British Columbia

Mounties track down man who waited in line just for 'honour' of standing beside officers

RCMP plan to give him a copy of their photo.

Surrey RCMP want to give the man, who waited 20 minutes in Vaisakhi photo booth line, a copy of their picture

Surrey RCMP say they've identified the man standing between the two officers in this photo, and plan to meet up with him to give him a copy. (Amandeep Takhar)

Mounties say they've tracked down a man who waited nearly half an hour in line for a quick turn at the RCMP's photo booth, just for the "honour" of standing next to two RCMP officers.

Officers set up their station at the Vaisakhi parade in Surrey, B.C., on April 20, on standby to chat and take photos with anyone who came by. About half a million people marched through the city for the festivities and a line of people waiting to take a photo with two RCMP officers in their red serges grew long.

When the man's turn came, he said he didn't have a camera. Amandeep Takhar, who was volunteering at the booth, said the man told him "he just wanted the honour of standing alongside two Surrey RCMP members."

Takhar, 28, took a photo on his personal phone anyway, showing the man dressed in a neat blue windbreaker between the officers with his hands resting on his cane.

"When he came down, I asked him in Punjabi if there's anywhere I could send it to, if he had a phone number or an email and he said that he didn't. He just mentioned, 'I just wanted to be up there and take a picture with them. They do a lot to keep us safe,'" said Takhar, who's been volunteering with the RCMP's communities program for two years.

"He reminded me of my own grandfather. Such a sweet, calm guy. Soft-spoken gentleman."

Takhar posted the photo on Twitter, hoping to track down the man's family.

On Tuesday afternoon, Surrey RCMP said they'd identified the man, and he'll visit the detachment soon to receive a copy of his photo.

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