Regimental honours for brave dog that saved mountaineer’s life in blizzard
Aberdeen Press and Journal Monday 13 May 1935
Betty the Irish Wolfhound was awarded a gallantry medal after saving a stricken mountain climber in the French Alps.
Troops from the 99th Infantry Brigade were sent to rescue a climber who broke his leg while trying to ascend Grand Galibier but couldn’t bring him back down safely in the blizzard conditions.
The rescue party was forced to return to base after two of the team were struck with frostbite.
But regimental mascot Betty refused to leave beleaguered climber Mr Rudelle who lay in freezing agony.
More troopers were sent up the mountain the next day but were beaten back by the icy blasts.
Hope was fading by the third day when the squad reached Rudelle and Betty at nightfall.
The exhausted soldiers were amazed to find the mountaineer still alive with faithful Betty lying across his body protecting him from the elements.
They made the dangerous descent at daybreak with Betty never leaving Rudelle’s side.
On hearing of Betty’s exploits the area general ordered a parade and she was presented with a medal for gallantry which he attached to her collar while the regimental band played.
Betty watched the proceedings with the soldier’s modesty but riled at the attentions of the assembled press snarling furiously at them.