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article imageOfficials honour, remember fallen Toronto Sgt. Ryan Russell Special

By Andrew Moran     Jul 15, 2011 in Politics
Toronto - On a day that was both celebratory and sombre, the Toronto Mayor and Police Chief announced the official renaming and unveiling of Sergeant Ryan Russell Parkette as a “tribute to a dedicated police officer” who died in the line of duty.
In January, 35-year-old Toronto police officer Sergeant Ryan Russell, an 11-year veteran, was killed in the line of duty when he was hit a by a snowplow that was stolen along Avenue Road. Police Chief Bill Blair confirmed his death hours later in front of St. Michael’s Hospital.
A week later, the city was in mourning and thousands attended the procession, which started at Russell’s home division. More than 10,000 people, including 8,000 uniformed officers from across Canada and the United States, attended the funeral that was held at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre.
The assailant, Richard Kachkar, is charged with first-degree murder in the death of Russell.
Ward 20 Trinity-Spadina Toronto City Councillor Adam Vaughan introduced a motion in February to rename Dupont Parkette to Sergeant Ryan Russell Parkette. City council voted unanimously in favour of the name change.
On Friday, on a park with beautiful trees, green grass and the sight of harmony, dozens of Toronto police officers and city officials attended the official ceremonial sign unveiling at Avenue Road and Dupont Street.
Toronto Mayor Rob Ford, alongside Councillor Vaughan, Police Chief Bill Blair and members of the Russell family, helped unveil the parkette sign.
The Toronto Mayor called the parkette renaming as a “fitting tribute” to Russell. Ford stated that this is a good reminder that police officers and emergency service workers deserve the gratitude from the people of Toronto every day.
“Today we have another chance to pay our respects to Sgt. Ryan Russell,” said Toronto Mayor Ford. “He gave his life to keep people of this great city safe. Police Sgt. Ryan Russell was a loving husband to Christine, an adoring father to Nolan and a dedicated police officer. He was well respected by his peers. He was a mentor to those who came in contact with him through his work with the Guns and Gangs Task Force. He was a positive role model and a true hero.”
“I name this space the Sergeant Ryan Russell Parkette,” said Ford. “We will always, always remember.”
Blair called the slain officer a “hero, among the many officers who do extraordinary work each day to keep the community safe.”
“The last time that we gathered was a very sad and tragic day. A difficult day. So much a difficult day for Ryan’s family, his lovely wife and son. A difficult day for the Toronto Police Services. And a difficult day for all the citizens of Toronto,” said the Toronto Police Chief. “But today we are gathered to celebrate. We are gathered to celebrate a life of service and to remember the sacrifice of one very brave fellow cop who served this community.”
Christine Russell, with two-year-old Nolan standing by her side, asked that the park serve as a special place that will “protect the integrity and dedication, memory and sacrifice made by Ryan.”
She said that her husband would be honoured by the parkette.
Toronto City Councillor Adam Vaughan
Toronto City Councillor Adam Vaughan
Toronto Mayor Rob Ford
Toronto Mayor Rob Ford
Toronto Police Chief Bill Blair
Toronto Police Chief Bill Blair
Sgt. Ryan Russell s father
Sgt. Ryan Russell's father
Sgt. Ryan Russell s wife and son.
Sgt. Ryan Russell's wife and son.
Sgt. Ryan Russell s wife
Sgt. Ryan Russell's wife
City Councillor Mike Layton speaking Police Chief Bill Blair.
City Councillor Mike Layton speaking Police Chief Bill Blair.
Toronto Police Chief Bill Blair meets Sgt. Ryan Russell s son.
Toronto Police Chief Bill Blair meets Sgt. Ryan Russell's son.
Toronto Police Chief Bill Blair walking by his officers.
Toronto Police Chief Bill Blair walking by his officers.
Toronto Mayor Rob Ford handing Christine Russell a City Gift.
Toronto Mayor Rob Ford handing Christine Russell a City Gift.
Toronto Mayor Rob Ford (L) speaking with Police Chief Bill Blair. Photo taken July  15  2011
Toronto Mayor Rob Ford (L) speaking with Police Chief Bill Blair. Photo taken July, 15, 2011
Sergeant Ryan Russell Parkette unveiling.
Sergeant Ryan Russell Parkette unveiling.
Toronto Police Officers pose in front of parkette sign.
Toronto Police Officers pose in front of parkette sign.
Toronto Police Officers pose in front of parkette sign.
Toronto Police Officers pose in front of parkette sign.
Sergeant Ryan Russell Parkette
Sergeant Ryan Russell Parkette
More about Sergeant Ryan Russell Parkette, Sergeant ryan russell, Rob Ford, Toronto mayor, City council
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