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Local first responders pay tribute to those lost in NS shootings

Members of the RCMP, Kingston Police, Kingston Fire and Rescue, and Frontenac Paramedics stand at attention in silence at the corner of Princess Street and Gardiners Road on Friday, Apr. 24, 2020. Photo by Cris Vilela.

To pay tribute to fallen Nova Scotia RCMP Constable Heidi Stevenson and all those lost in the mass shooting on April 18 and 19, 2020, local first responders held a moment of silence outside the Kingston RCMP detachment.

“Our thoughts are with Nova Scotians as they mourn the devastating tragedy of last weekend. On behalf of Kingston Fire & Rescue, I extend our deepest sympathies to the friends and families who lost loved ones, and to members of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police who lost an esteemed colleague, Constable Heidi Stevenson,” said Kingston Fire & Rescue Chief Shawn Armstrong. “Our hearts are heavy for all who are suffering.”

Kingston Police, Kingston Fire and Rescue, the Kingston RCMP detachment, and Frontenac Paramedic Services all attended the tribute, which took place at 1 p.m. on Friday, Apr. 24, 2020. This tribute mirrored those taking place across the country at the same time. Kington Police closed the busy intersection of Gardiners Road and Princess Street, adjacent to the local RCMP office, and traffic stopped for the moment of silence as Lieutenant Colonel Gordon Hagar of the Canadian Armed Forces played bagpipes.

Members of the RCMP stand in silence in tribute to their fallen colleague, Const. Heidi Stevenson, as Lieutenant Colonel Gordon Hagar of the Canadian Armed Forces plays a solemn requiem.

“These are the moments in the career of an officer and first responder you never want to happen, but know and dread it is inevitable. What is felt by one service is felt by all. We are truly brothers and sisters and policing is a profession where strong bonds are made across organizations. I feel honoured to be able to pay my respects to the courageous and loving life of Constable Heidi Stevenson,” said Sgt. Steve Koopman of Kingston Police.

First responders lined the side of Princess Street for the moment of silence on Friday, Apr. 24, 2020 at 1 p.m.

“We can all empathize with the loss of her family, friends and work colleagues, which weighs heavily on our hearts. In fact, two of the RCMP officers in attendance at their Kingston memorial today knew and worked with Heidi in the past,” Koopman continued. “Such coincidental meetings hits home how small these connections can be in even such a vast country like Canada. She will be missed by so many, she gave her life in defence of those who depend on us for safety, and there will be a hole that will not be easily filled. She was a hero in life and will not be forgotten.”

Members of the RCMP detachment in Kingston salute the flag during a ceremony in tribute to those lost during the Nova Scotia shootings on Apr. 18 and 19, 2020.

Earlier in the day, Kingston Police held their own tribute at Police Headquarters, where Chief Antje McNeely, Deputy Chief Chris Scott, Inspector Carolyn Rice, Kingston Police Association President/Sergeant Cam Gough, and Vice-President/Detective Constable Jason Alblas all stood silent, in front of the flags at half-mast. There, three members of the Kingston Police Pipe Band played Amazing Grace. Kingston Police then put together the following video in tribute to Const. Stevenson.

Tribute to Fallen RCMP Officer Heidi Stevenson

Tribute paid to fallen Royal Canadian Mounted Police in Nova Scotia Constable Heidi Stevenson at our headquarters this morning. In attendance were Chief Antje McNeely, Deputy Chief Chris Scott, Inspector Carolyn Rice, Kingston Police Association President/Sergeant Cam Gough, and Vice-President/Detective Constable Jason Alblas. Many thanks as well to the Kingston Police Pipe Band for their lament. Our hearts are heavy but our support for fellow officers across this nation is unwavering.#HeroesInLife #NovaScotiaStrong

Posted by Kingston Police on Friday, April 24, 2020

From all of us at Kingstonist, our heartfelt sympathies and condolences go out to all those affected by the senseless acts of violence in Nova Scotia last week, and we remind everyone to stay home, stay safe, and stay connected.

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