Richard J. Zika, 1924-1999 [RG1699.AM]


RG1699.AM:  Richard J. Zika, 1924-1999

Scrapbook:  1943-1948, 1972-1988

Detroit, Mich. and Fort Robinson, Neb.:  Soldier in War Dog Detachment Unit

Size:  1 volume and 1 reel of microfilm


Richard J. Zika, a resident of Detroit, Michigan, served in the War Dog Detachment (WDD) – China – Burma – Indian (CBI) theatre during World War II. Formed in October of 1943 at the War Dog Reception and Training Center, San Carlos, California, the unit was first known as the Casual Dog Detachment. Comprised of 100 soldiers and their dogs, the group was made up of smaller units from the four K-9 camps around the country: Fort Robinson, Nebraska; Cat Island, Mississippi; Front Royal, Virginia; and San Carlos, California. Advanced training had been in attack-sentry, interior guard, patrol, and scout work.

On January 24, 1944, the unit boarded the SS Benjamin Ide Wheeler. It arrived in Calcutta, India on April 4, 1944 and was placed in Kanchrapara for several weeks giving demonstrations of sentry and scout work. The men and dogs proved their worth as guards of the Calcutta supply dump. Forty-three teams were then sent to Ramghar, detached to the 475th Infantry for the push into Burma. The rest were shipped to Assam for sentry and interior guard work at the many air strips, ammo dumps, and Signal Corps outposts in the area.


This collection consists of one scrapbook dating from ca. 1943-1948, 1972-1988. The scrapbook contains a variety of materials relating to the training and assignments of the War Dog Detachment (WDD) in the China-Burma-India (CBI) theatre during World War II. Included are photographs, diary entries, letters, and clippings compiled by Richard J. Zika to produce a history of the K-9 corps. Of particular interest are the photographs and supplementary materials pertaining to the war dog training program at Fort Robinson, Nebraska. Additional photographs and write-ups in the collection relate to reunions held by veterans of the WDD-CBI in the 1970s and 1980s.

Note: This collection is also available on microfilm.


Scrapbook, 1943-1948, 1972-1988


Subject headings:

Dogs — Military

Fort Robinson (Neb.) — History

U.S. Army War Dog Detachment (WDD)

World War, 1939-1945

Zika, Richard J., 1924-1999


AIP/law                   12-1988

Revised TMM        05-24-2007; 06-07-2018

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