Minister for Police and Minister for Corrective Services the Honourable Mark Ryan MP paused in remembrance alongside Commissioner Katarina Carroll to honour fallen Queensland Police Service officers today.
Minister Ryan and Commissioner Carroll joined a small ceremony at the Queensland Police Service Memorial in the Brisbane City Botanic Gardens to mark National Police Remembrance Day.
In reflection of the 147 officers who have been killed in the line of duty, the Commissioner said the importance of the day weighed heavily on those in attendance at the ceremony.
“National Police Remembrance Day allows us all to come together, not only within the Queensland Police Service, but around the whole country,” Commissioner Carroll said.
“Whilst we honour our own officers, we also stand alongside our Victoria Police colleagues as they honour the recent and tragic loss of four of their own.
“The loss of Leading Senior Constable Lynette Taylor, Constable Glen Humphris, Senior Constable Kevin King and Constable Josh Prestney has impacted the nation’s police and has given us yet another reason to recognise the commitment, dedication and bravery of all past, present and future police officers.
“We also acknowledge the loss of our Australasian and Pacific jurisdictions of Fiji, New Zealand and Papua New Guinea.
“From the Fiji Police Force, Constable Siuta Nuimataiwalu, from the New Zealand Police, Constable Matthew Hunt, and from the Royal Papua New Guinea Constabulary, Senior Inspector Andrew Tovere, Sergeant David Hale, Senior Constable John Patiliu and Constable Timot Kavanamur.”
“Together, we pause, we reflect, and we honour those who have served before us or alongside us who made the ultimate sacrifice.
“While we can’t be with the family members and friends of those who are no longer with us today, we stand and reflect together in honour of their loved ones and acknowledge the unimaginable loss they have suffered.
“We will never forget them.”
Commissioner Carroll also acknowledged the important role of each and every police officer in making Queensland safe and the intrinsic sacrifice they and their families make for them to do so.
“Each officer takes a considerable risk every day they go to work in the name of making Queensland safe,” Commissioner Carroll said.
“Their honourable commitment deserves to be recognised; hence the importance of this date for the Service to come together.”
As members of the Queensland Police Service honoured and remembered all of their colleagues who have passed away, they also marked the anniversary of the deaths of the following police officers:
- Constable William Arundell of Watsonville Police Station was thrown from and kicked by his horse in 1980.
- Constable Albert Price of Mackay Police Station was stabbed while arresting an offender in 1905.
- Constable Robert Orme of Clermont Police Station was crushed by his injured horse in 1905.
- Constable William Mercer of Cloncurry Police Station fell from his horse, fracturing his skull in 1910.
- Plain Clothes Constable Arthur Crust of Brisbane Traffic Branch collided with a car on his motorbike in 1930.
- Sergeant First Class Theodore Herman of Blackall Police Station collapsed and died of a heart attack when arresting and escorting offenders in Blackall in 1950.
- Senior Constable Ronald Moore of Rolleston Police Station drowned while conducting water height checks at the Comet River Bridge in 1970.
- Technical Officer Grade One James Browning of Brisbane Radio Maintenance Division was killed in a traffic crash on his way home in 1980.
- Senior Constable Norm Watt of Rockhampton Dog Squad was killed while attending a domestic disturbance at Alton Downs in 2000.
- Sergeant Dan Stiller of Oxley District Traffic Branch was struck by an oncoming truck while escorting a wide load on the Bruce Highway near Mount Larcom in 2010.
Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk and Minister for Police Mark Ryan also joined Police Commissioner Katarina Carroll to honour and remember fallen officers of the Queensland Police Service at a candlelight vigil in Brisbane on Monday evening (September 28).
Representatives from the families of fallen officers gathered at the Queensland Police Service Memorial at dusk where the Premier, Commissioner Carroll and Minister Ryan lit candles in memory of those who have paid the ultimate sacrifice, on the eve of National Police Remembrance Day.
The Premier said she was extremely grateful for the work police did on behalf of all Queenslanders.
“Police are special people, they run towards danger to keep the rest of us safe.
“And sometimes, tragically, they make the ultimate sacrifice.
“It is up to all of us to make sure that sacrifice is honoured.”
Commissioner Carroll said that despite current circumstances, it was extremely important to come together and honour those officers who were no longer with us.
“Having the opportunity to dedicate time on the eve of National Police Remembrance Day to our families who feel the loss of their loved ones every day is so important,” Commissioner Carroll said.
“We are coming together to reflect on the sacrifice and unwavering commitment our fallen officers displayed for the safety of Queensland.
“Their deaths have not only had an impact on their loved ones but also the Service and the community.
“We will continue to gather to honour their sacrifice and memory and to make it known that they will never be forgotten.”
Minister Ryan said that the evening represented an important tradition in the lead up to National Police Remembrance Day in Queensland.
“The candlelight vigil means we are here for the family, the friends, the colleagues and the community members who have been touched by the brave and courageous officers who have been killed in the line of their duties,” Minister Ryan said.
“I also light my candle in tribute to members of the Service, both sworn and unsworn along with retired and former members who have passed away in the past 12 months.
“They represent an honourable commitment to serving the people of this state and for that, we reflect, we pause, and we hold their memory dear.”
Officers around the state also took part in an online vigil at the same time of the event, pausing to reflect.
Further information on National Police Remembrance Day can be found here: https://www.police.qld.gov.au/national-police-remembrance-day