Semper K9 is proud to announce the acceptance of Spader into our Service Dogs for Veterans Program. Spader is an Airedale Lab mix donated by Manocrest Kennels. Spader is named in memory of Lieutenant Colonel Silvio E. Gasperini, US Army. LTC Gasperini was a member of the 26th Infantry in WWII, nicknamed the ‘Blue Spaders.’

LTC. Gasperini was born Jan. 5, 1918, in Stambaugh, Mich., and had lived in Colorado Springs since 1948.  Lt. Col. Gasperini graduated from West Point in 1940. He also graduated from the Command and General Staff College, Fort Leavenworth, Kan., and received a master’s from the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs.

LTC. Gasperini served in the Army between 1940 and 1966. He was a prisoner of the Japanese during the fall of the Philippine Islands in 1942 and was held as a Prisoner of War until his return to U.S. Military control at the end of hostilities in 1945. LTC. Gasperini also survived the Bataan Death March in April of 1942. After retiring from the Army, he was a men’s clothing manager at Abercrombie & Fitch for 11 years. He was also president of the Italian-American Cultural Club of Colorado Springs and a member of the Ex-POW Association, Pikes Peak West Point Club and the Retired Officers Association. He passed August 28, 1986, in Colorado Springs, CO, and is buried at Fort Logan National Cemetery.

If you would like to make a gift in honor of Lieutenant Colonel Silvio E. Gasperini to benefit Semper K9’s Blue Spader’s training & expenses, please visit


Royal & Spader