The family of slain police officer Const. Steve Dery is expressing gratitude to all cops and firefighters who traveled to Ottawa for his funeral.
“We would also like to thank our friends, colleagues, and people from everywhere for their words of encouragement and sympathy wishes,” father Gilles Dery wrote in an e-mail to the Sun. (A full copy of their letter is attached at left to this article.)
“The numerous testimonies received confirm that our son was an excellent police officer, and that his joy of living touched everyone who knew him. We will forever be proud of him.”
Dery worked in Kuujjuaq and Kangirsuk — Inuit villages in northern Nunavik — as a member of the Kativik Regional Police Force.
He was killed in the line of duty March 2 while responding to a domestic disturbance.
A police funeral was held in the capital on March 9.
The family also praised KRPF Chief Aileen MacKinnon, Ottawa Police Chief Charles Bordeleau, and all officers “who supported us during these difficult times, and those who participated in the ceremony to give us the opportunity to say goodbye to our son.”
Dery, 27, grew up in Rockland and Orléans.
He was very involved in sports, said Gilles.
Donations will be directed to help underprivileged children in rural Quebec by paying for sports equipment and other gear to occupy kids and keep them out of trouble.
A Facebook group named Kuujjuaq Recreation details events for organized hockey, volleyball, karate, dance, cycling, basketball, soccer, and snowshoeing.
In addition, children are seen baking, taking part in an obstacle course, cross-country skiing, and ice fishing.
Gilles and Celine Dery are planning to take a trip up north to see where their son worked.
Cheques can be made out to the ‘Kuujjuaq Recreation Committee’ and mailed:
c/o Gilles & Celine Dery
1835 Belcourt Blvd.
Orléans, ON K1C 4N3
c/o Chief Aileen MacKinnon
Kativik Regional Police Force
P.O. Box 780
Kuujjuaq, QC J0M 1C0