Officially, dogs have served with Marines in battle since World War II. A new temporary exhibit War Dogs: Never Above You, Never Below You, Always Beside You at the National Museum of the Marine Corps spotlights and honors the important role these four-legged warriors serve.
Opening May 18, the exhibit combines sculptures by artist James Mellick with combat
art from the collections of the National Museum of the Marine Corps, the United States
Coast Guard and the United States Navy, along with artifacts related to Marine Corps
working dogs. Mellick’s creations, carved from wood, are symbolic of the sacrifices
made by canine and human warriors alike.
“I am moved by the physical and emotional sacrifice by the men and women of the
United States military,” said Mellick. “Contemporary medical technology and triage in
the field has more veterans surviving with injuries that would have been fatal in previous
wars. In my limited and small way, I want to pay tribute to the soldiers who served with
great sacrifice by creating the sculptural allegory of wounded warrior dogs who were the
soldier’s best friend and companion in battle.”
James Mellick Artwork Currently On Display
The 28 pieces of combat art depict dogs at work around the globe from WWII in the
Pacific all the way to the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Artifacts that tell specific stories
of Marine Corps dogs and handlers round out
Mellick’s Wounded Warrior Dogs Project and a new series titled K9 War Stories
(about the heroism and sacrifice of military K9 teams) are at the center of the War Dogs exhibit
that runs through September 30, 2019.
Wounded Warrior Dogs Project at this summer’s War Dogs Exhibit at the National Museum of the Marine Corps, Triangle, VA. Art of military working dogs runs through September 30