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Eugene Police K9 killed while off duty by hit and run driver

K9 officer Blek was hit and killed by an unknown motorist on November 10, 2017, while off-duty with Officer Rob Griesel in rural Lane County. (Photo courtesy Eugene Police Department)

EUGENE, Ore. -- The Eugene Police Department says K9 officer Blek was hit and killed by an unknown motorist on November 10 while off-duty with Officer Rob Griesel in rural Lane County.

K9 Blek was only weeks away from retirement, the department said.

According to Chief Pete Kerns, “Blek has been a go-to dog for our department. He enjoyed a storied career and had a warrior’s spirit. His passing is crushing for his family and he will be missed by us all.”

Just this year, Blek was honored with EPD’s and Oregon Peace Officers Association’s K9 Valor Awards for the capture of a suspect in the shooting of a deputy.

Blek was a German Shepherd from Slovakia. He was born in September 2009 and selected as a K9 for EPD in March of 2012.

"Blek served our community with honor and distinction and had a reputation as a K9 who could be counted on in the most dangerous incidents, the department said in a news release. "Blek was a part of our department and will be greatly missed. Our condolences extend to Officer Rob Griesel and his family."

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