Fallen Mountie described as joyful and witty brother, husband, father
Published Monday, January 26, 2015 12:58PM MST Last Updated Monday, January 26, 2015 7:42PM MST
More than a week after he was shot in the line of duty, a St. Albert RCMP officer was honoured in a procession through St. Albert – followed by a regimental funeral.
Just after noon on Monday, January 26, the funeral procession for Const. David Wynn began – thousands of police officers and a riderless horse joined the hearse carrying Const. Wynn along Poirier Avenue, ending at the site of Wynn’s funeral at Servus Place. RCMP said 800 people lined the route to watch.
A total of about 2,000 law enforcement and first responders from throughout North America and RCMP detachments across Canada marched in unison during the procession – including pipers and drummers from across the country.
“It’s so wonderful to see all the pipers and drummers from different bands here,” Sgt. Milt McCrea, 77, with the RCMP Regimental Pipe Band said Monday.
Officers in the procession included two members from Chicago, who belong to the organization ‘Brotherhood for the Fallen’.
“Our organization asks for volunteers and we volunteered to come up here,” Officer Brian Kerstien with the Chicago PD said.
For Kerstien, it didn’t matter that they never met Wynn.
“It can happen to anyone of us at any given time, just doing our job,” Kerstien said.
Inside, Servus Place was filled with abotu 5,800 people - many of them officers from the RCMP, and other police organizations - Wynn's wife Shelly MacInnis-Wynn and their three sons were seated in the front row.
RCMP Assistant Commissioner Marianne Ryan, along with RCMP Commissioner Bob Paulson were in attendance, and both spoke at the ceremony.
“Dave was fearless, the courage he brought to the execution of his duty is amplified that he did so on behalf of others,” Paulson said.
Prime Minister Stephen Harper and Premier Jim Prentice along with St. Albert mayor Nolan Crouse were also there.
Mona Wynn, Const. David Wynn’s sister, delivered the eulogy described her brother as “an ordinary man with an extraordinary capacity” to change the world around him. She encouraged mourners to live the way she said Wynn would want them to – to enjoy life, to contribute to the world and never hold a grudge.
“David would want us to forgive, he was a peaceful man, he didn’t have the time to even notice the reason for a grudge, much less hold one, he knew there were much better things to hold on to, so that’s what he did,” Wynn said.
“David would want us to find joy.”
Wynn said her brother’s organs and tissue were donated, and the family has learned they will help as many as 35 people.
Representing Wynn’s roots in eastern Canada and Alberta, The Rankin Family and Paul Brandt performed songs during the ceremony.
With files from Bill Fortier, Susan Amerongen and The Canadian Press