New Sheriff's K-9 officer named after MN soldier killed in Afghanistan


12:35 a.m: The Freeborn County Sheriff's Office has selected the name of its new K9-officer following a public vote...the dog will be named "Stalker."

The name was suggested as a tribute to Albert Lea's Chief Warrant Officer 3 Corey Goodnature, an Army helicopter pilot for the 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment.

The 35-year-old was piloting a helicopter bringing a security team to rescue stricken Navy SEALs in eastern Afghanistan in 2005 when it was shot down, killing Goodnature and 15 others on board.

The 160th's motto is "Night Stalkers Don't Quit," hence the suggestion for the dog's name.

You can read more about CW3 Cory Goodnature here.

10:00 a.m: The Freeborn County Sheriff's Office is getting a new addition to its K-9 department – and it wants the public's help naming it.

The office was given a number of suggestions following its appeal earlier this week to name its newest member, which they then whittled down to five final options.

People had been asked for two-syllable names that ideally had a story behind them. The final options are:

  • Jaysek: A combination of the names of Grand Meadow Office Jason Meyer – who died on duty in 1999 – and Albert Lea Police's Lt. Phil Bartusek, who passed away from cancer in 2008.
  • Stalker: In honor of Albert Lea Chief Warrant Officer 3 Corey Goodnature.
  • Ruger: Named after the firearms manufacturer – suggested because "it's also a very powerful name," the sheriff's office said.
  • Odin: In honor of the God of Germanic and Norse mythology – associated with battle, healing, knowledge and death, among other traits.
  • Razor: Suggested because "it sounds cool."

According to ABC 6, the German Shepherd arrived in Minnesota from Slovakia last month and has been undergoing training under his current name of "Furby."

He will be the only K-9 officer at Freeborn County Sheriff's Office, after commissioners gave the go ahead to bring the K-9 unit back at a meeting in December.

You can vote for your favorite name here.

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