John Corona and his dog, Ciro, get noticed wherever they go, but Ciro always seems to steal the show.
Corona and Ciro, the K-9 drug prevention officer and dog at the Harlingen Consolidated Independent School District, work daily with each campus to keep them drug free. Their daily duties can include anything from campus visits to assisting with additional security.
“He’s the star wherever he goes, and I am just his sidekick,” Corona said. “If he is not with me during a campus visit, students always ask where he is.”
During Red Ribbon Week, Corona and Ciro make it a priority to visit campuses and speak with the students about the importance of being drug-free. The presentation allows Ciro to receive a proper introduction to the students, and for inquiring minds to ask any questions they may have for the duo, Corona said.
“They always want to know how old he is,” Corona said. “ I let them know that he turned two in May, and he is still relatively young.”
Corona attributes his stepdad as one of the reasons he went into the business of K-9 drug-prevention, he said.
“My stepdad would bring his dog home at the end of the day,” Corona said. “We would talk about what would happen during the day and I got interested.”
Like the man who inspired him, Corona now gets to bring his dog home after work.
“He’s like my dog,” Corona said. “ We work together and we are close. We are like partners.”
Corona has been with HCISD for two years, and prior to starting he graduated from the University of Texas Pan-American with a degree in criminal justice. He has also worked as a freelance private K-9 officer and for personal security companies.