FOND DU LAC - It's been said there are few things more precious than the relationship between a man and his dog. But that would be an understatement when it comes to the bond between Officer Ryan Williams and K-9 Grendel.
"The story is such an incredible one," said Fond du Lac Police Chief Bill Lamb.
It's a tragic story, too. As shots rang out during a March 2011 standoff, Grendel and Officer Williams were caught in the crossfire. Both were shot. Officer Craig Birkholz lost his life responding to the same call.
"In the days, weeks, months -- quite frankly, years following the tragic loss of Officer Birkholz, Officer Williams and K-9 Grendel really became that inspiration and that hope -- that sliver of hope that meant so much," said Chief Lamb.
Against all odds, Officer Williams and Grendel survived their injuries.
"We wanted to get out there and get out to the public and show them we could rebound from this, that we could come back," Officer Williams said.
But after 8 years of working together on the streets of Fond du Lac, K-9 Grendel's career has come to an end.
"I didn't' really think it was going to be this emotional. Now that it's here, it is.. and oh well, that's just what it is," said Officer Williams. "It was a great eight years, and I would do it all over again. I wouldn't change a thing."
Now that Grendel is retired from the police force, he begins his new job of being a normal "house dog", spending his golden years at Officer Williams' home.