Lorne Chapitis was born in Toronto on March 5, 1930 and worked first as a factory clerk and later for Canadian Tire. He became an army cadet and moved up to the armoured regiment militia. He joined the Ontario Provincial Police on November 13, 1951 and learned policing at Mount Forest, Owen Sound, Guelph, Walkerton and finally the Peterborough detachment.

Lorne’s wife said Lorne could be characterized as outgoing and inquisitive. Both qualities plus an aptitude for criminal work earned him a corporal’s stripes on May 1, 1962, and he was promoted to detective sergeant on June 1, 1964. This officer had commendations for investigations in armed robbery, non-capital murder and assault. When he attended his last call, Chapitis had just learned he had passed the examination for detective inspector.

On December 11, 1968 Lorne Chapitis and Jim Smith received a call requiring them both to go assist Minden Ontario Provincial Police at South Lake in response to a call that a man had threatened to kill his mother and was barricaded in the family home. Lorne was a trained hostage negotiator and Jim was adept at using tear gas. D/Sergeant Chapitis and Corporal Smith joined five Minden officers and they all surrounded the house. Two officers covered each door and one was a rover in between and the two Peterborough men waited to see how they could help. One officer lunged at the man when he left the house but had to swing around a toboggan leaning against the way. This allowed their quarry to get clear and he discharged a rifle into the floor.

Chapitis and Smith came closer and started to talk to the man. The man shouted for them to come closer where he could see them. When they did so, unarmed and hands held out to show they posed no threat to the man inside the house, the man fired three times, killing Chapitis instantly and wounding Smith so that he died within minutes.

One of the other officers present reacted by firing three shots to prevent the man from reaching his rifle. Another constable could see the shooter through a window, and when a cry rang out that the two officers were down, he disregarded his own safety and dived through the window, overpowered the suspect until others were able to secure the prisoner.

Lorne was survived by his wife, two daughters and a son.