How Bingo the Dog Became the Mascot of a Platoon


With the Veteran’s Day holiday just last week, many of us took the time to commemorate the war vets and soldiers who have fought for our great country. Many of them risked their lives and have represented the United States with great valor, and sometimes with our busy and hectic lives, we tend to forget about them and is such a shame. Did you know that dogs also play an integral part of fighting for our country? Aside from the soldiers that serve our country, there are also those brave dogs who have gone alongside the soldiers in a time of war. One such dog is a canine named Bingo, who not only was part of the crew, but he was also a mascot for his platoon in World War II!

David Linden, who works for Bloomberg, told the New York Post about his grandfather’s dog, Bingo, who served with him during WWII. Growing up, Linden recalls his grandpa telling him and his brothers stories about the canine whom he rescued on an island during a stopover during WWII. Linden’s grandpa talked about how the dog was the platoon’s mascot and would basically follow him wherever he went on the ship, but Linden and his brothers always assumed that their grandfather was exaggerating.

“Did he rescue the dog? Sure, but I didn’t really believe that the dog could have accompanied him, let alone be a ‘mascot’ for the crew of the USS Hancock. Just my grandfather telling his story in a playful way,” Linden explained.

It’s only natural that the kids didn’t believe everything their granddad said, but come to find out years and years later that he was not exaggerating! Just a few years ago, Linden was searching for crew photos with an airline carrier and stumbled upon a photo that would prove his grandfather’s truth: a black and white photo of the ordnance men on a flight deck.

Linden said: “If you look carefully, you can see a little Jack Russell terrier in the front row, with a handsome man named Emanuel Rubenstein, my grandfather, right behind him, holding the dog in place. The caption of the photo reads: V-3 Division Aviation Ordnancemen with ‘Bingo’ The Ship’s Mascot.”

It just goes to show you that grandparents don’t always exaggerate about those kinds of details and that dogs definitely hold a special place, even when it comes to going into battle.

(Photo Source: USS Hancock Crew Gallery)

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