To be a search dog in a war zone, especially in deserts, is brutal. The ideal dog is necessary because the temperatures climb and there are a lot of loud noises, which can unnerve a lot of dogs.
But Buster was the right fit. He was a bombs and explosives search dog. His reward for finding ammunition and grenades was simply a tennis ball to play with. But for Buster, the tennis ball was worth it.
With only five weeks of training, he was saving lives in Afghanistan. Buster sniffed out bombs on suicide bombers and found roadside bombs that saved Barrow's life and other soliders'.
Over his lifetime, Buster was credited with saving over 1000 lives. When Buster and Barrow separated back home, Barrow took him to run in a field one last time. Buster even scanned the field for bombs.
Buster had a great life, and hopefully if he's buried in a doggy coffin, there will be Britain's flag lying over it. Because he deserves it. Rest in peace, little soldier.