The handler of an Oklahoma City police dog killed in the line of duty was able to give a "final goodbye" to his partner at a funeral service with full police honors.
Oklahoma City police officer Sgt. Ryan Stark leaned over Kye's casket to pet his snout for the last time on Aug. 28, 2014.
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The 3-year-old German shepherd was stabbed while attempting to take down a violent felon, who was then shot and killed by Stark, the Associated Press reported.
The police department confirmed the dog’s death on Facebook on Aug. 25, a day after the stabbing.
“We are deeply saddened to report that the K9 that was stabbed last night while attempting to take a violent felon into custody, passed away this afternoon as a result of his injuries,” the department posted.
More than 33,000 users post had shared the post and thousands had offered their condolences as of Tuesday evening.
"Please know, your department and his Sgt. have our respect, heartfelt condolences, and gratitude for what Officer Kye did for his department," one user commented.
“Had tears in my eyes. He certainly deserves a funeral w honors & his name on a memorial for officers killed in the line of duty," another commented.
The police department did just that.
The dog was laid to rest in a flag-draped coffin at a funeral service attended by more than 1,000 people and dozens of service dogs.
A nearly five-minute tribute video that played at the dog's funeral showed the strong bond between Stark and his canine partner. (Mobile users can see the video at the link above.)
The officer met the dog during his training process and the pair officially hit the streets together on Oct. 20, 2012.
“I got him when he was about 16 months old – and I’ve been assigned with him ever since,” Stark said in the video.
The police department ended the video with one final message: “God’s speed, Kye. We’ll take it from here.”