Commissioners honor veteran service dog Sarge at the 8th annual “22” Challenge/Veteran Suicide Awareness Walk

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On Saturday, Commissioner Melinda Kane joined the community to honor Sarge, the veteran service dog. Sarge’s owner, veteran and American Legion FW Grigg Post 68 Commander, John Brouse, were on hand to accept the award for his four-legged friend. The presentation took place before the annual “22” Challenge/Veteran Suicide Awareness Walk, which is used to raise awareness about veteran suicide and show support for those who have sacrificed so much for the country.


“I’ve known John for years and I know the positive impact Sarge has had on him as a veteran and what Sarge means to John as a service dog,” Kane said. “I want to thank John for his service, and commend him and Sarge for everything they do for our veteran’s community here in Merchantville and throughout the county.”


In 1990, John Brouse served in Operation Desert Shield/Desert Storm and in 1991 was deployed to Southwest Asia. Upon his return home John joined the American Legion FW Grigg Post #68 where he served as Post Commander. Through his involvement with the post, he has been able to bring awareness to post traumatic stress disorder, suicide and service dog protocol for veterans.


During the month of June, the Merchantville American Legion Post hosts their annual Sarge’s “22” Challenge/Veteran Suicide Awareness Walk, which was created by John to raise funds for America’s VetDogs, an organization that provides service dogs to wounded veterans. Through this organization John met his service companion, Sarge, and as a puppy, Sarge completed two years of training and has been providing support to John ever since.  Sarge is now eight years old and serves a vital role in John’s daily life by providing comfort in times of distress, retrieves items and assist’s John with physical tasks. 


To see photos from the event, click here.