UGA VI laid to rest in Sanford Stadium

ATHENS – A small group of Uga VI's closest friends and human family gathered Monday afternoon in Sanford Stadium to say goodbye to the most recent of Georgia's English bulldog mascots.

About 40 people, plus more than a dozen media members, came out for the brief ceremony for the 9-year-old dog who died Friday. Uga VI's body was driven across the Sanford Stadium field in his kennel while the familiar strains of "The Battle Hymn of the Republic" played.

Uga VI's kennel was placed in front of wreaths and draped with his jersey and collar during the ceremony, which was opened by university president Michael Adams.

"Some people might think it light-hearted to pay this much attention to the passing of an animal, but we've come today I think, for three reasons," said Adams, who went on to talk about Uga's role as a symbol for the school, a unifying element for the alumni and a family pet for the Seiler family of Savannah.

"This has been a wonderful period in the history of the University of Georgia, and I personally think that this particular dog has exemplified that strength and that tenacity in a wonderful way," Adams said.

Uga VI served from 1999 through the 2007 season.

Rev. Claude McBride, the longtime and former football team chaplain, officiated the service and ended his prayer by saying, "Sic ‘em, Uga. Woof, woof. Amen."

Sonny Seiler, the dog's owner, spoke to members of the media after the service and said the family has several dogs available which could become Uga VII, but no decision has been made.

"Sometimes, we didn't have a decision to make," he said. "This time we have some alternatives."

Uga VI was later interred in a private ceremony, leaving the school with pre-prepared sites for six more dogs before another resting place will have to be found.

Uga VI's five predeccesors all have epitaphs on their tombs, starting with Uga I's "Damn Good Dog," but nothing has been planned for this Dog, Seiler said.

"His record speaks for itself," Seiler said.

Georgia's football team was 87-27 during Uga VI's term, making him the winningest of the mascots.

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