Participants in a candlelight walk for Const. Sarah Beckett make their way down Goldstream Avenue in Langford on Sunday night.

Hundreds hold a light for fallen West Shore RCMP officer

Sarah Beckett remembered as a caring individual who wanted to do more to help her community

Sarah Beckett was remembered Sunday as a kind and caring soul who wanted to do more for her community after donning her RCMP uniform for the first time.

A crowd estimated at more than 1,000 people walked with candles in a silent procession along Goldstream Avenue on a mild night to honour the fallen West Shore RCMP constable.

With the crowd of friends, colleagues and supportive community members packed tightly around the cenotaph in Veteran’s Memorial Park, Beckett’s colleague, Cpl. Scott Hilderley recalled first meeting Beckett when she was in high school at Spectrum Community School.

She had signed up for the Greater Victoria Police Camp, which put teens through their paces and gave them a taste of the physical and mental demands of police work. Afterward, Hilderley said, Beckett told him, “This is what I want to do.”

He connected with her upon her graduation from RCMP Depot a couple years later, when she told him that her dream had come true. Sent to Port McNeill for her first assignment, she contacted Hilderley later to say she “wanted to do more;” she wanted to not only work to catch criminals but work to help people find the good in themselves.

That led her to learn to be a DARE program (Drug Abuse Resistance Education) facilitator with the RCMP and through that work she was able to give back even more, Hilderley said, and touch the lives of young people in her communities.

The sombre ceremony at the park, hosted by event organizer Ryan Carveth, also included a performance of the Sarah McLachlan song “Angel” by Stephanie Greaves, accompanied by Jann Arden keyboardist Darcy Phillips; and words of support from Janelle Breese Biagoni, whose police officer husband, Gerald Breese, was killed in a motorcycle crash while on active duty.

Terri Smith of Highlands was among those who attended. Having found Carveth’s posting on Facebook that day, she decided to come down and join the community in this healing event.

“I felt it was just important to show my feelings and also to support the people that have to go on,” she said, “the police officers that have to carry on and do their jobs. This is my neighbourhood and I wanted to be here to show solidarity.”

Beckett’s official memorial service is scheduled for 2 p.m. Tuesday at The Q Centre. A parade of an estimated 4,000 police and other emergency responders is scheduled to march up Island Highway from Wilfert Road near the Great Canadian Casino, to the arena starting at 1 p.m.

editor@goldstreamgazette.com

Just Posted

Volunteers needed for annual Mother’s Day walk

Breast Cancer Society of Canada hosts annual Mother’s Day event

Saanich rental project wins silver by going ‘green’

The Verve rental housing project stands at the corner of Boleskine Road and Whittier Avenue

420 celebrations turn over new leaf at B.C. legislature

Cannabis is legal for the first time in the 21-year existence of the 420 event in Victoria

Big Brothers Big Sisters’ Bowl for Kids’ Sake returns to Langford

Annual fundraising event held from April 26 to 28

VIDEO: ‘Stewie the Starfish’ mascot revealed at Premier League kickoff party

Pacific FC kickoff party scores in Victoria Inner Harbour

WATCH: Movie star and PACE alum Calum Worthy talks musical theatre and his career

“American Vandal” and “Austin and Ally” actor has been returning to the program for over 20 years

POLL: How often does your family use BC Ferries?

Navigating the lineups for BC Ferries is a way of life for… Continue reading

Crime Stoppers most wanted for Greater Victoria for the week of April 16

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

Waste not: Kootenay brewery leftovers feed the local food chain

Spent grains from the Trail Beer Refinery are donated to local farmers and growers, none go to waste

Deck collapses in Langley during celebration, 35 people injured

Emergency responders rushed to the Langley home

B.C. mom wages battle to get back four kids taken from her in Egypt

Sara Lessing of Mission has help from Abbotsford law firm

VIDEO: Fire guts Peachland home

Crews are still on scene pumping water onto the blaze in the Okanagan neighbourhood

$6K raised in one day’s time for family of woman gunned down in Penticton

GoFundMe launched for family of Darlene Knippelberg, to pay for funeral costs and other expenses

B.C. mountain biker sent home from hospital twice, despite broken vertebrae

Released in Maple Ridge to go home with three fractured vertebrae

Most Read