BRICK – Township resident Donna Mitchell was recently reunited with a familiar member of the community’s police department who she had given a very special gift.
On Aug. 29, she visited the police station to see how Echo, a member of the police department’s K9 Team was doing with his new body armor.
The reunion involved Mitchell taking some photos with Echo and Echo’s handler, Officer Scott Smith.
In February of 2018, Donna had to put her beloved Lhasa Apso, “Frosty,” to sleep. She had rescued Frosty from a shelter only eight years prior and the two of them had become the best of friends.
Feeling the loss of her dear companion, Mitchell wanted to do something to honor his memory. She decided to purchase a tactical vest for one of the Brick Police K9s, and she reached out to Sgt. Paul Catalina, who oversees the K9 unit.
The department’s newest K9 Team of Officers Smith and Echo completed their training earlier this year and hit the streets. Thanks to Mitchell’s generosity, and Frosty’s memory, they can do so more safely now.
Echo’s vest, which is built to exceed threat level II standards and can stop a variety of handgun rounds and bladed weapons, bears the memory of Frosty with the words, “In Memory of Frosty Mitchell.”
During the reunion Smith got to show Mitchell this memorialization of Frosty and told her, “The words are on the vest right where Echo’s heart is.”
This made for a very emotional moment for Mitchell, but one which she was thankful to be a part of.
The vest is a patrol/swat vest manufactured by the company K9 Storm. It cost over $3,000. Through custom sizing and special design, it cuts back on material, which keeps it light enough to allow Echo to maintain full mobility and agility while also keeping his heat levels down.