At Fort Battleford on Thursday afternoon, an honours and recognition ceremony was held in which a number of employees from the RCMP received awards.
These included members of Battlefords RCMP detachment as well as those from the surrounding area. Lt. Gov. Vaughn Solomon Schofield as well as F Division commanding officer Brenda Butterworth-Carr presided over the awarding of honours.
This event was in conjunction with National Police Week and served as an opportunity to recognize the contribution individual RCMP members made in carrying out their duties. In her remarks, Schofield said the awards "represent the respect of your colleagues and the gratitude of a nation."
Also awarded at the event were a number of St. John's Ambulance Life Saving Awards going to those who used first-aid skills to save a life.
The list of honours began with long-service Awards:
35 years: S/Sgt. Anthony Shumilak, whose tenure with the RCMP included stints in the Battlefords;
25 years: Civilian member Murray Beavers, also of Battlefords detachment;
20 years: Sgt. Brent Olberg, who served in the Battlefords and is now with Saskatoon major crimes division;
30 years: Gertrude Maxwell (not in attendance at the ceremony).
The Commanding Officer's Commendation was presented by Butterworth-Carr, to the following RCMP officers for acts of bravery:
Cst. Peter Chandler, for his efforts rescuing an individual from a submerged overturned vehicle off of Highway 40;
Cst. Brenda Diachuk and Cst. Daniel Dempster, for their bravery in rescuing a man who was sleeping in a burning motel; and
Cst. Colby Rennie who, in July 2015 in a call to Moosomin First Nation, swam out into a deep slough to bring an intoxicated individual back to shore and safety in a life-saving rescue.
The Commanding Officer's Certificate of Appreciation was presented by Butterworth-Carr for bravery, volunteer activities, service or any act deemed innovative and unique and outside what the member would normally be expected to do:
Cpl. Jeremy Anderson and S/Sgt. Darcy Woolfitt of Battlefords RCMP for their successful handling and resolution of a tense eight-hour police standoff in North Battleford in January 2015 in which the members successfully negotiated a surrender, with the suspect taken into custody;
Cst. Kaelen Blacklock, also awarded in relation to a July 2015 Moosomin First Nation incident. She entered the deep slough to try to coax the intoxicated individual back to shore and the suspect was ultimately rescued;
Presented by Lt.-Gov. Schofield were St. John's Ambulance Life Saving Awards to three individuals in connection to two separate incidents.
Oct. 24, 2014, Cst. Doug Lachapelle he teamed up with other members and used his first aid skills to save the life of a woman found unconscious in a North Battleford restaurant. He performed CPR until the woman was able to breathe on her own and stayed with her until emergency response arrived.
Cst. Kyle Vanditmars and Chelsy Villeneuve used first aid skills in resuscitating an individual near Meadow Lake on May 20, 2015 along Highway 55 near a weigh station. Cst. Vanditmars and Villeneuve, an off-duty nurse, worked as a team with two other people to perform life-saving CPR and first aid until EMS arrived.