Kevin Minguy believes his late RCMP officer father, Jean, would be proud of the young man he’s become.
Now 19 and studying political science at the University of Calgary, Minguy’s life has been given an extra boost as he was named the first ever recipient of the Police and Peace Officers’ Memorial Ribbon Society of Canada.
The award, handed out Saturday at the Vernon RCMP detachment where his dad worked until his death, on duty, in June 2005, will cover up to 80 per cent of Minguy’s tuition and books, including general fees, over the next four years as he works toward his degree.
The scholarship pays up to $50,000 over four years.
“We are pleased to award you the first memorial scholarship,” said Shawn Coady, president of the Police and Peace Officers’ Memorial Ribbon Society of Canada, to Minguy at the ceremony. “We the directors of the society wish you every success with your continued education and future endeavours.”
Accompanied to the presentation by his mom, Carol, younger brother Colin, and his girlfriend, Ashley Paradis, Minguy was honoured to be the first recipient.
“It’s great and I want to thank the society and my mom, as well,” said Minguy. “It’s nice to have my family here. I know my dad would be proud of me, that I’m doing something with my life, going to post-secondary school and making something of myself.”
The society was started in 1998 when an officer died back east, and the organization thought it was important to recognize an officer that lost his or her life in the line of duty.
A black and blue ribbon logo was created and became the society’s national symbol.
Jean Minguy drowned in Okanagan Lake after he fell off an RCMP boat while on duty.
The scholarship was created in February of this year and announced in Ottawa.
“It was created for the children of our fallen officers,” said Coady. “It will pay for the tuition and books of all kids who wish to go to post-secondary institutions to ensure they carry on with their education and become excellent members of society.”
The scholarship is also good for children of fallen members who wish to attend trade or technical schools.
Carol Minguy saw the announcement on TV.
“As the man was explaining the scholarship I thought, ‘That’s our family,’” said Carol. “I mentioned it to Kevin and his cousin from Quebec City who was visiting at the time and I said I was going to put his name in.
“The scholarship helps out a great deal. We’re very grateful.”
Kevin and Colin were both presented a limited edition print titled “Salute To Our Fallen Heroes.” the print depicts two police officers saluting the national peace officers’ memorial pavilion in Ottawa to honour all of the men and women killed in the line of duty since Confederation.
Standing in the memorial pavilion are the spirits of three officers representing those killed, returning the salute.
An RCMP badge is at the top of the print and the society’s black and blue ribbon is at the bottom.
The last Sunday of September every year is Police and Peace Officers’ National Memorial Day.