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‘Catie Copley,’ Fairmont Copley’s canine ambassador, has died

(Bill Brett for the Boston Globe)

A celebrity fixture and longtime employee at the Fairmont Copley Plaza, who for years greeted visitors arriving to stay at the luxury hotel in Copley Square, died last week.

Hotel officials on Friday announced the death of Catie Copley, a black Labrador retriever with white speckles at the top and sides of her head. “With the heaviest of hearts,” the hotel wrote on Twitter, “we must share the news that our beloved Catie Copley has passed away. Her paw-some love will be missed by all.”

On Facebook, the hotel said Catie was “an important member of our Fairmont Family and a cherished Boston icon since 2004.”

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For years, Catie was part of the hotel’s Canine Ambassadors program, which allowed hotel guests to spend some personal time with the dog and take her outside.

“Travelers missing their own furry friend or looking for a companion while taking a walk can bring along the resident Fairmont dog for extra security and the comfort of home,” according to the hotel’s program.

The genial Lab had her own e-mail address and was often spotted hanging around in the lobby, where she would bang her tail against the ground as people checked in for a stay.

A person who answered the phone at the dog-friendly hotel Friday said Catie retired a few years ago from the ambassador program, but she still made frequent visits with her caretaker. She also served as a community liaison by participating in neighborhood and charitable events, according to the hotel’s website.

According to a 2008 Globe story about Catie, the Lab began work at the hotel after she was forced to give up her duties as a guide dog due to cataracts.

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Her years in the city made her something of a celebrity among locals and visitors alike, and eventually landed her a starring role in a children’s book.

Dozens of people who interacted with Catie when staying in Boston offered their condolences on Facebook to hotel staff.

“We had the pleasure of walking Catie a few years ago,” one person wrote. “She was a highlight of our stay there.”

A younger Lab, named Carly, is the current canine ambassador at the hotel. The dog enjoys “catching rides on the hotel’s bellcarts and showing guests around her neighborhood.”


Steve Annear can be reached at steve.annear@globe.com. Follow him on Twitter @steveannear.