London’s K-9 unit named parade grand marshals

Officer Mike Combs, K-9 officer with the London Police Department, and Ygor, the department’s first canine officer, have been named grand marshals of the 2024 London Strawberry Festival parade.

(Posted June 18, 2024)

By Kristy Zurbrick, Madison Editor

The London Strawberry Festival is honoring a law enforcement team as this year’s parade grand marshals.

Officer Mike Combs, K-9 officer with the London Police Department, and Ygor, the department’s first canine officer, will lead the parade on June 22 at 4 p.m.

Ygor, an 8-year-old Belgian Malinois, retired from the police department on June 13 after seven years of service. He and Combs were partners throughout that time.

“We couldn’t have asked for a better first dog to serve the city of London,” Combs said. “His obedience and his drive to work was just phenomenal. He was the type of dog you could take into the schools and let kids pet him and pull on his tail all day, but five minutes later he could apprehend a suspect. He was perfect for the K-9 program.”

In 2023 alone, Ygor was called out on dozens of narcotic searches, assisted with three apprehensions of violent subjects, conducted two building searches, assisted other agencies inside and outside the city and county, and performed four demonstrations for school functions.

While he is now retired, Ygor continues to live with Combs as a family pet, along with the family’s Weimaraner and the police department’s newly certified K-9, Cento, another Belgian Malinois. Combs and Cento recently wrapped up training and the certification process.

Combs has been a police officer for 16 years, all with the London department. He said he had always wanted to work in law enforcement.

“I come from a military family. It has been my mindset my entire life,” he said.

In addition to being London’s K-9 unit handler/officer, Combs has served as a certified defensive tactics instructor, a firearms instructor, and the city’s first field training officer.

He and his wife, Kenna, have two children who graduated from London High School–son Dylan who is now serving in the U.S. Army and daughter Raighen who is studying nursing and playing volleyball at Clark State Community College. Kenna serves as the city auditor.

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