EDITORIAL: Offer thanks
Incredible sadness, renewed and enhanced respect for police officers.
Watching the coverage of the funerals for three slain RCMP officers in Moncton brought many emotions to the surface.
These were husbands, fathers, friends. They leave behind little ones, grieving families, holes that can never be filled in the lives of so many.
RCMP Const. Doug Larche. Const. Fabrice Gevaudan. Const. Dave Ross. May you rest in peace.
Const. Larche was 40 years old. He leaves behind a wife and three little girls. He earned a commendation in 2008 for saving the life of an unconscious baby.
Const. Ross was the married father of a 19-month-old baby. He and his wife were expecting their second child when he was killed.
Const. Gevaudan was originally from France. He leaves behind a wife and stepdaughter. Friends have described him as a man who was careful about what he ate and never touched alcohol.
This week, three Oceanside RCMP officers were taking a break at a downtown Parksville coffee shop. When they got up to leave, a customer looked up from his breakfast and expressed thanks to the officers for the job they do.
Perhaps we all don't do enough of this, expressing appreciation for the men and women who perform such a dangerous job every single day of the year.
Perhaps we take them for granted, or grumble about them when they give us a ticket.
It's easy to lose sight of just what these people do for us, keeping our communities safe and reacting to any number of potentially dangerous incidents every day.
Does it have to take a tragedy of this nature to wake us? It shouldn't, but it does.
Perhaps we can honour the memory of these Moncton police officers, and show our renewed respect for the RCMP in general, by thanking those members we see in Parksville Qualicum Beach in our day-to-day lives. It's not much, but it needs to be said more often, and not just in the wake of a tragedy.
Thank-you, members of the Oceanside RCMP. And we're sorry for your loss.
— Editorial by John Harding