Night Shift

With my new job, hours are taking me later into the evening, which is a totally new experience for me. I’m not fond of the hours, but you do what you’ve got to do. Without getting too sappy or dramatic, I do think about our deployed dog handlers, as well as all of the other men and women working in harm’s way many times throughout the day. When I saw these photos of the handlers working at all hours of day and night, and knowing how exhausted I am from just a little tweak in my schedule, it makes me respect what they do even more.

Here are a couple of photos of Marine buddy Chris and his MWD Lucca working in Al Qadasiyah and Diwaniyah, Iraq (both photos taken by Sr.A Eric Harris).

U.S. Marine Corps Staff Sgt. Chris Willingham, attached to Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 2nd Special Troops Battalion, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division, directs his dog Lucca, a military working dog, to search a car parked near an Iraqi election site for explosives in Diwaniyah, Iraq, Jan. 30, 2009. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Eric Harris/Released)
U.S. Marine Corps Staff Sgt. Chris Willingham, attached to Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 2nd Special Troops Battalion, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division, directs his dog Lucca, a military working dog, to search a car parked near an Iraqi election site for explosives in Diwaniyah, Iraq, Jan. 30, 2009. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Eric Harris/Released)
U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Francis from Offutt Air Force Base, Neb., and his military working dog, Z, search abandoned lots in Bacharia, Iraq, Dec. 17, 2008, as part of a joint search of the community conducted by 4th Squadron, 5th Cavalry Regiment, 2nd Brigade, 1st Infantry Division. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Daniel Owen/Released)
U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Francis from Offutt Air Force Base, Neb., and his military working dog, Z, search abandoned lots in Bacharia, Iraq, Dec. 17, 2008, as part of a joint search of the community conducted by 4th Squadron, 5th Cavalry Regiment, 2nd Brigade, 1st Infantry Division. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Daniel Owen/Released)
U.S. Soldiers and a military working dog provide command control during a security halt while conducting operations in the Multi-National Division (South-East) area of responsibility in Basra, Iraq, July 31, 2008. DoD photo by Pfc. Rhonda Roth-Cameron, U.S. Army. (Released)
U.S. Soldiers and a military working dog provide command control during a security halt while conducting operations in the Multi-National Division (South-East) area of responsibility in Basra, Iraq, July 31, 2008. DoD photo by Pfc. Rhonda Roth-Cameron, U.S. Army. (Released)
Timmy and Chay, military working dogs, strike as a team to take down U.S. Navy Petty Officer 1st Class Sergio Sandoval, during nighttime double dog aggression training June 18, 2008, Joint Base Balad, Iraq. Sandoval is assigned as a dog handler to the 332nd Expeditionary Security Forces Squadron, Detachment 1. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Julianne Showalter/Released)
Timmy and Chay, military working dogs, strike as a team to take down U.S. Navy Petty Officer 1st Class Sergio Sandoval, during nighttime double dog aggression training June 18, 2008, Joint Base Balad, Iraq. Sandoval is assigned as a dog handler to the 332nd Expeditionary Security Forces Squadron, Detachment 1. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Julianne Showalter/Released)

Checking empty lots in Iraq are USAF handler SSgt. Francies from Offett AFB with a photo taken by SrA Daniel Owen.

Also, working late are dog teams photographed by Pfc. Rhona Roth-Cameron in Basra. (No name was included for the dog or handler.)

In the last photo MWDs Timmy and Chay take a bite out of Navy handler, USNavy Petty Officer 1st Class Sergio Sandoval in a training exercise.(Photo by Sr.A Julianne Showalter.)

Our thoughts and prayers go out to these handlers and their dogs as they face down the demons of the night for all of us.

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