Happy Belated Canada Day!!

It is interesting in this crazy world how information is spread so quickly.  This week-end, Saturday the 10th, I received a message from a retired member who had received, it from a friend, who had received it from a friend and so on.

The original message had started with Dave Rawson of North Vancouver, BC.  He sent a message along with pictures to some of his friends describing a display he made up for Canada Day.  He intended to do a cut out figure of an RCMP member.  Instead, he got the real McCoy, a live Mountie in Review Order. When many were calling for the cancellation of Canada Day, Dave went the extra mile to ensure that he and others got to celebrate the day in style.  

I contacted Dave and asked permission to share the story of his display with the RCMP Veterans’ Association.  He agreed.

“Yes, I would be honoured if you sent my Canada Day article and pictures to the Veterans Newsletter and the RCMP Veterans National website. Please feel free to use the article and pictures wherever you want. 

A quick intro:  I worked for 50 years in the food industry. I retired in 2007 and to fill some of my spare time I signed up to be the Block Watch Captain and I volunteered to look after the traffic circle garden at the end of our block.  It was during this time I made a Christmas poster of Bruce the Moose to display at the circle.  His message was “Be Cool…Don’t Drink and Drive”…that was followed by New Years, Easter, Valentine, Canada Day, Halloween and Covid displays.

Canada Day display this year was very special for several reasons… the weather was amazing, I was able to finish all my additional add ons like Bruce the Moose, more Maple Leaves, the Moose Crossing signs and extra large Canadian Flags.  

But what was really special was Sgt. DeVries, who offered without hesitation, to spend two hours in the morning at the display to make himself available for anyone that wanted a picture with him.  There is nothing more symbolic of Canada than the RCMP parade uniform Red Serge Jacket, blue breeches with yellow stripes and the tall boots – his presents elevated the display to a whole new level. I’m very appreciative of Sgt. DeVries for coming and making the Canada Day display extra special and I know everyone that had their picture taken with Sgt DeVries were thrilled.

It was a long and tiring day, but the positive comments from all those that stopped to take a picture made it all worthwhile.  My next display I’m working on for the traffic circle is BC Day – Aug 2nd.”

Dave Rawson

I thought our membership would enjoy the story and the photos.

Ric Hall 24394-O.1330

Photograph of retired RCMP Superintendent Ric Hall (Source of the photo – Ric Hall’s Photo Collection).


Hi guys,

Canada’s 153 birthday year is now in the history books…. I have a feeling 154 will be a better year (fingers crossed) 

As you can see, I got a little carried away making my Canada Day display, especially the moose who I affectionally call “Bruce the Moose”.  Bruce is cut from 2 – 4×8 sheets of plywood 1 inch thick and I also doubled up on his front and back leg for extra strength.  I had a lot of fun creating, making the stencils, painting and finally putting it all together.   Besides Bruce, I added the Moose Crossing sign, more flags, more red maple leaves and a cheesy patriotic message about how much I love Canada, BC and North Vancouver.

Sergeant Peter DeVries, Reg # 46613, from the North Vancouver Detachment volunteered to join me for a couple hours in the morning at the displaywhich set up in Ray Perrault Park (Grand Blvd W.), North Vancouver.  There is a funny back story on how the Sgt. came to be at the display.  I was planning to cut out a full-size Mountie (6’5” tall) in full size dress uniform.  I had already drawn him out and the next step was to cut him out of plywood.   My neighbour happenedto be over one day and saw the drawing and said before I go to the trouble of cutting it out, I should check with the RCMP office first and see if they have any copyright restrictions. 

The next day I called and as luck would have it, Sgt DeVries answered the phone.  I introduced myself and told him I was making a Canada Day display and was in the process of cutting out a 6’5” tall Mountie as part of the display…was there any restriction or copyright.  He said, he didn’t think so, but then he said… “wouldn’t you sooner have a real Mountie” but he added “I’m only 6’4” tall !!”    I said, I would bend the rules for him …and that was it – Sgt DeVries arrived at 9am,July1st, Canada Day.  He stole the show, everyone wanted to get a picture with him.   My son Steven was helping set up and Sgt. DeVries suggested he and Steven flex their muscles for the camera…he was good with kids of all ages; I was so lucky to have had him be part of my Canada Day Birthday celebrations.

I installed the display at 7am in the park and left it up all day. I think we had about 250 people that drifted in all day long.  The RCMP office donated stickers and pins to give away and Jonathon Wilkinson M.P. for NV (House of Commons) donated 300 paper flags and pins.  So, I was kept busy all day passing out flags, pins and taking pictures of people with their phones.  I was tired at the end of the day being on my feet all day, but when I finally closed it down at 6pm … that first cold beer went down pretty quick, and tasted like more!

My next project is BC Day…Aug 2nd


Dave Rawson