SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WGGB) – Not many people hold a contest to name their dog, but that’s exactly what the Springfield Police Department did when it came to the two new K-9 officers joining the force.
Fifth graders at Sabis International Charter School were asked to write an essay about the name they thought should go to one of the dogs and why. Then they chose their winners. One was Alexis Johnson.
” I thought of the name Chase, because they chase the criminals down,” Alexis explained.
The other contest winner was Ailani Brace, she picked the name Ares from Greek mythology and told us why. “Well it’s because it’s a symbol of strength, and if my name got picked I wanted the name to sound strong.”
For the staff at Sabis it was more than a contest, it was an opportunity to learn as well.
“I want the children to know that the police are here to help them and it’s an opportunity for them to know that we’re united and it’s a partnership. And what an awesome thing to get to name the two K-9 officers,” exclaimed Karen Reuter, Director of Sabis International.
Naming these K-9 officers was a huge honor for the 5th graders that won the essay contest, but it’s also very important for the Springfield Police Department. Those K-9 officers can’t start training without a name. But more than that, these K-9s will now adopt Sabis International as their school.
“The name is all important because that’s all they hear during training,” said Springfield Sergeant John Delaney. He added, “throughout their career, they’re going to be in service for the next 10-11 years with this dog. They’re going to come to Sabis every week, do K-9 demonstrations and be part of the security of this school.”
Chase and Ares received their names just in time. They begin their training on Monday.