PC Behan was born in Ottawa on July 23, 1934. He graduated from Fisher Park High School in 1953 and joined the Royal Canadian Air Force the age of nineteen, but left military service three months later.

He joined the RCMP and served until January 1956. He was appointed to the OPP on January 14, 1956, six months shy of his twenty-second birthday.

Constable Behan first served at Brockville and then was transferred farther north in the same district to Perth. On Friday, April 13, 1956, he met PC Crane who was on his first shift since arriving in Perth.

Things were quiet that night and both men were looking forward to the end of their shift as they were driving southwest along Highway 7. The road was dry and in good condition. The police vehicle was traveling between thirty-five and forty miles an hour as they rounded a bend in the road not far to the west of the village of Maberly and some way before Silver Lake.

When passenger Crane saw that his partner failed to negotiate the curve, the patrol car was already veering into the left lane. Crane only had time to shout “Pete!” but Behan swung the wheel to the left before any further defensive action could be taken. The car jarred in a gravel skid across the soft shoulder, crossed over a rock outcrop and careened into a ditch, struck several tree stumps and rolled several times before coming to rest upside down. Both men were thrown and wound up beneath the cruiser.

Pete Behan died instantly and Harold Crane received severe injuries, but survived the accident.

PC Pete Behan was survived by his parents, an older brother and a sister.