"Big John" Gregovski, a Hungarian speaking son of immigrants to south-western Ontario, was born on September 7, 1942. He was an avid fan of John Wayne. He joined the OPP on October 7, 1963 where he worked at the St. Catharines Detachment until that office closed in 1985. At that time he moved to the Niagara Falls Detachment.
John was a highly popular officer with both the public and his fellow workers. In addition to the Big John moniker, they variously called him Grotty, Grog or Fish after one of his favourite outdoor activities. Another activity he enjoyed was bow hunting where he met police officers from the American side of the Niagara River.
During his quarter century police career he received numerous cards of appreciation from people that he helped on the highway. "Highway" is the operative word because he was a traffic officer and policed the busy highways in the St. Catharines and Niagara areas. Later in his career he became very interested in truck and their maintenance and safe operation. Frequently he worked in conjunction with Ministry of Transport officers in enforcement work.
Constable Gregovski was on the night shift on January 4, 1989 when he went to assist a disabled van on the Queen Elizabeth Way at the base of the Garden City Skyway Bridge. A wrecker had been called and the two men were seated in the cruiser, which had all its roof lights activated. At about two-thirty a.m. a westbound tractor trailer came up in the right-hand land of the three-lane roadway, struck the cruiser, pushed it into the disabled van and sent both vehicles over two hundred feet up the Skyway Bridge. Both the officer and the thirty-six year old passenger sitting in the police car died instantly. The truck driver was later charged with criminal negligence causing death.
John was survived by his wife and two children.