CYPRESS, Texas – Bretagne, pronounced "Brittany," was not a human member of the Cy-Fair Volunteer Fire Department but one with four legs.
"Bretagne was a special part of our department, special part of our lives," said David Padovan, a spokesperson with the fire department.
Bretagne was the last known living search & rescue dog deployed on September 11, 2001. In June, with her health declining, she had to be put down.
"At ground zero, she not only searched for survivors, but she was also there to help the responders who were down, who were depressed, to get their minds off of what they were doing," Padovan said.
Sunday, everyone's mind in Cypress was focused on the lovable golden retriever as she received a plaque in her honor. Handler and firefighter Denise Corliss accepted the plaque on the K9's behalf.
At Lauren's Garden in Market Square Park in Downtown, Mayor Sylvester Turner led a 15-year anniversary commemoration of September 11.
The garden is dedicated to Lauren Catuzzi Grandcolas, the only Houston passenger aboard Flight 93 that crashed in Pennsylvania on that fateful day.
"(It felt like) it was only yesterday, and a new generation has been born since then, but the story remains the same," Turner said at the podium. "Lives were lost, and each one had a name and a family."
Boy Scout Logan Gonzales is a part of that new generation born after 2001.
"I was thinking about the lost ones and people's families," Gonzales said. "I think they would be really heartbroken."
The people we knew that day may be physically gone, but they will never be forgotten.