LONDON (AP) — A U.S. Marine Corps dog that sniffed out explosives and protected thousands of troops has been honored with a prize for animals serving bravely in military conflict.
Lucca, a 12-year-old German Shepherd, won the Dickin Medal, the animal equivalent of the Victoria Cross, a decoration for bravery. She is the first U.S. Marine Corps dog to receive the honor.
Lucca is credited with saving thousands of allied troops and never had a human casualty on one of her patrols. On her final patrol in Afghanistan, she discovered a 30-pound (13.6-kilogram) improvised explosive device and was searching for more when a second device detonated. Lucca lost her left leg, but survived.
— PDSA (@PDSA_HQ) April 5, 2016
Her owner, Gunnery Sergeant Christopher Willingham of Tuscaloosa, Alabama, was by her side Tuesday in London as she received the medal.
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