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Our Members. Our Focus. Our Strength.

Since 2002, Ontario has permitted bridges and other highway structures to be dedicated in memory of fallen police officers. Seventy-six provincial highway structures have been dedicated to fallen police officers to date. This Spring two bridges have been dedicated. Our OPPA Board of Directors were honoured to be in attendance at both.

Widow of OPP Provincial Constable Vaughn B. McKay with OPPA Director Dave Dube
May 1, 2024 at Elk Lake Bridge Dedication (photo Jayne van der Veen)

On May 1, 2024 OPPA Director Dave Dube and OPP Commissioner Thomas Carrique were in attendance at Elk Lake, Ontario where a bridge was dedicated to OPP Provincial Constable Vaughn B. McKay who died in the line of duty from injuries sustained from an on-duty vehicle collision that occurred in July 1973. Constable McKay died on December 20th, 1973 as a result of complications from his injuries sustained in the crash. At the time of his death Constable McKay was married with one son. A second son was born in 1974 after his death. His widow, Darlene McKay attended the ceremony and fondly recalled growing up with her high school sweetheart, describing him as “a great guy, super sports person of very good character, very funny, a fellow who would tease all the time.”

Ontario Provincial Police Commissioner Thomas Carrique stated, “Provincial Constable McKay will continue to be remembered for the profound sacrifice that he made.”

Dave Dube stated that McKay was “a Hero In Life, Not Death.”

A CTV Northern story was published online complete with video reporting on the event.

Family of OPP Provincial Constable Norman F. Maker at May 3, 2024 Peterborough Bridge Dedication (photos Jayne van der Veen)

On May 3, 2024 a bridge in Peterborough, Ontario was officially dedicated in memory of OPP Provincial Constable Norman F. Maker who was tragically killed from a gunshot wound on May 3, 1928. At the time of his death, he was survived by his wife, Muriel, and their two daughters: three-year-old Norma and three-month-old Connie. Many family members attended the event to honour Constable Maker.

OPPA Vice President David Sabatini was honoured to be in attendance in Peterbourough at the event along with OPPA 8 Branch President Rob Mahaffy. In a statement about the two bridge dedication events this spring Sabatini stated,

“The OPPA now has 113 police officers on the Honour Roll who have died in the line of duty. We never forget their service and sacrifice. Constables McKay and Maker died while honourably serving the citizens of the Province of Ontario. We will always be remembered them as Heroes In Life, Not Death.”

OPPA Vice President David Sabatini and OPPA 8 Branch President Rob Mahaffy at OPP Provincial Constable Norman F. Maker Bridge Dedication
OPPA Vice President David Sabatini and OPPA 8 Branch President Rob Mahaffy at
OPP Provincial Constable Norman F. Maker Bridge Dedication (photo Jayne van der Veen)

Ontario Provincial Police Commissioner Thomas Carrique stated, “The dedication and commitment of Ontario’s police officers to their communities is exemplary. This bridge stands as a testament to honour Provincial Constable Maker’s memory. We vow to never forget his sacrifice, and this tribute will serve as a perpetual reminder of his legacy.”

Ontario Solicitor General Michael Kerzner stated, “Today we commemorate the ultimate sacrifice made by Constable Norman F. Maker. Each day, police officers across Ontario put themselves in harm’s way to serve and safeguard their communities. We recognize and honour this steadfast commitment to duty and service.”

Prabmeet Sarkaria, Minister of Transportation stated, “It is only fitting this bridge will now be a tribute to a hero who served his community. We will always remember Constable Maker for his selflessness and the example he set.”

Mindset Matters – Where Shared Experiences Connect People

Encompas Mental Health Wellness Program

Wednesday, March 6th – 10:00am ET – 11:00am ET

Featuring Retired OPP Officer and President of the OPPVA, Robert Pilon – Rob Pilon’s 30+ Year Journey of Service, Support and Leadership

Hosted by Carl Dalton, CEO, Dalton Associates

Join us on Wednesday, March 6th, from 10:00am EST – 11:00am EST where Carl Dalton (CEO of Dalton Associates), will have a conversation with retired OPP Officer and President of the OPPVA, Robert Pilon. Robert will share the journey of his 30+ year career through his perspectives as:

  • A father of four, who faithfully served with the support and encouragement of his wife in numerous communities throughout Northern Ontario
  • A father of a police family – two of his four children followed him into policing and leadership – his daughter who recently retired as a Sergeant in the OPP North Bay Provincial Communications Centre and his son Mike is Chief Superintendent at Northeast Regional Headquarters; his other two children are educators.
  • An officer who experienced his own struggles which motivated him to become a leader and to provide the support he believes everyone is due in this profession – Rob’s final position was Superintendent at OPP Northeast Region HQ
  • A Retiree since 2003 and a grandfather

Rob is here to share his wisdom and passion regarding the importance of seeking help when needed. He wants everyone to know there is no shame in doing so even though this was not always the case. He believes no one should suffer alone particularly with so many resources now available. He is passionate about the power of connecting with others during difficult times and he is also here to encourage participation in the OPPVA as one of those vital supports. Rob has been a member of the OPP Veterans Association since 1999, a member of the Board since 2016 and since 2022 has served as President.

Visit www.encompascare.ca to learn more.

Note: To ensure your anonymity, your registration information will ONLY be available to the hosts from Dalton Associates. Registrants will NOT have the option of turning on their camera or microphone at any time. Questions will be managed through the text Q&A which are sent only to the hosts – Dalton Associates. They will either answer those questions verbally without referencing the name of the participant who asked the question, or privately through the text function. 

All sessions will be delivered through the PHIPA compliant version of Zoom Webinar.

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact encompas@daltonassociates.ca

Encompas Mental Health Wellness Program

Wednesday, December 6th – 10:00am ET – 11:00am ET

About the Speaker:

Elizabeth is a First Responder spouse of both a Canadian Armed Forces reservist and Police Sergeant. Her husband of 20 years, Andrew Gough CD is a Military Police/Close Protection Operator and medically retired Police Sergeant with London Police Service. Together they founded V-EH! Veterans and Everyday Heroes in 2019 – a federal not-for-profit organization. They have spoken on a number of platforms, sharing their journey through an OSI to offer their reflections on Post Traumatic Growth. In Elizabeth’s professional life, she is an Early Years Advisor with the Ministry of Education/Ontario Public Service and is also a dedicated community volunteer and leader on several initiatives to champion sport, children, and women’s causes.  Elizabeth and Andrew have two teenage children and reside in St. Thomas Ontario.

About the Session:

Join us on Wednesday, December 6th, from 10:00am ET – 11:00am ET to have a conversation with Elizabeth Gough, a first responder spouse, as she provides an intimate and honest account of her experience living with and loving a first responder with an Operational Stress Injury. She will share reflections on her family’s trauma journey – where their story with an OSI began and their collective experience with it. Elizabeth will take us on a journey through the difficult identification of the injury, her loving assertation that her spouse seek help, life and culture as a military and police family, parenting in a home of trauma, pathways of healing, and unexpected possibilities. Elizabeth may be joined by her eighteen-year-old daughter Ava who will share her reflection on growing up with a Dad with an OSI. This session will delve into the impacts of PTSD, not just on the serving member but also on the spouse and family. 

Visit www.encompascare.ca to learn more.

Note: To ensure your anonymity, your registration information will ONLY be available to the hosts from Dalton Associates. Registrants will NOT have the option of turning on their camera or microphone at any time. Questions will be managed through the text Q&A which are sent only to the hosts – Dalton Associates. They will either answer those questions verbally without referencing the name of the participant who asked the question, or privately through the text function. 

All sessions will be delivered through the PHIPA compliant version of Zoom Webinar.

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact encompas@daltonassociates.ca