Support for Mounties has been overwhelming says Digby staff sergeant

Jonathan Riley, Digby Courier
Published on June 9, 2014

Digby RCMP Const. Jennifer Neufeld is getting her serge and boots cleaned up as she and two other members from Digby prepare to take part in the RCMP funeral in Moncton on Tuesday.

©Jonathan Riley - TC Media

Digby RCMP Staff Sergeant Rocky Calhoun says the outpouring of support for the RCMP in the wake of the deaths in Moncton has been overwhelming.

People he says have called, some have stopped by the detachment just to talk, some have dropped off flowers or cards, some even tied flowers to the flagpole outside.

Tonight at the big Tim Horton’s on Victoria Street people are planning to gather at 6:30 p.m., wearing red, to show their support for the members of the national police force.

People have been looking for a way to show their support here after a man in Moncton carrying large firearms and wearing camo shot and killed Codiac RCMP Constables Fabrice Gevaudan, Douglas Larche and Dave Ross on Wednesday, June 4.

Justin Bourque has been charged with three counts of first-degree murder and two counts of attempted murder involving two other officers wounded in the incident.

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Calhoun says his officers are all handling the deaths in Moncton in different ways.

“It brings a new awareness of the danger that is out there, every day we go on shift, every time we called out, “ he said. “I notice a subdued atmosphere among the members but we still have to go to work like we do every day and respond to calls.”

The staff sergeant says the community’s kindness and thoughtfulness has helped.

The staff sergeant he told his officers early on that the community does support them.

“I told them in tragedies like these the community rallies behind us with prayer and condolences,” he said. “And they did.”

The staff sergeant was so impressed by that support, he has written a thank you letter, attached below.

Digby members of the RCMP are also offering support to the Moncton detachment.

Many here know Constable Rick Long who left Digby to serve in Moncton.

Staff sergeant Calhoun asked for volunteers to work in Moncton for the next two weeks.

“Several stepped forward,” he said.

The two selected are already working there.

Another three members from this detachment are headed to Moncton tomorrow Tuesday, June 10 to take part in the funeral for the three officers.

The staff sergeant says they have postponed some training workshops and courses to free up members schedules and a change of command ceremony for Halifax has been cancelled.

Jaynes Funeral Home also has a book of condolences at their funeral homes in Digby and Weymouth, which they are encouraging the public to stop by and sign.

Letter to the editor

On behalf of the members and staff at the Digby RCMP Detachment I would like to take this moment to extend my greatest thanks to the members of the communities that we serve here.

The overwhelming support that you have shown us during this difficult time has not gone unnoticed. Not only have people come to the detachment but we have been stopped in the streets by those of you simply wishing to say they care and are so sorry for what happened to our fellow officers in Moncton. This has meant a great deal to the officers and staff alike. All I can say is a simply " Thank You ".

Rocky Calhoun, Staff Sergeant, Digby