Monday April 5, 2021 | LANGFORD, BC
by Mary P Brooke, Editor | Island Social Trends
Five years ago on April 5, 2016, Cst Sarah Beckett of the West Shore RCMP detachment was suddenly killed in a vehicle incident in the wee hours of the morning at a central Langford intersection at Goldstream Avenue and Peatt Road. She had only recently returned to the job after being on maternity leave. She was 32, and the mother of two young sons, leaving her husband a widower.
Today amidst the swirl of the COVID pandemic health emergency, the RCMP West Shore detachment issued a statement of remembrance about Cst Beckett, with these comments from Inspector Todd Preston, Officer in Charge, West Shore Detachment:
“Today marks five years since the passing of one of our own. Over these past five years, there have been many changes at the West Shore RCMP detachment. Staff have come and gone through the detachment doors however, the spirit and memory of Constable Sarah Becket remains very much alive.
“We, along with the community she served, remember her each time we pass her memorial inside the foyer of the Detachment; when we visit the garden planted out front of the Detachment; or when we take our families to play at the Sarah Beckett Memorial playground.
“Our Detachment strives to honour Sarah and her legacy in many ways. Five years ago, our Detachment pledged to public that we would tirelessly work to identify and removed impaired drivers from the roads. We can proudly say that since April 5th, 2016, our officers have conducted investigations resulting in over 900 impaired driving related charges. These investigations were successful, in part, because of the public’s assistance. We are very fortunate to have a supporting community that contributes immensely to the safeguarding of our public safety.
“Thank-you for your ongoing support. Next time you drive by the playground built in her memory or see the flowers planted in her garden out front of the Detachment; please take a moment to remember the sacrifice she made for your community. I can assure you that we will continue to honour Constable Sarah Beckett’s memory in a way that she would appreciate.”
Scholarship and park:
The Capital Regional District (CRD) launched a $2,000 Sarah Beckett Memorial Scholarship a few years ago, to support one or more high school graduates each year who are seeking a career in law enforcement.
In April 2019 on a rainy Saturday there was a Sarah Beckett 5K fundraising run in Langford to support the CRD scholarship.
Later in 2019, toward the end of summer, the City of Langford opened a new children’s playground in the Glen Lake area behind the former Westhills Stadium (now called Starlight Stadium) to honour Sarah Beckett who lost her life in the line of duty. The bright new playground equipment installed upon a rubberized surface is open for community use.
This year there is a Sarah Beckett Memorial Run on Mother’s Day weekend, May 8 and 9, 2021.
RCMP serving the west shore:
The RCMP West Shore Detachment serves Colwood, Highlands, Langford, Metchosin, View Royal, Songhees First Nation and Esquimalt First Nation.
During COVID there has been no change to the RCMP’s response to critical and emergency matters. RCMP detachments remain open and local police officers continue to be present in the community to ensure community safety.