HARRISBURG, Pa. -- A very special Harrisburg Police Department K-9 will retire Friday afternoon.
Zeke is the 6-year-old K-9 who was shot in the line of duty back in 2013. Zeke received an official proclamation from Harrisburg Mayor Eric Papenfuse, a tribute to all of his work serving the city
"Congratulations Zeke. We'll give you a round of applause," said Harrisburg Mayor Eric Papenfuse.
A proclamation for Zeke, a playful Belgian Malinois K-9 with Harrisburg Bureau of Police. He began his training in 2012. Since then, he’s done quite a bit of serious work for the City of Harrisburg.
"Whereas k-9 Zeke was credited with 58 arrests of wanted felons, locating over 339 grams of heroin," said
Shortly after he began his work, Zeke was seriously injured in the line of duty in early 2013.
"He saved lives that day. One of us would have been shot and killed if it hadn't been for my K-9 partner," said Sergeant Tyron Meik.
Though Zeke was shot in the neck by a suspect, he held onto the man, until officers were no longer threatened. Zeke’s known by his handler, Sergeant Meik, as a hero.
"I don't people can really understand. Pet owners have a bond with their dog, but when you have a bond with a K-9 partner, it's something that most people can't understand," said Sgt. Meik.
Zeke fully recovered from the wound, but unfortunately, other back injuries are forcing him into an early retirement. He’ll live with Sergeant Meik and his family, a bittersweet end to his service.
"This dog has been my life, my partner," said Sgt. Meik.
And today, FOX 43 got the chance to talk to Zeke. He may have confused the mic for a toy, though.
Sergeant Meik says Zeke’s truly special, and K-9 units all across the country deserve recognition for saving lives.
"I only look at this as being one dog, one hero, there's many more out there, doing the same thing," said Sgt. Meik.
Sergeant Meik is training with another K-9 now. The name he says is a surprise. That dog will help officers look for narcotics too. He says it may be hard for Zeke to see another dog in the back of his patrol car but that Zeke will get a ton of love at home.