The City of Nowata is continuing to grieve after a K9 officer was killed in the line of duty last week.
Several local groups, and even some groups from outside the country, are stepping up to help get a new K9 for the department.
It’s been one week since a semi hit and killed Smokey on Highway 169 after a woman opened the door and let him out of the vehicle.
“I came back to work this week and it’s just different not having him there in the back seat,” said Officer Jeramiah Frauenberger. “We were together 24/7…it’s hard to put into words.”
Since then, several groups have stepped up to help.
“I got a call at four in the morning, 10 a.m. in the UK, and they said, ‘We want to step up and make a huge donation,’” said Neil Pollard from Pro Dog International Training Center.
Pollard started training K9s in the UK in 1985 before retiring to Nowata. He works with 20 different Oklahoma law enforcement agencies. He also trained Smokey.
“I’m quite happy to put my hand in my pocket and help, but the UK groups have just said, ‘No, you’re not doing it, we’re doing it,’” said Pollard.
He says he will go pick up the puppy from a breeder in Kansas in the next few weeks.
In the meantime, Frauenberger will be working with one of Pollard’s dogs so they can continue to keep drugs off the streets.
“I mean, it’s going to take a little time getting used to a different dog,” said Frauenberger.
Even though it will be difficult to replace Smokey, they hope this will help the community move forward.
Services for Smokey will be held on Thursday afternoon in Nowata at Stumpff’s Funeral Home with burial to follow at Nowata Cemetery. The services are open to the public and several K9s and their handlers will be there in support.