Lucca was a German Shepherd/Belgian Malinoisservice dog who was employed by the United States Marine Corps for 6 years. She was trained to detect explosives. She was deployed twice to Iraq and once to Afghanistan. In her over 400 missions, no human fatalities occurred under her watch. In 2012, while on patrol in Afghanistan, she was injured by an IED blast, necessitating the amputation of her left leg. After recovering at Camp Pendleton, Lucca officially retired in 2012 and was adopted by her original handler, Gunnery Sergeant Chris Willingham.
On 5 April 2016, the People’s Dispensary for Sick Animals (PDSA), a veterinary charity in the United Kingdom, awarded Lucca the Dickin Medal. It is considered to be the animal equivalent of the Victoria Cross, and was the 67th time that the medal has been awarded. This was the first time a U.S. Marine Corps dog was awarded this honour. Lucca also received an unofficial Purple Heart plaque and ribbons from a two-time Marine recipient of the award.