Smoky Back to the DogStars
United States Army/Air Corps.
"Once Upon A Time..." the start of many a fairy tale, turned to reality in
the New Guinea jungle early in 1944. The littlest soldier of World War II was
rescued from an abandoned foxhole by a GI who passed it to another, and finally
she became mine. The cost was two Australian pounds ($6.44 at the time) - the
price paid to the seller so he could return to his poker game.
Over there, we learned to do many tricks, with her teaching me as much as I taught her - a repertoire beyond that of any dog of her day. (Smoky later performed in 42 live-televison shows without repeating a trick.)
At the same time we flew combat missions together with Smoky spending long hours dangling in a soldier's pack near machine guns prepared at any moment to ward off enemy fighters.
She guided me miraculously to duck incoming shells on an LST (transport ship) - for without the presence of this "angel from a foxhole," I wouldn't have bothered to take cover. On deck, booming and vibrating from the anti-aircraft gunnery, and lying beside a jeep, we fearfully watched kamikazes being shot down while diving on our ship. That move saved us because eight men who had been standing next to us were hit.
We shared K rations, entertained troops and wounded in hospitals. Oh, we did a thousand other things.
After two years of endless journey - from Australia to Korea and many hostile places in between, when the war ended, we came home to share a growing family, Hollywood, the stage and live television for another ten years
Then on Feb. 21, 1957 by shock-surprise at the age of about 14, the inevitable came to pass, Cpl. Smoky, my buddy in war and peace, quietly left us.
It is said that time is a healer of wounds. After 43 years, sensitive scars remain. For my buddy Smoky, one thing is certain: The four pound, seven inches tall Yorkie who did everything in both war and peace, is now part of history. I am so proud !
But OH how I miss you old girl....
A four-pound Yorkshire Terrier, Smoky is a bonifide War Dog Hero of World War II and was a celebrity in her civilian life as well. To learn more about this wonderful little dog, visit her web site.
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