Larry Burden’s This Day In The RCMP

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), who 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 larryburden8@gmail.com.


April 20th

1905– The Royal Humane Society Silver Medal of Bravery was awarded to #3982 Constable Peter Glashen for saving the life of a fellow member. He and #4049 Constable James Edwards were in the process of rescuing several people who became trapped when the Wascana Creek in Regina Saskatchewan flooded its banks. Constable Edwards had fallen in the swollen creek and would have drowned if not for the efforts of Constable Glashen. 

1935- AmbassadorPictures releases “The Red Blood of Courage”. The 55-minute movie starring Kermit Maynard as a Mountie Jim Sullivan who goes undercover as a fugitive from justice to capture an outlaw and his partnerwho killed his friend. During the search, he rescues a beautiful woman (Ann Sheridan) whose uncle is being held for ransomon his ranch where the villain is masquerading as the owner of the property.

1945– The Kings Police Medal for Gallantry was awarded to #10288 Corporal Joseph William Pooke for his attempts to save a child from fire in Athabasca, Alberta. Pooke entered the burning building and despite the flames, carried the child out to safety. Unfortunately, the child died shortly thereafter from severe burns.

1966– Honour Roll Number132.
#24014 Constable Philip John Francis Tidman age 22 was killed in a police car accident, near Wakaw, Saskatchewan.

Constable Tidman had only worked in the field for four months when he and Special Constable Richard Dubkowski were tasked with transporting a prisoner from Wakaw to Saskatoon. As he drove down Highway #2 he encountered a Ford truck traveling towards them hugging the centerline. Just before the vehicles met the truck swerved into the opposite lane and collided with Tidman’s car. The car spun out of control and came to rest in the ditch, Constable Tidman was killed instantly.

Special Constable Dubkowski and the prisoner were riding in the back seat survived with only minor injuries. The driver of the truck was never charged.

At the family’s request Constable Philip Tidman’s remains were cremated and the ashes were sent home to his parents in Ottawa Ontario.


April 19th

1931– Honour Roll Number 50 and 200.
#10399 Cst. Donald Ross Macdonell age 22 and S/822 Special Cst. Norman Massan drowned near the mouth of Fourteen River, Hudson Bay while on patrol. 

The two men had been on a dog sled patrol that had taken them from their detachment in Port Nelson, Manitoba to Fort Severn, Ontario. On the return trip, the men made camp on a small island near the mouth the Fourteen River. The weather had been warming rapidly and that night a sudden thaw caused the Fourteen River to swell and the low island soon had water rushing over the pack ice. When the two policemen woke to the rising water, they only had time to wade to shore without any of their supplies or dogs. Neither man made it to shore alive. 

When some of their dogs returned to the detachment several days later, a search party headed by Sgt.# 6737 John Joseph Molloy started looking for the men. On April 27th, the body of Special Constable Massan was found beneath the ice halfway between his camp and shore. The next day Cst. McDonnell’s body was found frozen in the fresh ice five yards from shore.Cst. Donald Ross Macdonell had a long pedigree of members of the Mounted Police dating back to the North West Mounted Police. He was buried in the Union Cemetery in Edmonton Alberta.
Special Constable Norman Massan finally had his name added to the Honour Roll in 2002. The whereabouts of his gravesite are unknown.

1975– While posted at Flin Flon, Manitoba #21507 Franklin G. Chappel responded to a complaint involving a youth who had chased his parents from their home with rifle. Chappel went to the house and while the youth pointed the rifle at him, he spoke to the gunman for several minutes and eventually convinced him to put the weapon down and surrender. Constable Chapple was awarded a Commanding Officers Commendation. He served from 1960 to 1992 when he retired a Staff Sergeant.

2020– Constable Stevenson was killed in a shoot. The murderer had gone on the largest murder spree in Canadian History.

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