Jack to the Rescue
Swansea Jack was a black retriever dog born in 1930. During his life he was recorded as having saved the lives of 27 people and two dogs from drowning in Swansea docks. As a puppy his first owner was Taulford Davies and they would spend a lot of time in Park Llewelyn where Jack spent his time chasing Ducks, although he was originally frightened of the water. Taulford Davies passed him onto William Thomas who started to discipline and train Jack. Jack was encouraged to play with local boys swimming in the water around Swansea Docks. No longer afraid of the water on 1st June 1931 seeing that there was a young boy in trouble jumped into the water and pulled the boy to the waters edge saving his life. Over the next six years, Jack would repeat these actions time and again saving the lives of another 26 people and two dogs. Jack is the most decorated dog of all time in the United Kingdom having received numerous awards for bravery including two bronze medals equivalent to VC Cross. His actions and bravery were well recorded in local and national newspapers of the day. At the age of seven, Jack died after consuming rat poison, this made the people of Swansea very angry and sad. Jack’s remains are buried on the promenade opposite St Helens Rugby ground on Mumbles Road. An epitaph has been erected on the site to honour Jack’s bravery.
The epitaph reads:
“Erected to the memory of Swansea Jack, the brave retriever who saved 27 human lives and two canine lives from drowning. Loved and mourned by dog lovers. Died 2nd October 1937 aged 7 years.
Ne’er had mankind more a faithful friend than thou who oft thy life didst lend to save some human soul from death.
Owner and trainer Wm Thomas”.