RCMP Veterans honour serving RCMP members at 150th anniversary gala

B.C., Island District

2023-02-02 10:38 PST

2023 marks 150 years that the RCMP has been serving the citizens of Canada with pride and professionalism. The RCMP has evolved from its humble beginnings patrolling the North West Territories of Canada on horseback to becoming a modern world-renowned policing agency engaged in both domestic and international policing operations.

To commemorate this monumental occasion, The Veterans Association of Victoria honoured both retired and current serving members today with a gala luncheon. The gala was attended by The Lieutenant Governor of British Columbia, The Commissioner of the RCMP, and the Commanding Officer of British Columbia, amongst many other honoured guests.

Dwayne McDonald, the Commanding Officer of British Columbia, Brenda Lucki, The Commissioner of the RCMP, Jane Austen, Lieutenant Governor of Canada, , and Rosemary Bowman, President of the Veterans Association of Victoria.

For many Canadians, a career with the RCMP is intergenerational. Rosemary Bowman, President of the Veterans Association of Victoria and retired RCMP officer describes the RCMP as being a family business. In 1976 she graduated from Depot Division with her brother Constable PL Backus. They were the first brother and sister team to successfully graduate from the RCMP Academy together. This family legacy was passed onto her nephew who also worked for the RCMP. As the RCMP has always been an important part of her family, Rosemary continues to recognize and support RCMP officers after retirement.

As retired members of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, the Veteran’s Association of Victoria fully supports our local area Detachments and are grateful for the important legacy we have left behind and upon which our Members are building on today. It is important to us to let them know we care, said Rosemary Bowman, President of the Veterans Association of Victoria.

150 years of policing in Canada has produced more than 150 unique policing jobs within the organization. A career with the RCMP is truly an adventure unlike any other. In addition to being the national police service of Canada, the RCMP contributes on the world stage by providing officers to assist in training other police services internationally as well as assisting in international peacekeeping missions overseas.

Policing has changed a tremendous amount during the nearly five decades I’ve been a member of the RCMP. In the beginning it was pen, paper, a gun and a radio and hit the road to take calls and prevent crime. Now the police car is virtually an office. I’ve worked with a lot of dedicated and special people and made some great friends along the way, says S/Sgt Wayne Conley, Detachment Commander of the Sidney/North Saanich RCMP Detachment. It is an absolute privilege to serve our communities and on this RCMP Appreciation Day occasion, I’m especially proud of the services our police officers deliver to our citizens.

Joan Morris and Cst. Brewer

To honour the ongoing contributions and sacrifices made by RCMP officers, February 1, 2020 was proclaimed to be Royal Canadian Mounted Police Appreciation Day by the BC Provincial Government. This date also reflects the day that Parliament voted to form the national police service which has come to be known as the RCMP by merging the North West Mounted Police with the Dominion Police of Eastern Canada in 1920.

February 1st 2023 is be a date where current serving RCMP members and Veterans alike reflect on our historic past and look toward the future of serving all Canadians.

Released by:

Cpl Andres Sanchez
Media Relations Officer
Sidney North Saanich RCMP

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