Two inseparable members of the Palatine Police Department have been honored before they retire to Arizona together at the end of the month.
Officer Keith Kirkpatrick, a 50-year-old human, and Iggy, a 7-year-old German shepherd, were awarded an Outstanding Service Award at the Palatine village council meeting.
Palatine Mayor Jim Schwantz read a list of some of the duo's accomplishments -- finding and seizing 4.5 kilograms of cocaine and over $26,000 in cash, and the capture of more than 20 criminal suspects -- in their five years of service.
"There are big shoes to fill for you and big paws to fill for this guy," Schwantz said, handing Kirkpatrick the award, a bronze plaque.
When the audience, which included every member of the Palatine Police Department, rose to applaud, so did Iggy, barking at the crowd playfully before returning to chewing an orange and blue ball Kirkpatrick had brought.
"Working with this dog has been the best part of this job," Kirkpatrick said before the ceremony. "He lives with me, comes home with me. He's a member of the family."
The two began their service together on April 2, 2009. Iggy was trained at a facility in Richmond, Va.
Kirkpatrick said Iggy was named after Officer Anthony "Iggy" Dunat, a Palatine police officer who died in the 1990s.
The two will work their last shifts for the department next week.