This story from the Sydney Morning Herald tells of a brave dog who's just earned himself a medal. Until I saw this I'd only been aware of the Dickin medal for animals, which we've featured a number of times in The E-Sylum. This medal is awarded by the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (RSPCA) of Australia.
It's a tale worthy of a movie script.
Sarbi, the army explosives detection dog, goes missing in action in Afghanistan. After 13 months lost in a war zone, she is found by chance and brought home to be awarded the RSPCA Purple Cross for bravery.
The labrador's adventure began back in 2008 when she was out on patrol in Afghanistan's Oruzgan province with her handler.
Sarbi and her comrades were attacked by insurgents in a battle which left nine soldiers, including her handler, wounded.
During the battle, in which Lance Corporal Mark Donaldson earned the Victoria Cross, a rocket-propelled grenade broke the lead that tethered Sarbi to her handler.
After numerous attempts to find the dog, she was declared missing in action and her handler returned to Australia thinking he would never see her again.
Thirteen months later a US soldier out on patrol in the area where Sarbi went missing spotted a black labrador walking with a local villager, an unusual sight in Afghanistan.
A quick check of her microchip confirmed the dog was indeed Sarbi, and after a long stay in quarantine she was returned to Australia and reunited with her handler.
Sarbi is only the eighth animal to receive the prestigious Purple Cross for outstanding service to humans. She joins the likes of Private John Simpson Kirkpatrick's famous donkey Murphy who helped save wounded ANZAC soldiers during the battle of Gallipoli.
RSPCA President Lynne Bradshaw presented Sarbi with the medal on Tuesday at a ceremony attended by Chief of the Army, Lieutenant-General Ken Gillespie.
To read the complete article, see:
Brave army dog Sarbi wins Purple Cross
Here's some more background (and a picture of the medal) from the site of the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals of Australia. The web page lists the animals that have been awarded the medal.
The RSPCA Australia Purple Cross Award recognises the deeds of animals that have shown outstanding service to humans, particularly if they showed exceptional courage in risking their own safety or life to save a person from injury or death.
The Award was named to honour the Purple Cross Society which was established soon after the outbreak of World War II to raise funds for the supply of gear and veterinary treatment for the Light Horse Brigade. The Purple Cross Society was disbanded in 1971 and the RSPCA in Victoria was charged with preserving and displaying the flag of the Society, which now hangs in the Council Room of the RSPCA Victoria headquarters. As a tribute to the memory of all of Australia's war horses, the RSPCA Australia exceptional animal award is known as the Purple Cross Award. Recipients of the Purple Cross Award receive a Purple Cross medal and a certificate.
To read the complete article, see
RSPCA PURPLE CROSS AWARD
Wayne Homren, Editor
The Numismatic Bibliomania Society is a non-profit organization
promoting numismatic literature. See our web site at coinbooks.org.
To submit items for publication in The E-Sylum, write to the Editor
at this address: firstname.lastname@example.org
To subscribe go to: https://my.binhost.com/lists/listinfo/esylum
Copyright © 1998 - 2020 The Numismatic Bibliomania Society (NBS)
All Rights Reserved.
NBS Home Page
Contact the NBS webmaster