Major League Baseball sends its DOGNY statue to the plate

"MAJOR," a unique life-size sculpture of a Search and Rescue Dog, was unveiled on Monday, September 17, on the plaza of 245 Park Avenue, headquarters to Major League Baseball, as part of the American Kennel Club's DOGNY Project.

The dog was created by Major League Baseball Design Services, with art direction by Claudia Vosper, as part of the program commemorating the valiant efforts of Search and Rescue Dogs and their handlers on September 11.

Vibrant colors found in traditional comic book art are used as the characters are displayed performing super athletic feats. The Astroturf on which the dog is standing, was donated by the Brooklyn Cyclones Baseball Club. On the body of MAJOR is a button that, when pressed, plays "Take Me Out To The Ballgame." The theme of the decoupage dog is that of Major League Baseball's 2002 Playoffs and World Series.

"The tireless efforts of the Search and Rescue Dogs and their handlers became so apparent during September 11th and the days following," said Tim Brosnan, Vice President Business. "Their dedication as they searched for victims has touched us all and we are delighted to be able to honor them in this way."

On hand from the NYPD Canine Unit were Sgt. John Ryan and his partner, Justice; Officer Frank Vollaro and his partner, Samson; and Gail Goglia, of the NYPD Police Foundation. Also attending were David Frei from the American Kennel Club, spokesman for DOGNY, and Tom Brasuell, Vice President Community Affairs for MLB.

"We're thrilled with the response that we have received from the great American pastime of baseball," said Frei. "The Yankees, the Mets and now the Major League Baseball office have all stepped up to give their support of this great project, and we thank them."

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NYPD K9 teams Sgt. John Ryan and Justice, and Officer Frank Vollaro and Samson.

From left: Officer Frank Vollaro and Samson, AKC's David Frei, Major League Baseball's Tim Brosnan and Tom Brasuell, Gail Goglia (hidden) of the Police Foundation, Sgt. John Ryan and Justice.