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James Mellick: K9 War Stories (August 16, 2018 - October 28, 2018)

 

The K9 War Stories series is an exhibition of wooden dog sculptures created by master Ohio craftsman James Mellick. This series tells the real-life stories of military working dogs and their handlers who have sacrificed life and limb as K9 teams in battle. The soldier volunteers to be a dog handler while the military working dog signed up for nothing but finds reward, meaning, and purpose when doing its job and giving complete trust and dedication to its handler.  From the “leash up” the dog represents the courage, honor, faithfulness, and sacrifice of the soldier.

 

For this exhibit, three carved wooden dogs are on display alongside printed documentation such as emails and letters which describe the difficult real-life situations that the dog and their handler encountered together. K9 War Stories brings us into contact with mothers and fathers, husbands and wives, and sisters and brothers who know the pain of personal loss and trauma.  James Mellick recognizes the delicate balance of asking families to give up some privacy so that their story can be told. By sharing their stories, survivors know that they are not forgotten and not alone when fighting post-traumatic stress.

 

The dogs on display are Jajo R260, Cooper K154, and Deputy Alex. Jajo R260 and soldier Patrick Tutko are the very first in the K9 War Stories series, describing the bond and sacrifice of dog and handler together.  Cooper K154 and soldier Kory Weins are the second in the series.  Deputy Alex honors the K9s of law enforcement, fighting their own wars here at home to protect us.

 

On view August 16, 2018 - October 28, 2018

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