Colt’s final farewell


Deputies, friends pay tribute to K-9 deputy

Wyatt Luthman, center, 5, of Anna, son of Ashley Luthman, pets retired K-9 Colt with Colt’s partner Shelby County Sheriff’s Deputy Frank Bleigh on top of the Shelby Hills hill on Friday, Dec. 18. Standing behind them are, Shelby County Sheriff K-9 Deputy Rod Robbins, far left, and Ohio State Highway Patrol Officer Jeremy Wheeland.


Luke Gronneberg | Sidney Daily News

SIDNEY — Shelby County Sheriff’s Office retired K-9 Deputy Colt took a final tour of the area he patrolled for nine years Friday afternoon.

Colt, who was a deputy from 2010 through 2019, had two handlers during his time with the sheriff’s office. Deputy Frank Bleigh was his handler from 2012 until his retirement, at which time Colt made his home with the Bleigh family. His first handler was Sgt. Brad Pleiman from 200 to 2012.

“It is with a broken heart that we announce that on Friday, Dec. 18, at 1530 hours we will allow Colt to visit his special place for the last time. Just about every shift, Deputy Frank Bleigh would take Colt to Shelby Hills to run and play. Colt looked forward to the times he got to run around the hill during or after his shift. It was even more special when kids would be sledding down the hill on a snowy day and he could run and play with them,” said Chief Deputy Jim Frye.

“Colt worked as a dual purpose K-9 for the Shelby County Sheriff’s Office from 2010 to 2019. His first handler, Sgt. Brad Pleiman worked Colt from 2010 to 2012 and Deputy Frank Bleigh from 2012 to 2019. Colt made many apprehensions and drug locates, Colt worked hard and played even harder. When he retired, he stayed at home, relaxing from a dedicated career to the citizens of Shelby County, Frye wrote in a release that he emailed to residents whose lives were touched by Colt.

“During the past few months Colt has declined in his health and was diagnosed with Spinal Myelopathy and it’s became hard for him to move around and hold his bowels. A decision had to be made as to the pain and quality of life Colt was having. So it’s been decided, it is best that we end the suffering Colt is going through,” said Frye.

During Colt’s final farewell, deputies and others were invited to visit with Colt at Shelby Hills via a drive by to say their final goodbye to Colt.

Colt was there with his handler Deputy Frank Bleigh and Lori Bleigh. Once everyone got through the pass by, Colt was driven by the sheriff’s office for one last time. He will then ride to the Animal Shelter, where he will make his last call. Once Colt crosses the rainbow bridge, he will be escorted to Dayton for his cremation. Colt will be placed in a special handmade urn and some of his ashes will be scattered at an undetermined location at a later date.

“I know these times are hard due to COVID-19, but this was the best option we could come up with to make sure we comply with the social distancing orders and still honor Colt’s service,” said Frye.

The drive by went up the entrance to Shelby Hills off of Children’s Home Road to the area of the flag pole where Colt will be and then down the exit toward Children’s Home Road.

“As we remember the times Colt would run around the office knowing exactly where to go get treats, it would be appreciated to give Colt a last treat,” said Frye.

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Wyatt Luthman, center, 5, of Anna, son of Ashley Luthman, pets retired K-9 Colt with Colt’s partner Shelby County Sheriff’s Deputy Frank Bleigh on top of the Shelby Hills hill on Friday, Dec. 18. Standing behind them are, Shelby County Sheriff K-9 Deputy Rod Robbins, far left, and Ohio State Highway Patrol Officer Jeremy Wheeland.
https://www.sidneydailynews.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/47/2020/12/web1_SDN121920K9Colt-1.jpgWyatt Luthman, center, 5, of Anna, son of Ashley Luthman, pets retired K-9 Colt with Colt’s partner Shelby County Sheriff’s Deputy Frank Bleigh on top of the Shelby Hills hill on Friday, Dec. 18. Standing behind them are, Shelby County Sheriff K-9 Deputy Rod Robbins, far left, and Ohio State Highway Patrol Officer Jeremy Wheeland. Luke Gronneberg | Sidney Daily News
Deputies, friends pay tribute to K-9 deputy