Thursday, November 10, 2011

Cloud II

Cloud II was the first OPP police dog to die in the line of duty. The remains of Cloud II, one of the most famous police dogs in Canadian history, has been exhumed from his grave in North Bay, Ontario, in order to be moved to a permanent resting place at the OPP Headquarters in Orillia, Ontario. Cloud II had a brief, but amazing, career with his handler, Const. Ray Carson, capturing 123 fugitives and finding many missing children and lost hunters. There were many "famous takedown" stories, but most memorable to me, was to be his final operation, the capture of escaped murderer, Donald Kelly, in 1975. Kelly overpowered a North Bay prison guard while awaiting trial for a double murder, fleeing with his rifle and stolen car. After 11 days searching for Kelly, Mr. Carson and Cloud II were called to join the search. Two weeks later, 140 km. n.w. of North Bay, Cloud II picked up his scent after a railway crew gave them a tip that Kelly had been seen in this remote wilderness. Cloud II and Const. Carson tracked Kelly on a gruelling trek through bush, swamp, and in the dark of night. They came upon Kelly in a broken cabin and Cloud II was sent to disarm him. When Cloud II lunged at Kelly, he swung around and shot him behind his head. Cloud II died at the scene.
Const. Carson shot Kelly in the shoulder as he was fleeing, and he was shortly captured.
Mr. Carson attended the exhumation ceremony. I had the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity of visiting with Mr. Carson recently and a memory I will never forget of his recounting the story. What an amazing dog Cloud II was. His cremated remains will be interred in a special ceremony in Orillia at a later date.
(excerpts from North Bay Nugget, Gord Young, T.Hopper, National Post, and my conversation with Mr. Carson)