Wojtek was a Syrian brown bear, and he was a private in the Polish army during World War II. His official duty was passing ammunition along to supply the guns. However, in between raids, Wojtek enjoyed drinking beer, eating cigarettes and wrestling with the men of 22nd Artillery Supply Company. Once, he even found an enemy soldier who was spying for a raiding party.
A local Iranian boy found Wojtek when he was less than a year old, and sold it to the nearby Polish Army. Before too long, he could properly salute when greeted and enjoyed the friendliness of all the men.
He was like a big dog that was everyone’s favorite pet. When the Company was deployed to Italy, the only way to take Wojtek on the ship was to officially enlist him. He was given a name, rank and number. Wojtek survived the war and lived until he was 22 at the Edinburgh Zoo.