Merlin, Explosive Detection Dog

2007 killed in Afghanistan

Defence medial release

05/09/2007 MSPA 282/07


The Reconstruction Task Force recently paused operations to mourn the death of ‘Merlin,’ an Explosive Detection Dog who served with distinction throughout his Army career.

‘Merlin’ was accidentally killed in a vehicle incident earlier this month while supporting RTF reconstruction activities on the outskirts of Tarin Kowt.

 RTF personnel gathered at the Kamp Holland kennel complex with RTF Chaplain, Captain Craig Potter, to farewell their four-legged mate.

‘Merlin’ was laid to rest overlooking his home for the past few months.

Defence Spokesperson Brigadier Andrew Nikolić said ‘Merlin’ was a veteran of three operations including support to the 2006 Commonwealth Games and operations in Timor-Leste.

“Merlin is the first Army explosive detection dog to die on operations,” said Brigadier Nikolić.

“His death will be keenly felt by the RTF and the wider Royal Australian Engineers, particularly their specialist dog handlers.”

Explosive Detection Dogs are used by the RTF in a specialist search capacity to counter the high threat of improvised explosive devices throughout Oruzgan Province.

The RTF maintains an Explosive Detection Dog capability providing the required level of force protection for deployed Australian troops.

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A Hero's Legacy by Francis Edwards

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