By RORY SCHULER

She was a hero, a movie star and a dog.

Ruby lived a full life and saved the lives of others.

Rhode Island State Police announced the death of 11½-year-old K-9 Ruby.

She was euthanized on Friday May 13 “following a sudden, acute and incurable illness”, according to a press release from the RISP.

“Today the Rhode Island State Police family mourns the death of K-9 Ruby,” said Col. Darnell S. Weaver, Rhode Island State Police Superintendent and Director of the public security department. “His partnership with Corporal O’Neil was special and their search and rescue work in our K-9 unit has done a great service to the people of Rhode Island who have needed their help. Her award-winning rescue inspired us and we are grateful for her years of service.

K-9 Ruby was managed by Corporal Daniel O’Neil of the Rhode Island State Police and worked out of the Scituate State Police barracks. The partners have served together since 2011.

“Our condolences go out to Rhode Island State Police K-9 Ruby, who served the state with distinction for 11 years,” Johnston Police said in a post on the department’s Facebook page. “Our thoughts are with RISP, Corporal O’Neil and his family.

Ruby was a mixed-breed dog — part Australian Shepard, part Border Collie — adopted by the Rhode Island SPCA and became one of the first Ocean State shelter dogs to train and serve with the Rhode Island State Police, according to the press release.

During her career, she and O’Neil participated in numerous search and rescue missions as part of the K-9 unit. O’Neil and Ruby have also volunteered to participate in the Community, Diversity and Equity unit, visiting schools and attending local events.

“K-9 Ruby has dedicated her life to serving the citizens of Rhode Island and positively impacting everyone she interacted with,” Weaver said. “She has become a beacon of hope for all shelter dogs, showing the world what a shelter dog can do when given just love and the chance to shine. She has had a good life. fulfilled, happy and wonderful, not only as a soldier, but within a loving family. She worked until the end and never gave up on doing what she loved most: making people smile .

According to RISP, in Gloucester in late 2017, Ruby “managed to locate a lost and distressed teenager who was the son of a shelter volunteer who cared for her when she was a puppy”.

“As a result of this rescue, Ruby was named American Humane Hero Search and Rescue Dog of the Year for 2018,” state police said in the press release. “Her story was incorporated into Netflix’s 2022 move, ‘Rescued by Ruby’.”

She also helped with recovery efforts after the last Newport cliff collapse.

In 2020, Ruby and O’Neil were injured in an accident in Warwick after a vehicle hit their cruiser from behind as it was pulled to that side of Interstate 95 north for a traffic stop.

“Ruby was living with Corporal O’Neil and his family,” according to the RISP. “She will be honored privately.”

RISP also posted a memory on its Facebook page:

“We are saddened to announce the death of K-9 Ruby from a sudden, acute and incurable illness. Ruby was rescued from the RISPCA and served admirably for 11 years. Please keep Corporal O’Neil, her family and the entire K-9 family in your thoughts.

Concluding the agency’s statements about Ruby’s loss, state police noted that Corporal O’Neil was unavailable for interviews.

“We ask this member of the media to respect the privacy of the O’Neil family at this time,” they asked media covering the story.

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