Hundreds gather to say goodbye to fallen peace officer
About 700 police and peace officers, firefighters and paramedics from across Canada gathered to remember Rod Lazenby Friday at a memorial in High River, Alta.
Lazenby, a 62-year-old peace officer, was dropped off at a southeast Calgary police station in his own SUV on Aug. 10, the RCMP said. He was taken to hospital in critical condition but pronounced dead on arrival.
He was responding to an animal complaint near Priddis, Alta — a 15-minute drive southwest of Calgary. The memorial in High River is also in the same area.
Lazenby spent 35 years with the RCMP before retiring in 2006 to become a peace officer for the Municipal District of Foothills.
Peace officers have authority to enforce certain laws and regulations.
Darlene Roblin, who knew Lazenby well, said the former Mountie will be remembered for being kind-hearted and professional.
"He’s kind of quiet, had a quiet way about him, but always very professional, very good at what he did and family was hugely important," Roblin said.
News stories from 2002 said Lazenby was part of an elaborate sting operation in Ottawa where officers posed as Italian mobsters to try to get a suspect to confess to murder.
Staff Sgt. Gord Erickson, with the Calgary Police Service, said he’s not surprised so many officers came out Friday to pay tribute to Lazenby.
"The nature of our business is such that we understand it’s dangerous," Erickson said. "It has its inherent risk. This is not the last time we will have a line of duty death in the law enforcement community but when this does happen, we need to be there for each other and for the families."
Trevor Kloschinsky is charged with first-degree murder in Lazenby’s death.