NDPD loses one of its own
One of the Newberg-Dundee Police Department's canine officers died unexpectedly in late September, leaving behind a legacy of service to the community.
Ruka, an 8-year-old Labrador retriever, died Sept. 28 after serving the department since 2015 as its narcotics detection K9.
"Yesterday, we lost our sweet girl, 'Ruka,' our narcotics detection K9," NDPD wrote in a Facebook post Sept. 29. "She developed an unexpected medical issue and as much as we fought to save her, it was not to be."
Ruka joined NDPD in 2015 and was paired with Sergeant Ryan Simmons throughout her career. That included more than 300 deployments, contributing to the seizure of pounds of methamphetamine, recovering stolen firearms and having been responsible for more than 100 arrests, according to NDPD.
"Not bad for a sweet little dog who would never hurt a fly," NDPD wrote in the Facebook post. "Our hearts go out to Sgt. Simmons for the loss of his Frisbee-loving family member and we will all miss her."
Ruka was part of the NDPD's K9 team, which is comprised of three canine handlers assigned to the department's patrol division, as well as a supervisor. The trio of handlers are responsible for the same duties as other patrol officers, in addition to their K9 duties.
Ruka underwent five weeks of initial training and was certified through the Oregon Police Canine Association and the California Narcotics Canine Association to detect the odors of heroin, meth and cocaine.
"Such a heartbreaking loss," Facebook user Jocelyn Simpson wrote, one of more than 100 comments on the post announcing Ruka's passing. "I'm so sorry Sgt Simmons and fellow officers. My thoughts and prayers are with you. RIP sweet Ruka, you are a hero and will be greatly missed."
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