STAUNTON, Va. (WVIR) - On Monday, the Staunton Sheriff’s Office announced the arrival of its new K-9 deputy, and she’s a puppy. They are looking to Staunton’s Elementary students to help name her.
It’s been four months since K-9 Deputy Cara died tragically while attempting to find a gun someone had thrown out of their car. She is missed by many, but the Sheriff’s Office is ready to build on her legacy of helping other agencies.
The cute little black lab is just six weeks old.
“With a face like that, I mean you can’t not love her,” said Sheriff’s Office K-9 handler Captain Ryan Insana.
She is tiny, but she has very big paws to fill.
“I’m very excited to get this new chapter started. You know, it’s been a tough four months for me,” said Insana, Cara’s handler. He lost her in December while they were working. “Everybody says... aw you know I have the best dog, but she really was. She was amazing,” said Insana.
The two were inseparable. “Come to work, she was with me at work. Go home, she’s with me at home. Go on vacation, she was with me on vacation,” stated Insana.
Cara was a trained explosives dog. “About 26 different odors that she could find,” said Insana. “Anywhere from gun power to TNT, C4, dynamite.” She could even find the residue of ammunition in firearms. “She’d found two guns that people had thrown out due to crimes.”
But Cara was also great with kids -- they loved her.
“We would be in a parade, or out somewhere. You’d hear people say, there’s Cara or there’s Cara,” said Staunton City Sheriff Matt Robertson.
This little lab, who comes from the same bloodline, will one day follow in Cara’s paw prints, but first, she needs a name. The choices are Liberty, Abby, and Sadie.
“I saw and heard the impact that her passing had on this community and the youth of this community,” stated Robertson. “I couldn’t think of a better way, a more fitting way to let the kids be a part of this.”
Cara was a special dog and will always be missed. “But I think this little one is gonna bring a lot of joy to us as well as the citizens,” said Robertson.
“Yeah, she’s, I think she’ll be special too,” said Insana. “But we’ll see, we’ll see.”
Each elementary student will get one vote for the name they like best. That will happen through the schools.