Windsor Police Service turns 150
By Alyssa Leonard
When Canada was becoming a country, Windsor’s police force was being created and this year they are both celebrating a special birthday — 150 years.
The Windsor Police Service have great plans for their upcoming anniversary. Superintendent Ted Hickey, chair of the organizing committee for the 150th, said celebrations will take place from May 1-5. The week will be filled with events for both staff and the community including a memorial and appreciation service, parade, community barbeque, gala, history lecture and the law enforcement torch run.
Hickey said following the parade and equipment display on May 2 there will be a community barbeque with an open air display.
“Officers from our specialty units, K9, ESU, the bomb squad, the boat, members of patrol — they’re going to put on a display where members of the public can walk around and see the equipment we use,” said Hickey. “Some displays by ESU will be them rappelling off the building and from the rafters.”
“This is the opportunity for them to get a behind the scenes peek of what’s going on with the Windsor Police Service and what’s been going on for the past 150 years,” said Kish-Lewis.
There is also a tentative plan for a dedication of an overpass on the Herb Gray Parkway on May 5 in honour of the anniversary of the death of Senior Constable John Atkinson in May 2006.
“It’ll trigger a lot of emotions I think, that day,” said Hickey. “(Bridges are) something that has typically been reserved for the OPP and we got the opportunity to dedicate one to John.”
In addition to these events, the WPS will have a historical exhibit on display at the Art Gallery of Windsor starting May 1 until June 30.
“It will have pictures, memorabilia, old badges,” said Hickey. “Anything we can get our hands on.”
Hickey added that if any members of the community have old photos or memorabilia and want to share them with the police, they are more than welcome to get in touch with them. Their items may be put on display in the museum for the duration of the exhibit.
According to Windsor’s police chief Al Frederick, in 1867 the council-of-the-day passed a motion to form a police service and hired a police chief and three constables. This happened before the town of Windsor gained its city status in 1892 and explains how the WPS is 25 years older than the city of Windsor.
For event schedule updates, visit the WPS website at police.windsor.on.ca.