Long-time Mounties, dedicated municipal employees, quick-thinking kids, sharp-nosed dogs and good Samaritans were all among those recognized at the Upper Fraser Valley Regional Detachment's (UFVRD) annual Recognizing Excellence awards ceremony Thursday at the Chilliwack Cultural Centre.
In her first public appearance as the UFVRD's new officer in charge, Insp. Deanne Burleigh quickly found her new job had gone to the dogs-in particular a half-dozen police dogs and their handlers, who were among those recognized with Officer In Charge (OIC) awards.
The members of the Integrated Police Dog Service-which includes both local Mounties and Abbotsford Police Department K-9s and officers-were honoured for "playing a trememdous role in reducing crime," Sgt. JD Fredette told the audience as Burleigh honoured the dogs and their handlers on stage.
"The IPDS provides exceptional and invaluable service to the members of the Upper Fraser Valley Regional Detachment and the community we serve. They attend all types of crime and are instrumental in the arrest of suspects responsible for property crimes, robberies . . . drug trafficking, etc.," said Fredette. "They have also been responsible for locating missing persons, especially the vulnerable members of the community."
Burleigh also recognized dozens of others-both Mounties and civillians. In the case of local officers, it was often the first time Burleigh had met them.
Among those receiving an OIC award was Robert Main, a civillian who bought a pair of pieces of local art last year only to later recognize them in news stories about their theft from a Chilliwack couple. Although it put him out of pocket, Main quickly turned over the items to police; they were subsequently returned to their grateful owners.
Longtime volunteers Doug Nor-dick, Betty Colk and Mary Askey also received awards, as did a number of City of Chilliwack employees, who were honoured for going above and beyond the call of duty to help in the arrest of a sexual assault suspect.
Evan Raap, the young boy whose 9-1-1 call helped save his grandfather's life late last year, was also honoured, as was the 9-1-1 operator who helped direct emergency crews to Raap's vehicle.