Jim Galloway: Cito

The banner of Good Dogs Canada shows Cito, the handsome German Shepherd left behind after the death of his human partner, RCMP Corporal Jim Galloway who died in the line of duty on the last day of February, 2004. Two thousand officers and 75 canine teams from across Canada and some from the United States attended the funeral. Bagppipes played and

Cito kept looking over his shoulder.

Police dog Cito and his human partner Corporal Jim Galloway were well known in their community and over the years had collared many bad guys and found countless lost children. Just two weeks earlier, Jim and Cito rescued a cold and hungry young boy who had disappeared in a wooded rural area.

Even incident hardened journalists covering the funeral of Corporal Galloway were moved by the ten year old German Shepherd who kept looking back over his shoulder and whimpering, looking for his master and partner. While waiting for the funeral procession to begin, many officers stopped to scratch Cito behind the ears, some dropping to their knees to wrap their arms around the dog and pat his back. When the bagpipes began, police dogs began to bark as Cito and Galloway’s former human partner, Sgt. Grant McCulloch, followed the hearse past rows and rows of uniformed police officers. Officers from every major force in the country and some from the United States were on hand to salute the 34-year veteran who spent 28 of those years as a police dog handler.

Cito kept glancing back along the route looking for the one face he would never see again. During the service he lay near the Galloway family, occasionally whimpering.

Dog handlers are always in the thick of things when there’s a dangerous situation. Often they’re the first ones in to case out a situation and sometimes things go wrong. Corporal Galloway was shot in the back after a six-hour standoff with a schizophrenic man who had refused treatment outside a house in Spruce Grove, Alberta. He died at the scene.

The death of the veteran officer shook police in the Edmonton area where Galloway was well known for his work with the RCMP search and rescue team and for his skill in training police service dogs. He was also program co-ordinator for the Civilian Search Dog Association which trained workers and search dogs to help the RCMP and rescue agencies across Canada and the United States.

At the funeral, the Lieutenant Governor of Alberta, Lois Hole reminded mourners that Galloway died doing what he loved best. “Today, more than ever, we need heroes.”

After Galloway’s death the family gave Cito to a family friend who lived in the country where the 10 year old would live out his retirement. Police dogs normally retire at approximately the age of seven. Cito had served longer than many.

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.