Yesterday, in Moncton NB, three members of the RCMP, Constables all, were laid to rest with members of the Mounties and many other Police Department representatives present to pay honor. The three were gunned down while performing their duty. Each left grieving families.
As a Canadian, I grieve also. I grieve because they lost their lives while defending the law of the land. I grieve because they did not ask to be senselessly slain. I grieve because, while they most surely knew they risked life daily, they did not expect to be killed doing their duty to protect fellow Canadians. I grieve.
In the course of a previous career as a broadcast journalist, I had many occasions to encounter and become friends with some members of the RCMP. For example, while on assignments in Price George BC I had contact with Mounties on a nearly daily basis. I checked in with desk commanders every morning at two detachments, to discover what calls they contended with during over-night hours. Never once was I challenged by a member about my responsibility to let the people know what was going on in town. I was given what information could be given within the constraints of on-going investigations. I was invited by patrol members and approved by watch commanders to ‘ride-along’ on daylight and dark shifts so that I could better understand what members faced on a daily basis. As a result I formed a lasting respect for members of the RCMP.
In recent years that respect has taken the form of including a retired Mountie character in my novel The Chechen’s Revenge. Cpl. Ryan McLeod (Ret.) is my Assistant Chief Investigator of the Canadian Anti-terrorism Service. He has the respect of Chief Investigator Sean-Guy O’Dwyer-Lariviere, due to his expertise as a policeman well trained to handle all aspects of police work. Ryan McLeod is trusted to run the HQ office in the absence of Sean-Guy.
In my second novel, currently under construction (A Prairie Vendetta), a female member of the RCMP assigned to Criminal Investigations at the Battleford SK detachments, will figure prominently in the terrorist investigations of Sean-Guy and his team members. Her story and dedication are consistent with those of real-life members of the RCMP, just like those who gave their lives so recently and tragically.
I salute the surviving members of the RCMP as they seek to reconcile the loss of three of their fellow officers. I stand with all Canadians who today had the decency to stand and pay honor to those three who were slain.
Good reading friends and thanks for your support.
Ron Stotyn, PhD