Puppy from Iowa to join New York fire station, 3 years after Dalmatian died who helped 9/11 firefighters heal

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PERRY, Iowa (WHO-TV) – Tank the Dalmatien from Perry, Iowa, is heading to New York. He will become the mascot dog for Ladder 20 of the New York Fire Department in Lower Manhattan.

Tank is set to replace Dog Twenty, which was donated to the Ladder Company 20 years ago after losing seven firefighters in the fall of the North Tower on September 11, 2001.

“I’ve always known Twenty, who is the Dalmatian that the Rochester Sheriff gave to New York Firefighters Ladder 20 20 years ago,” said Sara Rubin of the Iowa Dalmatians. “She was a donation after the towers collapsed where they lost seven people and it was a donation to help them heal.”

After Twenty’s death in 2018, it was learned that a new dog was available, but the firefighters were not yet ready. Then there was a Facebook post saying, “They were ready to love again,” Rubin said.

NEW YORK – SEPTEMBER 11: Dalmatian mascot ‘Twenty’ watches firefighters take a break between ceremonies at FDNY Ladder 20 on September 13, 2009 in New York City. “Twenty” was given to the fire company in the aftermath of September 11 where Ladder 20 lost seven firefighters. (Photo by Mario Tama / Getty Images)

Iowa Dalmatians donate Tank to the NYFD, and a group of retired Deputy Sheriff’s officers from Rochester, New York, have raised money for Rubin and his mother, Tawni Plath, to bring Tank to the barracks firefighters.

“They heard they were going to have another puppy, and the fire department asked if we could go on our own,” Rubin said. “So these super sheriff’s deputies, they’re retired now, they decided to pay for our trip to go to New York and bring them this baby.”

Tank has a lively personality.

“He’s fun, carefree and wants to run and play,” Rubin said. “He loves to snuggle up when he doesn’t want to run.

The mother and daughter will fly to Tank in New York on Tuesday, then spend a few days in town taking in the scenery and keeping watch on Tank.


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