“Daysi and Olmos were an ideal team pairing,” said Tech. Sgt. Kevin Nelson, 802nd SFS kennel master. “Olmos was Daysi’s first official handler and she was his first dog. Their relationship is immense because this was their first experience as a MWD team.”
MWD Daysi was a military working dog — narcotic detection certified – assigned to the 802nd Security Forces Squadron at Joint Base San, Antonio-Lackland, Texas.
Staff Sgt. Paul Olmos, was Daysi’s partner.
After she passed her certification in January of 2014, they grew into a solid team, and even took part in the annual Texas Toughest Dog competition.
“Daysi became one hell of a runner,” Olmos said. “We ran though an obstacle course and up hills for a total of four miles. There were times when she dragged me up those hills. We became stronger together and I’ll never forget that.”
Then this January came, and tragedy struck.
Trainers noticed a display of discomfort in her left leg, and while nothing serious was detected immediately, a subsequent exam revealed the absolute worst: Daysi had a malignant tumor — an aggressive form of cancer.
Due to the specific location, surgery wasn’t an option.
“The news of Daysi’s declining health hit us hard; this sort of news always does,” Nelson said. “Euthanasia of MWDs is a last resort and we try to approach every option available before it comes to that. Most of our dogs get adopted out or continue on with their service in a civilian police department.”
On her very last day, sirens blared throughout the base and a procession was had, as Daysi was escorted by those who worked closest with her for a final walk, to the veterinary clinic.
“I’m single and I don’t have immediate family here, so I’d come on the weekends just to visit her and take her on runs,” Olmos said. “I couldn’t even tell you how much time we’ve spent together.”
“Through all the training we’ve done together and the long 12 to14 hour days; it was just me and her. She’s my partner.”