Above: Khyree Seymour has her photo taken with Constable Cole McCaugherty. – Stephen Dafoe Photo
by Stephen Dafoe
The Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) Morinville Detachment and Sturgeon Victim Services (SVS) united their efforts on Saturday, Sept. 16, for an afternoon barbecue and open house to recognize the RCMP’s 150th anniversary and SVS’s partnership in assisting them and the community for many years.
The four-hour event was well attended throughout the day and gave area residents the opportunity to enjoy some barbecue food and snacks, speak with members, and take a close look at some of the detachment’s vehicles.
Sturgeon Victim Services, RCMP, and Morinville Enforcement Services all had displays and personnel on hand. Additionally, there was a bit of Red Serge on display with an appearance from Safety Bear and Constable Cole Mccaugherty in the traditional RCMP uniform.
The Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) celebrates its 150th anniversary in 2023, marking a century and a half of dedicated service to Canada. Established on May 23, 1873, the RCMP has played a pivotal role in maintaining law and order, upholding justice, and ensuring the safety and security of the nation.
Staff Sergeant Chris Palfy, who swapped his normal duties to grill burgers on Saturday, said it was a great day.
“We’re celebrating 150 years of the RCMP in Canada. There are lots of celebrations going on throughout the province, and we’re proud to be here and proud to serve our community,” Palfy said.
The Staff Sergeant, who has called the Morinville RCMP Detachment home since March of 2018, is scheduled to retire on Nov. 14, with his last day in the office on Oct. 13.
“I’ve done 26 years. Morinville, I can say, has been the highlight of my career,” he said. “I’ve loved every moment of it, but it’s time to move on to something else.”
Palfy said in his time in Morinville, he feels that his focus has been on delivering better service to the community and helping his fellow officers when they are struggling with mental health or medical issues.
The staff sergeant said the RCMP’s relationship with Sturgeon Victim Services is instrumental in their work.
“I don’t think we’d be able to do what we do without them,” Palfy said. “Absolutely fantastic bunch of people. Their only speed is give, give, give.”
Sturgeon Victim Services is a community-based organization dedicated to supporting and assisting victims of crime and trauma in the Sturgeon County region. Their mission is to empower individuals who have experienced crime or traumatic events by offering emotional support, practical guidance, and access to resources that can help them cope and recover.
SVS Executive Director Lis Melvin said she and SVS were pleased to participate in the anniversary event. “This is a big deal because it is celebrating partnerships between the RCMP, Peace Officers, Victim Services and the community,” Melvin said. “Together, this is how we make a safer community.”
Outside Morinville, many detachments held celebrations. Redwater held one earlier this year, and The Alberta RCMP and the Edmonton Corn Maze held an RCMP Day at the Maze event on Saturday, Sept. 16, as well.
This year’s maze was shaped like a Mountie saluting. Additionally, the Alberta RCMP’s Police Dog Services and Remotely Piloted Aircraft Systems (drones) were demonstrated at the event.
Those interested in learning more about the RCMP’s 150th can visit www.rcmp-grc.gc.ca/rcmp150.
Morinville Enforcement Services had an information booth with some swag for visitors to take. – Stephen Dafoe Photo
Fiona Brown and younger sister Amelia check out a Morinville Peace Officer vehicle. – Stephen Dafoe Photo
Morinville RCMP Staff Sergeant Chris Palfy kept the burgers grilling at the RCMP 150th Anniversary event in Morinville on Saturday, Sept. 16. – Stephen Dafoe Photo
Morinville RCMP Detachment Sergeant Lew Simms gets ready to greet Safety Bear. – Stephen Dafoe Photo
Morinville RCMP Detachment Sergeant Lew Simms talks to area residents at the event. – Stephen Dafoe Photo
The RCMP 150th Anniversary bbq was well attended throughout its four hours. – Stephen Dafoe Photo