Woman Wants Military Burial For Dog

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WHITE LAKE, Mich- A woman in Metro-Detroit is upset, after her son’s army dog was denied burial at a military cemetery in Holly.

The Great Lakes National Cemetery says no dogs are allowed,  but June Etlinger says they should make an exception for her son’s black lab named Mina. The dog did 9 tours of duty in Afghanistan with Etlinger’s son, then later retired with an honorable discharge from the army. At the age of 13, Mina developed a serious lung ailment and had to be put down. Tonight, his family says he should be treated just like a soldier.

“My father is buried there and my grandmother and my grandfather are buried there.  It’s a beautiful cemetery and it’s an honorable cemetery, and I just feel that Mina deserves that as well,” says Etlinger.

For now, Mina’s remains are at an animal hospital while his family decides on what to do with them. His family says they plan to take the matter to Washington.

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  • TaxPayer

    if the family is willing to pay for the funeral then fine otherwise I know our tax dollars could be used to take care of surviving Vets, injured soldiers, etc. scatter his ashes over your sons grave if it means that much and water them down right away, its really not a big deal no need to waste thousands of $$$$ though…

  • female army vet

    I'd rather see my tax dollars sent on honoring a fellow veteran than a lot of other things that it is spent on.
    So what if he is a dog. He had to do a physical, he trained, he was part of a unit and served in combat. That's what we all did. He deserves a military funeral in a military cemetery same as I do.

  • Bonnie

    Why does everything have to be such a BIG to do???? For crying out loud!!! Dig up some of the earth above that solder and put that proud dog in with his master. He earned his spot there. It doesn't take a rocket scientist and it doesn't have to cost any money…get over the bureaucratic BS and just get on with it.. We make life sooooo difficult when really it's just so simple.

  • Karen

    Is it possible to have the dog cremated and bury the ashes w/the other family members. Maybe you could also put a plaque w/the dogs name and info on it. I hope the family does go to Washington with this matter. Military working dogs deserve much more recognition than they receive. The dog probably did more tours of duty than a lot of his human counterparts.

  • Susan

    I don't see anything in this article that indicates that the soldier is deceased. Am I missing something? The son isn't mentioned anywhere except as the soldier who toured with the dog. The mother says her father and grandparents are buried there, but doesn't mention her son. If she wants the dog buried there to be with her son someday, cremate the dog and save his ashes in an urn. Then, bury them with your son at a later date (hopefully much later) when he is buried there.

  • Jenn

    I for one think that it would be awesome if a cemetery would be set up for our four legged Vets. They deserve the honor for working hard and putting their lives on the line along side their humans. I think its time.

  • Deanna

    Service dogs deserve the same respect our service men and women receive. We had a K9 that got an official service at a "human" funeral home and there is nothing wrong with that. That dog more than earned the burial with honors.

  • David Landers DVM

    Mina and all the other military dogs should have a military burial. It would be simple to build a memorial and store their ashes to conserve space and funds. I'll bet if you ask any of their handlers they would agree.

  • Karen

    Simple. Cremate the dog, i do that anyway and spread his ashes at the cemetary. Problem solved. Why fight something so wrong right now, use that money and energy on dogs that are aiive. Name the new non profit you are going to start in this dogs name to save living dogs.

  • shalansamona

    Lets give the dog respect and not for get he did his servis for his country it would be nice if she piad for funerale i would donat

  • Glassy

    Let me know what night this spring, and lets go and do this ourselves. Like someone said above, our government spends big money on very wasteful things, and yet this great dog is more deserving of a military burial than about 95% of our politicians who have served our country. Serious.