Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Slain Quebec Constable Remembered as 'Superman' at Packed Funeral

Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Slain Quebec Constable Remembered as 'Superman' at Packed Funeral

Article excerpt

Slain Quebec constable remembered as 'hero'


OTTAWA - A young constable gunned down in northern Quebec was remembered Saturday as a community-minded "superman" who packed a tremendous amount of living into his 27 years.

Steve Dery, a three-year veteran of the Kativik Regional Police Service -- his first policing job -- was shot and killed last week while answering a call at a home in the community of Kuujjuaq.

More than 800 police officers marched in procession behind a pipe band up Sussex Drive as Dery was accorded full police honours in the national capital, his home town.

All police funerals are family affairs, but Dery's had a particular poignancy.

He was the second of three boys born to a former RCMP officer, and also has a cousin on the national police force in New Brunswick. One of Dery's brothers is a firefighter in Ottawa.

A massive Canadian flag was hoisted from two aerial ladder trucks over the street outside the cathedral.

While Steve Dery was a dare devil -- he's participated in the running of the bulls in Pamplona, Spain, and liked bungie jumping -- he was also well versed in the dangers of policing.

It made for an extremely intimate funeral, despite the massive crowd.

Yet another Mountie, family friend Robert Leclerc, struggled to read a letter written this week by the slain constable's Mountie father, Gilles Dery, who called his son a "great police officer. You are a hero."

"You are so complete at 27 years of age," wrote his admiring father.

He recalled his son's prowess at every sport, from hockey to baseball, lacrosse and rugby.

"Thank you for these memories," Leclerc read from the letter, his voice faltering several times.

"I'm going to think of you every day."

Dery and his partner came under fire after responding to a call at a residence in Kuujjuaq, a village with a population of 2,400, making it the largest community in the region. …

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