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On Monday, November 23, 2015, K9 Officer Ryan Copeland of the McFarland, WI Police Department was killed in an on-duty squad collision with a DNR pickup truck while on his way to pick up his K9 partner Boris. 

Officer Copeland was a three year veteran of the McFarland Police Department, having previously served in the US Army Special Forces and completed several deployments overseas.  Officer Copeland and Boris were McFarland's first police canine team.

In 2017, the Wisconsin Law Enforcement Canine Handler Association, under the leadership of Board Member Robert Zill, Deputy with the Winnebago County Sheriff's Office, created a segregated fund to support the Ryan Copeland Memorial Grant.  

The Ryan Copeland Memorial Grant is awarded annually in the amount of $1,000 to to a Law Enforcement Agency in the State of Wisconsin that justifies a need for funds to support their current K9 program, or is in the process of establishing a new K9 program.  The grant recipient is chosen by Officer Copeland's wife, Amanda Copeland Jones.

All grant applications are due by August 15th of each calendar year, with the recipient announced at WLECHA's annual conference in October.  If your agency would like to apply for the grant, please fill out the form by clicking on the link below.

WLECHA is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization and donations to our Association are tax deductible to extent allowed by IRS.  If you would like to make a donation to support the Ryan Copeland Memorial Grant, please click the Paypal button above (all major credit cards accepted).

Grant Receipients

2023 - Mount Horeb Police Department
2022 - Manitowoc County Sheriff's Office
2021 - Richland Center Police Department
2020 - Saint Francis Police Department

2019 - Whitewater Police Department
2018 - Nekoosa Police Department
2017 - Fox Crossing Police Department

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