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Culture Corner

Scribblings and Screenings for the Animal Set

Dark Day, Good Dogs

Three recent books offer powerful tributes to canine courage on one of the darkest days in U.S. history.

The chaos of the World Trade Center on Sept. 11, 2011, would have been challenging enough for anyone to negotiate, perhaps none more so than a blind man on the 78th floor of Tower One. But thanks to the unwavering trust between Michael Hingson and his guide dog Roselle, there were two fewer victims that day. In Thunder Dog, Hingson (with co-author Susy Flory) recounts his escape with Roselle down 1,463 stairs and subsequent flight through the streets of Manhattan. Interspersed with vivid descriptions of the day’s terror are Hingson’s reflections on life with the dogs who have helped show him the way.

Dog Heroes of September 11th, by Nona Kilgore Bauer, profiles 80 dog-and-handler teams that searched the crash sites for human remains, helping to bring closure to victims’ families. Photographs of dogs balancing on concrete beams and traversing shifting mountains of rubble reveal the dangerous working conditions, while interviews with the handlers detail the dogs’ tireless dedication to the task and the comfort they brought to distraught rescue workers.

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