Video – A “True Hero” Remembered on the 20th Anniversary of His Murder in Cobourg

In Editor Choice, Local, Police Blotter

It was the 20th anniversary for a Cobourg Police Officer who was killed in the early morning hours of May 15, 2004.

Constable Chris Garrett responded to an alleged robbery at the former Cobourg Hospital at the corner of D’arcy and Chapel Streets.

While taking notes from the alleged victim, Garrett was mortally wounded.

Before succumbing to his wound, Garrett fired his service weapon striking his assailant in the leg on his last shot.

The murderer hobbled away and phoned his mother who picked him up and took him to Northumberland Hills Hospital where he received treatment for his gunshot wound and was arrested and convicted of first degree murder.

It was later learned the assailant had a manifesto stating “chaos is coming” and had planned to kill numerous other people and officers.

Garrett thwarted the plan. He was later posthumously honoured with the Star of Courage presented to his son by the Governor General.

Each year, Garrett’s family, colleagues, friends and members of the public meet at Chris Garrett Memorial Park in Birchwood Trail.

Members of neighbouring services Northumberland OPP and Port Hope Police were in attendence.

Officers came from as far as Ottawa to attend the ceremony.

The Cobourg Police Pipes and Drums plays a number of songs during the ceremony.

Cobourg Police Chief Paul VandeGraaf spoke at the ceremony saying when Cobourg suffered the murder of Garrett, “it resonated across small and medium size services across Ontario.”

“We stand here today to recognize a hero. We stand here to recognize that person who provided the ultimate sacrifice to the community that he served.”

VandeGraaf said he wanted people to reflect the impact of what Chris sacrificed and the impact his murder had on everyone.

Calling Garrett a “true hero” ending his comments by saying, “far to many police officers, any one police officer who dies is to much, and were not seeing this trend go away. So we have to take these moments to really reflect on everybody who serves our community so well.”

Speaking with Garrett’s mother Eveyln, she said she still cries about the loss of her son.

But seeing the people come out each year to honour and remember Garrett does make her happy.

“When I see all the police and dignitaries and the band – it was beautiful. And the park was so pretty with the trees.

Recalling that tragic night, “seems like yesterday.”

“But it’s something you learn to live with. If you want to live a life – you keep going.”

Along with Garrett’s mother, her three daughters think about Chris all the time.

Her son was a relatively private person and would likely be embarrassed.

“He liked helping people but, he just liked to keep things to himself.”

But one thing she says firmly about her son, he was a proud police officer.

Pete Fisher
Author: Pete Fisher

Has been a photojournalist for over 30-years and have been honoured to win numerous awards for photography and writing over the years. Best selling author for the book Highway of Heroes - True Patriot Love

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