As the Moncton tragedy unfolds, police in Nova Scotia are reminded of other fallen officers who were shot and killed in the line of duty.

Retired officer Jim Hoskins remembers Dartmouth Cpl. Eric Spicer, a 28-year-old husband and father who was shot near the Angus J. MacDonald Bridge in 1975.

“He dragged him by his tie. He had Eric dragged, choked him, and just, boom, pulled his gun and shot him,” said Hoskins.

Derek Burkholder

RCMP Sgt. Derek Burkholder, another husband and father, was killed while responding to a domestic dispute in Lunenburg County in 1996. (Submitted)

Twenty-one years after Spicer was killed, RCMP Sgt. Derek Burkholder, another husband and father, was killed while responding to a domestic dispute in Lunenburg County.

The tragic circumstances in Moncton weighed heavily on Halifax Staff Sgt. Bill Morris at a press conference Thursday morning.

“A sombre mood here this morning. Our officers are reporting for duty asking what can they do, how they can help. I've had several calls from off-duty officers asking can they come in," said Morris.

Hoskins says he was attacked many times in his 36-year career as a police officer. 

Jim Hoskins

Retired officer Jim Hoskins has been attacked many times in his 36-year career. (CBC)

He was even shot at once while sitting in a police vehicle writing up a report at the scene of a suspected arson in Spryfield.

“That's what it is when you're a cop, but you don’t think about it all the time because if you do, you'll never go to work,” he said.

Hoskins says he suspects officers across Canada are pausing to think about Moncton.

“They're looking for that fellow now and I wish them happy hunting. I hope they get him and they will get him.”