Bolling K-9 team deploys with Army Airborne

  • Published
  • By Senior Airman Tim Chacon
  • 11th Wing Publice Affairs
Staff Sgt. Timothy Evans, 11th Security Forces Squadron, was deployed the first half of 2008 with his partner, Timi. Timi is not just aother Security Forces Airman; Timi is a 5-year-old Dual-Purpose Explosive Detection German Shepherd.

The two unit-team deployed with the Army's 101st Airborne Division to forward operating locations in Iraq from January to July 2008. They spent their time outside the wire for days at a time, sometimes up to a week.

They spent their time doing combat patrols, weapons cache searches, improvised explosive device searches, and performing raids.

"We were right there in the middle of things-kicking down doors and looking for people of interest," said Sergeant Evans. "We were doing stuff that really made a difference."
Sergeant Evans traveled all over the Salah Ad Din Province by numerous types of vehicles like Humvees and Black Hawk helicopters. Salah Ad Din is located in the northern portion of Iraq and holds key locations, like Tikrit and Samarra.

Sergeant Evans and Timi ran point on patrols, constantly putting themselves in danger by being out front. Not only was there the ever present danger of receiving the first wave of enemy fire, but also IEDs. The team received small-arms fire on several occasions, having some close calls with snipers. Unfortunately, the unit also had some casualties due to IEDs.

The unit's loss of life from IEDs emphasized the importance of what Sergeant Evans and his Timi's mission. Timi's natural abilities mixed with his Security Forces training make him extremely effective at locating explosive materials before they became a danger to the unit. Timi's training also makes him very useful at capturing fleeing adversaries and advancing antagonists.

During their deployment, the sergeant and his canine partner assisted in finding more than100 pounds of weapons, explosive material and explosive-making material. They also neutralized 17 insurgents.

"We train a lot, but you really can't understand until you get there," said Sergeant Evans. "Once you're on the frontlines taking fire, losing people, finding IEDs that were meant for you, it's completely different."

It's hard for the handlers who deploy, but it is even harder for the dogs. They deploy more than the handlers. Timi is already scheduled to return to Iraq in March with another handler.

Sergeant Evans has a lot of love and respect for his dog. "We work really well together, we gel," Sergeant Evans said of his canine. "I really relied on him to get me home to my family."

"She is what kept me going; she is what kept me diligent in my job so I could come home safe," said Sergeant Evans.

Sergeant Evans is one of several dog handlers in SFS who are on almost constant deployment rotations to some of the most forward locations around the world.