Larry Burden’s This Day In The Force

RNMWP crest, Royal North West Mounted Police (Soruce of photo - Sheldon Boles)




The achievements and contributions of the Force have been built upon the individual contributions of many past Veterans. These contributions have largely been forgotten.





Veteran Sgt. Larry Burden ( #35982) served in “E” Division for 20 years has spent over ten years researching and summarizing these achievements by specific date. Nearly every day, Larry sends out an email message with a selection from his work in progress manuscript “This Day In The RCMP” to individuals interested in these historical notes.

In an effort to share his research to a large group, Larry has agreed to permit us to develop a webpage on our website. Each webpage will post Larry’s historical notations over the past week.

If you wish to contact Larry Burden or provide additional information about his research, please email him at

November 13th

1943 – The movie “Northern Pursuit” starring Errol Flynn who plays a Mountie and poses as a traitor in an attempt to infiltrate a Nazi spy ring is released by MGM.

1968 – The FLQ plant a bomb that explodes at the Domtar factory.

1971 – The Meritorious Certificate from the Most Venerable Order of the Hospital of St John of Jerusalem was awarded to Constables #24763 Arthur Carter and #24809 Kenneth O’Brien for saving a life near Regina Saskatchewan.

1972 – After he saved three children and their mother from a house fire at Strathmore, Alberta, Cochrane Highway Patrol member #28785 Constable John P. Mills is awarded Testimonial Parchment from the Royal Life Saving of Canada.

1987 – Constable J.A.M. Marien of Chilliwack, British Columbia received a Commanding Officers Commendation for his work and perseverance in investigating and convicting the members of a stolen car ring who were responsible for the theft of numerous vehicles throughout 1985.

2000 – The Medal of Bravery and The Commissioner’s Commendation was earned by #44373 Guy Joseph Roger Francis Forcier who, while off duty along with two civilians tackled and arrested jewelry store robber in Langley, BC.

Armed with a 9mm Colt pistol, a would-be robber entered the Golden Tree Jewelers at the Willowbrook Mall, in Langley, British Columbia. The thief ordered the employees to fill a duffle bag with $400,000 in high-end jewelry, while he repeatedly threatened them with the pistol. The brazen robbery was witnessed by several people in the shopping mall, including, mall security officer Mr. Garry Rozak and customer Mr. Clinton Michael Douglas Kakoschke and Constable Forcier who was off duty and unarmed.

As the robber attempted to run outside to join his accomplice who was waiting in the getaway vehicle, the trio chased and tackled him at the mall’s exit. In the ensuing struggle Mr. Kakoschke was pistol-whipped in the head and the robber repeatedly aimed his pistol at the other two officers. Undeterred they succeeded in wrestling him to the ground and holding him until the local police arrived. Mr. Kakoschke was treated in hospital for his injuries, and upon closer examination of the handgun police discovered that the ammunition clip had become dislodged during the attempted escape from the jewelry store.

On June 25th, 2004 the Governor General of Canada, presented the trio with the Medal of Bravery.

Photograph of the Canadian Medal of Bravery

Photograph of the Canadian Medal of Bravery.

2004 – Honour Roll Number 205.

Photograph of RCMP Auxiliary Constable Glen Every.

#A/9447 Auxiliary Constable Glen Evely age 39, was killed when a when the police car in which he was riding was struck by a stolen truck that ran a red light in Vernon BC.

#38034 Constable Francois Grenier and Auxiliary Constable Evely were on routine patrol in Vernon BC. Earlier in the evening a stolen pickup truck from Armstrong BC had been involved in a high-speed pursuit, and the chase had been shut down because of the dangerous manner in which the pursued vehicle was driving.

At 3:00 AM the two constables were driving through the intersection of 29th Street and 30th Avenue, when the same stolen vehicle sped through the red light and broadsided the police car. Auxiliary Constable Evely was killed on impact and Constable Grenier was seriously injured.

The two occupants of the stolen truck were injured also and taken to the local hospital. The 23-year-old driver, Michael Douglas O’Brien was later charged with several criminal offenses including criminal negligence causing death. On December 8th, 2004 O’Brien was inadvertently released from jail due to the misreading of court documents. By the time error was discovered, the accused had fled. A Canada wide warrant was issued for his arrest and he was apprehended a few days later in Calgary Alberta. On March 5th, 2005 Constable Grenier awoke from the coma he had been in since the collision.

Glen Evely was married and had two children; he was employed by the B.C. Forest Service and had been an Auxiliary Constable for two years.

November 14th

1898 – While transporting the first mail from Dawson City, Yukon Territory, Constables #2000 John Richardson and #3078 William Bell were caught on Hootalinqua River when the ice broke up and swept them away. As they were being swept downstream near 8-Mile cabin, 190 miles from Dawson City they saved themselves from certain death by grabbing hold of some tree branches and climbing up the riverbank. Their lives were spared, but all of the mail was lost.

1901 – #3710 Constable Daniel Holland had his finger shot off by Indian, when he opened the cabin door to make arrest at Carcross, Yukon.

1953 – US President Dwight D. Eisenhower addresses the Senate and House of Commons.

1960 – A panel of experts, appointed by Ontario’s Attorney General Kelso Roberts, finds that D.H. Lawrence’s novel Lady Chatterley’s Lover is not obscene according to the Criminal Code.

November 15

1909 – #3827 Frederick Jarvis is promoted to the rank of Corporal in recognition of his outstanding work on the Meese murder case in Quill Lake, Saskatchewan.

1973 – The RCMP Patrol Vessel “Centennial” MP100 is launched at a ceremony where Mrs. Higgitt performs the Christening ceremony. The 75’ patrol boat serves on the East Coast of Canada until she is de-commissioned on April 5, 1988.

1978 – Canada Post releases a new14¢ postage stamp featuring the RCMP auxiliary schooner St. Roch.

1979 – Auxiliary Constable Wayne Bill of Kelowna BC earns his second Commanding Officers Commendation for Bravery. The commendation resulted from a man coming into the front counter of the detachment armed with a rifle and threatening to kill him. Auxiliary Constable Bill leapt over the counter and grabbed the rifle from the man and subdued him until other members could rush to his aid.

1989 – Liberal Senator Hazen Argue, is charged by the RCMP with misuse of Senate funds. He is the first Canadian Senator to face criminal charges but he died in 1991 before his case went to trial.


Photograph of RCMP Corporal Robert Gordon Teather (Reg.#26112).

2004 – The RCMP’ only recipient of the Cross of Valour passed away this day. 57-year old #26112 Corporal Robert (Bob) Gordon Teather died from complications related to diabetes. He was the only member of the RCMP to be awarded the Cross of Valour. The Cross of Valour is awarded for acts of the most conspicuous courage in circumstances of extreme peril. Only 19 people have received this decoration since it was created in 1972. Corporal Teather was Canada’s 13th recipient. See September26, 1981.

November 16

Photograph of Louis Riel

Photograph of Louis Riel

1885 – After being convicted in court for treason the rebel leader Louis Riel 1844-1885 was hanged in Mounted Police barracks in Regina. Before he went to the gallows, journalist Nicholas Flood Davin who was disguised as a priest gained access to him and obtained an exclusive interview. On the morning of his execution, the hangman appeared in the doorway of his cell and Louis Riel stated, ‘Mr. Gibson, you want me? I am ready’. He then was escorted from his cell and after receiving absolution from a real priest, he ascended the scaffold and while the priest recited the Lord’s Prayer, the trap door opened. Louis Riel’s body was then delivered to St-Boniface and he was interred in the cemetery in front of the Roman Catholic Cathedral.

1989 – On this day the Supreme Court of Canada ruled that a fetus has no right to life under common law, the Quebec Civil Code or the Quebec Charter.

1993 – Constables #40479 David Radu and #41806 Christopher Newel earned commendations after they prevented a suicidal woman in Cranbrook, B.C. from killing herself after she saturated herself with gasoline.

November 17

1879 – Honour Roll Number 3.

The first Mountie killed in the line of duty.

Photograph of the grave marker for

Photograph of the grave marker for Constable Marmaduke Graburn (Reg. #335) (Source of photo – RCMP Gravesite database).

#335 Constable Marmaduke Graburn, age 19, who was murdered by a person or persons unknown.

Constable Graburn was on duty guarding horses at the NWMP “Sick Horse camp” in the valley of Battle Creek near Fort Walsh, in the Cypress Hills on the Saskatchewan-Alberta border. Earlier on the day he was murdered, Constable Graburn had a confrontation with a Blood Indian named Star Child who had been hanging around the camp begging for food. Graburn had ordered him to leave the camp after calling him a “miserable dog”. When Graburn’s rider less horse returned to Fort Walsh without him a search party was organized and sent to find him. #458 (Original Series) Sgt. Robert McCutcheon located his body at the bottom of a coulee and found that the constable had been shot in the back of the head at close range. Suspicion immediately fell on a “Star Child” who had fled to the Bear Paws mountains in Montana. Several attempts to have American authorities arrest and send him back to Canada failed but on May 18th 1881, Star Child was spotted at the Blood Camp twenty-five mile from Fort Macleod. Four members accompanied by Métis Scout Gerry Potts were sent to the camp and after a violent struggle they handcuffed and arrested him and with several Blood warriors in pursuit, rushed him back to Fort Macleod. On October 18, 1881 Star Child was tried for the murder of Constable Graburn, even though he admitted to the murder and the police provided corroborating evidence, the jury of six ranchers fearing reprisals acquitted him for lack of evidence.

Marmaduk Graburn was buried in plot eight at Fort Walsh, which is now a National Historic Site. Star Child was arrested later for horse theft, and sentenced to prison.

1918 – A contingent of cavalry composed of six officers and 184 men known as “B” Squadron of the RNWMP under command of #O.123 Superintendent George S. Worsley departed for Siberia aboard the RMS “Monteagle”, arriving at Vladivostok Russia on December 17.


B Squadron had been sent to Russia to support allied intervention in the Russian civil war. After spending several months waiting to be utilized they were sent back to Regina on July 7th, 1919. Their only casualty was #7501 Cst William Henderson who died of influenza. See December 29,1918. Only a small party of men who stayed behind to escort a trainload of the contingent’s horses saw action when they were attacked by Red Army partisans. Two of the members were decorated for their actions in the attack.  Check out the six part article on “B” Squadron RNWMP here.

1968 – Commendation for bravery issued to #23779 Cst. Arthur Madrigga who was dispatched to the scene of a polar bear attack at the Vocational School in Churchill, Manitoba. Upon his arrival he discovered that the bear still had the victim “Pauloosie Meeko” in its mouth. In an attempt to get the bear to release the boy, Cst Madrigga fired shot in air, but the bear carried boy 70 feet away and then dropped him. Then the bear reared up and roared as Madrigga took aim and killed the beast. The child was rushed to hospital, but unfortunately died of his wounds.

1995 – Constables #38741 Keith Jones and #43937 Tammy Patterson, received commendations for disarming a dangerous suicidal man on the Kawacatoose Reserve, Sask.

November 18

1949 – The RCMP begins security screening of employees at the National Film Board because the NFB began doing work for the National defense department.

1976 – The Meritorious Life Saving Certificate from the St. John Ambulance was awarded to life saving to Alberton Prince Edward Island detachment member #26090 Constable Robert R. Humes.

1992 – RCMP seize record 4,323 kilos of cocaine with a street value of $2.7 billion. The Canadian military, with the help of the US DEA, track the plane from South America. When it was inside Canadian air space the military then chased it with jet fighters and military helicopters over New Brunswick, and then forced it to land at a remote airstrip in Casey Quebec. Two days later a raid was executed on the associated processing lab in Laval, Quebec where they arrested four Quebeckers and three Columbian nationals.


Photograph of Constable Peter Magdic (Reg.#48139) (Source of photo – RCMP Gravesite database).

2001 – #48139 Constable Peter Magdic, age 28, was killed in a police motor vehicle accident on Highway 240, approximately 12 kilometers south of Portage la Prairie, Manitoba.

He was returning from a routine call on the Long Plain First Nation when his vehicle went off the road on curve and rolled over. A passing motorist used the constable’s portable radio to call for help discovered his vehicle. Constable Peter Magdic had only been in the RCMP since December 2000. He is not listed on the Honour Roll.

November 19

1883 – The first white child is born in the new community of Calgary, Alberta.

1902 – Tragedy struck again for Constable #3710 Daniel Holland while paddling across the Tagish Lake in the Yukon Territory with former constable #3164 Andrew Dickson. (See November 14th 1901) The two men were paddling separate canoes across the lake when the wind speed increased and Andrew Dickson’s canoe was swamped in the rough water while they were several miles from shore. He ended up in the turbulent water and slipped below the surface and drowned. There was nothing Constable Holland could do. Shortly after experiencing this second tragedy on the same lake Holland left the Force shortly thereafter.

Andrew Dickson had served in the Force from 1896 to 1900 and left to work along side his two brothers running their fishing camp on Tagish Lake. Both of his brothers had served in the NWMP as well: #2101 Thomas Alexander Dickson and #2102 Adam Dickson.

Daniel Holland died in 1948. He is buried in Melrose, New Brunswick.

1981 – To protest the exclusion of aboriginal rights from Canada’s new constitution, over 3,000 Native Indians march on Parliament Hill, and in several other sites across Canada.