The Airborne and Special Operations Museum (ASOM) Foundation hosted a K-9 Veterans Day Fair in downtown Fayetteville, March 9. The ceremony, scheduled to take place annually, was held in front of the museum and included a wounded warrior dog sculpture made by craftsman James Mellick, from the Wounded Warrior Dogs Project.

“We have this beautiful K-9 memorial. We are the only place in the world that pays tribute to the K-9 Soldiers,” said Liz Mileshko, executive director for the ASOM foundation. “We decided that we needed to have a celebration for those who have served. We thought this would be a good way to bring the community together in celebration of our furry friends.”

During the event, guests were able to get an insight into K-9 training and gain a sense of how the dogs help law enforcement and military members, through demonstrations from the 550th Military Working Dog Detachment and the city of Fayetteville Police Department.

K-9s including Nero and active duty military working dogs, Helen and Diana, displayed some of their day-to-day responsibilities for the crowd.

Fayetteville Police Officer Nicole Burton, who has been teamed up with Nero for six years, talked about the importance of his work.

“I feel like normally K-9s do not get the recognition they deserve when it comes to the general public,” said Burton. “They are great for us and they take care of us as best as they can.”

The event also included tables and tents with animal services, food trucks and kids crafts.

For more information on the event visit www.asomf.org.