Family determined to get proper soldier’s burial for military dog

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Fox 2 News Headlines

Mina served nine tours of duty in Afghanistan, was promoted to sergeant and retired with an honorable discharge from his service to the army. When the retired military hero passed away from a serious lung ailment June Etlinger wanted him to be buried at Great Lakes National Cemetery, a resting place for the nation’s military. When she asked the cemetery administration about a burial for Mina she was told a canine burial was not allowed. Now Etlinger is determined to get Mina the proper soldier’s burial he deserves.

Etlinger’s son Sergeant Corey McCourt served three tours with Mina, a black lab. Mina would find bombs and McCourt would disarm them. When Mina received his honorable discharge McCourt wanted the best for him. “He just wanted him to have a good life the last couple of years of his life, and he let him do whatever he wanted to do because he earned it,” Etlinger says.

McCourt is currently serving, so when Mina became ill and had to be put down Etlinger took on the duty of arranging his final resting place. Great Lakes National Cemetery in Holly, Michigan seemed like the logical choice for Etlinger. “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,” she said.

When she inquired with the Great Lakes cemetery administration she was told a canine burial wasn’t possible. “I don’t think he’s ever been asked that question before, so he was kind of like no, we don’t do that here,” she said. Etlinger and her family aren’t giving up though, they believe Mina should be treated just like the soldier that he was. Her next step is to call Washington. “I have a phone number in Washington. That was going to be my next step was to call Washington,” she said. “He may be a dog, but he’s a soldier and he deserves it.”

23 thoughts on “Family determined to get proper soldier’s burial for military dog”

  1. Why, if he was promoted to sargent and retired with an honorable discharge, would they not consider him a soldier? I mean, it’s not like EVERYONE will want their dog buried in a military cemetary for goodness sake!

    I would think that this cemetary would be honored to do this not only for the dog, family but the country that he served.

    What a shame.

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    • Yes I had a hamster who was in the military. He was buried at Arlington. I’ll never forget that beautiful, sad day when he was interred. It was as if all the veteran hamsters were there in spirit. My hamster was a full Colonel and served in Vietnam and Desert Shield. When will animals get the rights they deserve and finally be treated as humans??

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  2. Utterly childish and ridiculous. Says a lot about the mentality of people dumb enough to volunteer for military “service”. Unbelievable.

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    • Gelgamark, I’m just guessing that you come to this website just to be a dickhole. Oh you probably go on military website to spew your pablum.

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      • If you can’t understand the idiocy of calling a dog “sergeant” you are beyond hope. Brainwashed weirdo.

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    • maybe you should read the article, he was a Sargent…hmmm who’s the moron again Gelgamark? Honorably discharged

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        • You are an idiot and need to be quiet unless you have something SIGNIFCANT to say. These dogs are heroes and deserve a decent burial.

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    • If your dog saved your life, you wouldn’t hold it in higher regards than just another animal? There are times when these dogs allow the solders to do their jobs – this dog found bombs so that his handler could disarm them. If a solder can’t find a bomb, he/she cannot disarm them, therefore putting them all in danger. There are service men and women who are only alive today because of these dogs. You’re outnumbered here – myself and other people who have commented on this story are obviously on this site because have a strong passion for dogs. Maybe you should go comment on something else.

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  3. Gelgamark you are the moron. The dog served 9 tours. It was promoted and discharged. It is the same way that killing a police dog is “Killing on officer”. Sure the dead are dead worm food, but for those who are still living and those who served with this dog, they deserve to see their loved one honored and for those who visit the cemetery they may also enjoy visiting the site where a beloved bomb dog is interred.

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    • Haha The dog “served 9 tours” huh? Wow Officer Scruffy really must have known what he was doing huh? I love how you cite an equally stupid policy – having police dogs treated as officers. Personifying animals…a sign of low intelligence and delusion. The people who loved the dog need to grieve like adults and stop attaching some bizarre importance to its death ritual. Maybe they can bronze Officer Scruffy’s poop and put it on the mantle, that way they’ll never forget him. Disgraceful idiocy.

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  4. Why not bury them both in a pet cemetery? That would solve it. After all, humans and animals are apparently equal, right??

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  5. Ooh no the violent patriotic militard is mad. Lol what a surprise. Keep acting as if animals are humans, it makes you look smart.

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    • Troll needs a life. My dog is more human than you are Gelgamark, at least she spends her days bringing joy to others. What do you do? Insult a grieving soldier? Insult people who understand how to form relationships with our evolutionary cousins? My dog licking her ass has more purpose than you do.

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  6. He’s just a lonely 14 year old with no life living off of others with nothing better to do.

    Service is service in the military and we are all safer from it. These remarkable animals should be honored. If not beside those who worked with them then somewhere equally as respected.

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