The commitment to serve and protect, and their supreme sacrifice for the safety and security of the Town of Cobourg, will never be forgotten. The Cobourg Police Service honoured the heroic efforts made by two officers who died while serving with the Cobourg Police Service. On June 28, at 10 a.m. the Cobourg Police Service unveiled a Wall of Honour and dedicated two rooms to each officer in their memory.
Constable William Rourke who died in 1915 while in the midst of bringing someone into custody, served 22 years with the Cobourg Police Service. And Cobourg will never forget the heroic act of Constable Chris Garrett who tragically died in 2004, while saving the lives of many others.
Cobourg Chief of Police Kai Liu says, “The Wall of Honour has been in development for over a year now, and we’re really pleased to be able to have these officers and their efforts presented so the public to come in and pay their respects. It’s an honour to be able to lead this dedication and ceremony and unveil it to the constable’s family members and our community.”
What came as a surprise to everyone was the discovery of a living family member of Constable William Rourke, who died in 1915. Thanks to the efforts of retired Deputy Chief David Cromlish, cop-op students with the Cobourg Police Service and of course today’s technology, they were able to track down Lori Pelitera and her sister Lisa Simmons, both Constable Rourke’s great great granddaughters.
Family members of both Constable Rourke and Constable Garrett attended of the ceremony, along with retired Deputy Chief, David Cromlish, York Bell-Smith as the master of ceremonies, Board Chair, Dean Pepper, MPP David Piccini, the Chief of Police, Deputy Chief, and the Cobourg Police Service Chaplain.
The Wall of Honour, displayed inside near the front entrance, is a part of phase two of the station’s renovations. In phase one, completed in early 2018, the front entrance was renovated to include a bigger lobby, public washrooms with showers, couches, and a warming and cooling station. These renovations are helping the Cobourg Police Service provide quality community service to the public.