Service tribute to honor Ronceverte’s K-9 dog, Jake



The Ronceverte Police Department lost a valued member of their force on Aug. 1 when K-9 dog, Jake, passed away.

Jake, who lived to be 13 years old, was an active member of the force for five years. According to handler Chief JR Byer, who spoke during the Monday night city council meeting, over the course of his career, Jake was responsible for the seizure of a quarter of a million dollars worth of illegal drugs. He was also valuable in securing lost or missing persons.

The beloved German Shepard lived with Byer and his family, including daughter Tracy. Jake and Tracy were especially close, Crystal Byer said. When it came time for Jake to retire, a new family was found and Jake gained a second special girl to care for, Ali Montie. The presentation of Jake’s certificate of commendation was originally planned to include Jake, but he passed away before that could happen.

“We all know how it feels when a beloved pet passes away,” said Smith. “Jake was Ali’s first love,” said her mother. “He was extremely special.”

In other business:

  • Two Boy Scout troops and a Campfire Girls troop were bussed to town last week to do repair work at the cemetery and the L & R Trail, said the mayor. The city welcomed them and thanked them for their efforts.
  • On Sept. 1, the Day Report Center will open their doors for business after weeks of upgrading construction work on the bank building housing the center. Twenty employees will handle up to 60 clients a week, said Smith. Ronceverte will benefit from several community projects the Day Center clients will generate.
  • Waste water related business dominated the bulk of the Monday night meeting, including a second reading and public hearing for an ordinance, required by the West Virginia Department of Health, to provide for the control of contaminated water and keep it from flowing back into the system, and also to protect wells within the service area of the city.

Dunn Engineering consultant Eric Hartwell stated the waste water plant is substantially completed with its final treatment processing date rapidly approaching. “After only 90 days since the main service completion date in July, the plant is already producing significant result on the river,” said engineer Fred Hypes.

  • The CSX bridge spanning the railroad tracks has long been in need of repairs, but without an engineer’s assessment and report, repair bids for the bridge cannot be made, said City Administrator Reba Mohler. City council voted to advertise to hire a general engineer for the city to keep on retainer. Smith said there are numerous projects on hold because Ronceverte has had no one available to properly assess the work requirements.
  • Mohler said Congressman Evan Jenkins’ representative will be visiting in Ronceverte on August 29 from 2-3 p.m. at City Hall. Citizens are urged to attend with any questions or concerns for Jenkins.