In India, a hero police dog who saved countless of lives during the 26/11 Mumbai attacks, passed away on April 8, 2016.
Max, an 11-year-old Labrador Retriever, sniffed out 8 kg of RDX outside Taj Mahal Palace Hotel during the Mumbai attacks on November 11, 2008. Aside from his heroic actions in 26/11, Max was also recognized for his work in the 2011 Zaveri Bazaar blasts and 7/11 attacks.
The Labrador passed away at his retirement home in Virar on April 8 after battling an ailment for a week.
Sadly, not a single police officer was present when he was laid to rest wrapped in India’s Tricolour flag, according to the Mumbai Mirror. The local newspaper reported that most of the officers they contacted were busy with security arrangements for the upcoming IPL matches.
Only Max’s carer, Fizzah Shah, and former handler Subhash Gawde were present to bid him goodbye.
Max was born on October 28, 2004. He was still a young puppy when Mumbai’s Bomb Detection and Disposal Squad bought him.
Gawde was Max’s handler during the 26/11 attacks.
“After I got a call from the control room, I rushed to the Taj with Max,” Gawde told Mumbai Mirror.
Amidst the deafening sound of gunfire and explosions, Max knew what he needed to do. He stopped near a tree and barked at a sling bag hidden behind a huge water bowl for birds.
“When I opened the bag, I found 8 kg of RDX, four detonators, ball bearings and other shrapnel. They were the first explosives detected at the site,” Gawde recalled. “After the explosives were secured and put away, we entered the hotel. Just then, one of the terrorists threw a grenade from a floor above us. It missed us and exploded next to us. It’s a miracle we were not wounded.”
In total, the hero Labrador found around 25 grenades in the hotel reception area.
Max was honored for his bravery during the attacks and was awarded with a gold medal.
After 10 years of amazing and notable service, Max retired last year. He was adopted by Shah together with three other bomb squad dogs.
Rest in peace, Max. Thank you for all the work that you’ve done.