‘Piper the Airport Dog’ passes away after battle with cancer

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TRAVERSE CITY, Mich. — One of Michigan’s favorite dogs passed away Wednesday evening.

Piper, who was a viral sensation, died following a year-long battle with prostate cancer. His handler, Brian Edwards posted on Instagram the Border Collie passed away in his arms.

Piper was adopted by Edwards in 2012 and started working at the Cherry Capital Airport in January 2015. His job was to chase birds off the runway.

However, Piper didn’t just spend time on the ground. In 2016, he completed his first skydive in Suffolk, Virginia.

Prior to his death on Wednesday, Edwards says Piper enjoyed a fun day playing soccer and spending time with loved ones. He also says the dog “chased one last snowy owl as he sailed into the night.”

View this post on Instagram

Friends, . It is with the ultimate sadness I must report the passing of my best friend and love of my life. . Piper passed away tonight peacefully in my arms after fighting a year-long battle with prostate cancer. He fought valiantly, and we did everything we could, but sometimes life just has to take its course. . Today, Piper enjoyed a pain-free day, filled with love from family and friends, mostly his fellow airport employees. He played soccer, got some much deserved butt scratches and yes, he chased away one last snowy owl as he sailed into the night. . As I hope was plainly evident, we are grateful. Grateful to have done what we loved for three years and had a whole hell of a lot of fun doing it. Mostly though, we're grateful for all of your support. It's what's really helped us through the dark days. . As we leave you tonight, know that Piper is in a better place. I only ask for your patience as I take time to tend to my shattered heart. . Lastly, as a final act of true class, the flag you see here draped over Piper’s body flew today at @uscg Air Station Traverse City and was taken down, folded and presented to us as a token of their love. Please join me in thanking the men and women, past and present, of Air Station Traverse City for their awesomeness. Piper and I are forever in your debt. . With love, . Brian & Piper

A post shared by K-9 Piper (@airportk9) on


Following Piper’s death on Wednesday, Brian was presented with a flag from the U.S. Coast Guard Air Station in Traverse City.

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