A thoroughbred horse, Warrior, is passed through various owners before he is shipped to the thick of the action on the Western Front to serve as his current master’s mount for all four years of the First World War.
Warrior and General ‘Galloping Jack Seeley’ were involved from the first engagements through to one of the last, the Battle of Moreuil Wood. Together they fought in terrifying battles and witnessed the death of many horses and masters who served alongside them, terrible deaths, but through it all Warrior seemed to pass like a spirit.
This is the tale of his heroic wartime exploits and eventual return to the green fields of England. An evocative and powerful story of a real and great war horse.
Warrior’s story was the basis for the fictional Joey in Michael Morpurgo’s War Horse.
Isabel George is a writer, journalist and PR, who has worked with animal charities, and particularly the PDSA, for many years. She has previously written for children and has also worked with the Imperial War Museum on various events and exhibitions connected with the Animals at War theme.
The true story of a small grey donkey called Murphy, chosen to be a trusty ‘ambulance’ during the bloody Gallipoli campaign in 1915. He carried wounded soldiers over the hilly,craggy terrain to the field hospital as the bombs and snipers’ bullets rained down. The donkey was recruited by Australian stretcher-bearer ‘Jack’ Simpson, who cared for his brave helper day and night. Murphy never gave up or complained; he worked to the point of exhaustion, saving hundreds of lives.
At the end of the battle, when the time came for the donkeys to be returned to Greece, the Australian ‘diggers’ were desperate to protect Murphy - he was one of them, he was a digger and a war hero. They fixed a brown luggage label to his harness, bearing his name and status, and hoped it would secure his safe passage home.
There were dogs involved with the landings, dogs the soldiers could not bear to leave behind and dogs trained to patrol, protect and locate. The dogs sailed with the Merchant Navy and brought their boats into dangerous waters to retrieve the wounded or stranded. They were on land, in the air and on the water during the D-Day operation – playing their special part in every aspect.
Through this inspiring short collection of the true stories of four of these canine heroes the remarkable achievements of the D-Day dogs are brought to life.
Many heroes were made on 9/11 and in the weeks that followed. Not all of them showed human courage. Some of them could only show that they were truly man’s best friend. German Shepherds, Labradors and Spaniels accounted for the majority of the four-legged heroes.
Over three hundred search and rescue dogs worked the pile at Ground Zero and the crash site at the Pentagon. For hours they searched, fighting off exhaustion with sheer determination and they continued every day long after the hope of finding survivors had passed.
There were faithful Guide dogs who helped their sightless owners out of the Twin Towers and led them to safety showed unstinting devotion in the face of adversity. And later, therapy dogs arrived to bring comfort to the bereaved and confused. At every stage of the operation, dogs were there helping humankind in various roles. And invaluably, they provided comfort and reassurance and lifted spirits by their pure presence.
Sadly many of the dogs are no longer with us but their achievements will never be forgotten. Isabel George was fortunate that the people close to the dogs were pleased to be asked to share their stories. This book is to honour the dogs and their people.