HICKORY, N.C. — Rony, a K9 with the Hickory Police Department has passed.

The dog served with the department for the past year and was "a great asset in many investigations and a true companion to his handler," Hickory Police's release said.

According to Hickory Police, Rony's death was unexpected -- they did not list the cause of death in the release. 

The Hickory community showing an outpouring of love and support on the post, mourning the loss of the public-servant canine. 

"It is with great sadness that we announce the unexpected passing of K9 Rony," Hickory Police said in a statement, adding, "He will be greatly missed!"

It is with great sadness that we announce the unexpected passing of K9 Rony. Rony has been with our department for the past five years and was a great asset in many investigations and a true...