After Ridge Meadows RCMP officer Const. Rick O’Brien made the ultimate sacrifice for his community on Sept. 22, government officials and organizations from all corners of the province are coming together to mourn his death.
As the @460km runners continue to make their way to Ottawa to honour those who have made the ultimate sacrifice, we mourn the tragic loss of yet another officer - RCMP Ridge Meadows Cst. Rick O’Brien. Our thoughts are with his friends, family and colleagues. #heroesinlife pic.twitter.com/LJJnf8U1Ck— Durham Regional Police (@DRPS) September 23, 2023
Our thoughts and sympathies are with our colleagues at Ridge Meadows RCMP and with the family of Cst. Rick O’Brien. Cst. Rick O’Brien was killed in the line of duty today. You will see our officers wearing this blue ribbon, it signifies the loss of one of our own, the loss of a… pic.twitter.com/G9H7P79gXV— West Shore RCMP (@WestshoreRCMP) September 23, 2023
Outside of the Ridge Meadows RCMP detachment in Maple Ridge, a memorial has been set up, with dozens of flowers, candles, and notes being dropped off in memory of Const. O’Brien.
Our hearts are heavy tonight after hearing about the tragic loss of Constable Rick O’Brien. We had the privilege of working with Rick in the district and he will be deeply missed by our staff and students.— School District No. 42 (@sd42news) September 23, 2023
Constable O’Brien had a wonderful sense of humour and an amazing ability… pic.twitter.com/WPwKnNnrDP
Ridge Meadows RCMP Supt. Wendy Mehat called O’Brien’s death senseless and praised him as a great officer and person.
“Rick’s contribution to his work and his fellow team members at this detachment was immeasurable,” said Mehat. “He loved visiting schools, doing presentations, and participating in the community to support food drives and sports events.”
“While we grieve the loss of Const. Rick O’Brien, I would like to thank the community for your unwavering support to the Ridge Meadows RCMP. Rick was a dedicated police officer and a wonderful human being. We will miss him tremendously.”
Supt. Mehat said the department is also proud of its two other officers who were injured during the Sept. 22 operation, and shared that they are expected to fully recover from their injuries.
The mayors of both Maple Ridge and Pitt Meadows have also released statements, calling the incident a tragic reminder of the dangers that police officers face every day in service of their communities.
“The news of this tragedy has shaken the heart of our community, and it will take time to truly process the loss and the impact,” said Maple Ridge Mayor Dan Ruimy.
“The people of Maple Ridge will rally around the families and entire force as they face the difficult days and weeks ahead. We share our humble gratitude and respect for Const. O’Brien and all the dedicated police and peace officers who make the ultimate sacrifice to keep our communities safe.”
Pitt Meadows Mayor Nicole MacDonald shared similar sentiments, saying she was devastated to hear about the death of a local officer.
“My heart breaks for the family and fellow officers,” said Mayor MacDonald. “Thank you to all the men and women who selflessly respond to the call and put themselves at risk for the safety of the community.”
An online fundraiser has also been set up by the National Police Federation Benevolent Foundation to help collect money for the family of Const. O’Brien.
The fundraiser has already surpassed $45,000 in less than 20 hours, with the NDF Benevolent Foundation saying that all of the funds (minus the GoFundMe fees) will go to Const. O’Brien’s family to assist with any upcoming expenses.
Donations can be made by visiting www.gofundme.com/f/in-memory-of-cst-obrien.
Condolences can be sent to the family by emailing RCMP.Condolences-Condoleances.GRC@rcmp-grc.gc.ca.