If you’re a member of any law enforcement effort in North America these days you’re not exactly living the dream when it comes to respect.
Stories of corruption and abuse have littered the news the past couple of years with well-known cities like Ferguson and Baltimore fighting off large-scale riots as a result.
On social media it has become the norm to talk about police officers like they are ALL abusive, power-hungry brutes – a label that is a sad contrast to the post 9/11 world.
In Richmond last week, RCMP Corporal Kevin Krygier and his team put on a display that reminded many that the vast majority of our nation’s force are here for much more than crime and punishment. They are here for us.
This particular story started at Tait Elementary School, where Mike Ciu is a fourth-grade student with Down Syndrome. When Krygier visited the school this winter he met Mike, who helped give the corporal a tour of his school.
Soon after, Mike’s educational assistant, Marci Hammer, sent Krygier a video of Mike explaining that when he grew up he dreamed of being a police officer.
“I was so touched, I decided to make his dream a reality,” Krygier explained of what came next.
Krygier rallied his troops, connected with Hammer, started making some plans and put together an assembly presentation for Mike that blew his whole school away.
That day Mike Ciu was named an honorary Police Chief, given a uniform and marched into the gym with his new peers to roaring cheers from his younger peers. It was a day he and his family won’t soon forget.
While the gesture turned into a nice community story, it was also a reminder that many of our uniformed defenders of the law are genuinely here to keep us safe AND make our lives better. So next time you hear a story of an officer abusing his power, share this one of our officers spreading the glory instead.
“I joined the RCMP to make a difference in people’s lives,” Krygier said. “I have done many things as part of the RCMP – some I have had to do and they have been sad and difficult. But this was so enjoyable for me and my colleagues. It took a lot of collaboration to make it happen, but comparably, it was easy and very meaningful for all of us who were involved.”
The event was captured on CTV News HERE.