John Stolarski’s Old Newspaper Clippings

Photograph of RCMP documents and papers with pair of glasses (Source of photo - Sheldon Boles).




With the exception of his first two years in the Force, John Stolarski spent his entire career as a Police Dog Services handler.





Throughout this career, John clipped newspaper articles about members who he had worked with.

Despite the fact that John has passed away, his family has agreed for us to re-post these articles for the interest of RCMP Veterans and current members of the Force.

PERSONALITY PROFILE – Police Ident Section Is Demanding Work

Photograph of RCMP Corporal Stan Douglas.

Photograph of RCMP Corporal Stan Douglas. 

July 3, 1976 – Nanaimo Daily Free Press – One of the most demanding jobs in modern police technology has been the duties of Cpl. Stan Douglas, who has been with Nanaimo RCMP detachment for the past couple of years and is now about to be transferred to Port Hardy as second in command.

In his 13 years on the police force, one of the most satisfying cases he worked on was when he was stationed in Manitoba.

A young man was hit by a car and when the driver saw how badly the fellow was hurt, he just drove off.  The injured man was found in time and survived the accident, and for a while we had no way of tracing the hit-and-run vehicle,” recalls Cpl. Douglas.

An alert constable about 150 miles away had been investigating another accident when he spotted a cure with a broken headlight.  He went to it and looked closely enough to spot what he thought could be dried blood.

The constable sent a notice to all detachments, telling of his find, and Cpl. Douglas was sent to examine the headline.

Shards of glass from the hit-and-run scene matched the headlight, resulting in conviction of the driver.

It was satisfying because this was a classic situation of piecing together minute shreds of evidence and zeroing in on the guilty,” he said.

He said it was also satisfying because it was an excellent example of police teamwork, from men in the field to the officer sent out to make the actual arrest.

The most exciting case was the local escape of three convicted prisoners who beat up and stabbed their guards at Nanaimo Airport.

We were in on the chase (Cpl. Peter Payne and Cpl. Douglas) but at one time we were stuck in the mud along a back road.

When we got out, it was just in time to hear the fugitives’ car had been spotted in town.  We went to where the action seemed to be happening, but by then they’d left.”

Cpl. Payne was driving and managed to keep up with the chase, being just behind the leaders when the fugitives’ car was forced off Hammond Bay Road into a driveway.

Cpl. Douglas, who had fired some shots at the fugitives, was at the ready with a shotgun when Cpl. Payne came through the blockade of police cars, warning his fellow officers he was going to ram the escapees’ car which he did.

Cpl. Douglas had his shotgun aimed at the rear window of the car in which the three armed criminals cringed.

That’s the difference between them and us,” he said, when asked why he had not fired, but allowed the three an opportunity to surrender, which they did.


He said he still has a feeling of satisfaction when fingerprints from one investigation can lead to the solving of as many as 15 to 30 breaking and entry cases.

Referring to new techniques being used in police investigations, whereby computers are used to search out information contained in files across Canada, he said it will herald a new day in police work.

I think it will eventually eliminate the need for people to do the hours of searching that the computer can do in seconds.”

He said there was even a possibility a computer could be placed on a searching standy for a day or so, to pick up new information from other parts of the country, when a fugitive is being sought.

Cpl. Douglas said he selected the force after thorough consideration but he began with a slight bias toward the RCMP because at the time his older brother was in the force.

He joined at the Kamloops detachment Jan. 23, 1963, close to his home town of Vernon.

After nine months of training in Regina, he was transferred to Edmonton.

I was there for 20 minutes and I was transferred to Red Deer and sent the next 70 days there until I was transferred to Innisfail, where I spent the next 18 months.”

His next transfer was to Bashaw in central Alberta, where he stayed for three years.

He was on a tour of duty in Ottawa for 18 months when he joined the identification section of the force and received his training through both courses and on-the-job instruction.

After four years in Yorktown, Sask., where “I could never get used to the winters,” Cpl. Douglas was transferred to Nanaimo.  Now is ready to assume a new posting in Port Hardy.



Two-member patrol units of RCMP were common sights throughout Nanaimo at the weekend as the police maintained a close check on bathtub celebrants.  More than 150 people were arrested and jailed overnight Friday and Saturday, mostly on liquor charges as the RCMP worked to prevent any re-occurence of the near-riot which marred last year’s celebrations.  The highly visible tactics included 24-hour patrols through the downtown area and made for one of the quietest Bathtub Days weekends ever.  The two officers pictured are Corporal R.A. Cooper of Campbell River and Constable Mike Monita of Nanaimo.


Photograph of RCMP Corporal Murray Wood

Constable Murray Wood of the RCMP Sydney investigation staff, has been promoted to the rank of corporal.  Cpl. Wood, a native of Ontario, has seen service with the force in Cape Breton ever since enlistment in 1961.


Photograph of

Photograph of RCMP Constable Gary Wilyman who is learning about a variety of rescue tools from PEP member Jim Craig.

Members of the Nanaimo RCMP were shown a Search and Rescue truck and were shown by official what could be available to police in the event of an emergency.  The truck featured among other items two complete kitchen facilities, search lights and gas mask equipment.  Nanaimo RCMP Insp. Dan Webster commented “you name it” the truck had it.  he said police are pleased such “sophisticated equipment” is available on “short notice” to assist in emergencies and said it was a “real asset” to an emergency force operating 24 hours a day.  He said the force must rely on emergency organizations such as the search and rescue.


Photograph of

Photograph of Brenda and Lesslie Whittam with puppy Tye and RCMP Corporal John Stolarski and his Police Service Dog Aro.

Tye, a five-month old German shepherd being cuddled by Brenda and Lesslie Anne Whittam, has to live up to a famous name.  He is named after a police dog credited with capturing three bank robbers about 30 years ago.  Tye is now receiving basic obedience training from the two young ladies.

However, when the pup is older he will graduate to stricter RCMP training if accepted as a police dog.

Aro, in the back ground with its dog master Corporal John Stolarski, was trained in the normal manner by adult handers.  It is now common in Alberta for young people in 4-H to undertake the training of puppies until the time arrives for more serious instruction by experts.

If the Whittam girls’ pilot project is successful, other young people may become involved in dog training.  This would release officer for other duties.