2021 Nominees

Brendan Johnston, Lindsay Police Service

Sergeant Brendan Johnston is my Police Hero. When my husband Constable Mike Broderick #71 died by suicide on November 5, 2021, it hit all of us really hard including myself, our family, our community and the Kawartha Lakes Police Service family. My husband was a very well liked man who was very respected by all who knew him. Much like Sergeant Brendan Johnston, my husband had become very close over the years and confided and looked up to Brendan just like a lot of the other staff of the Kawartha Lakes Police Service. He is that person that everyone seems to go to and for everyone that knows Brendan, he would do anything in his power to help. There is something to say about Brendan's character. He is smart, kind, down to earth, respectful as much as he is respected by others, thoughtful, past president of the Kawartha Lakes Police Association and now still part of the Police Association of Kawartha Lakes, and he goes above and beyond. Speaking of going above and beyond, this is what brings me to nominating Sergeant Brendan Johnston for this specific Police Hero Award. He stands out. Brendan helped search for my husband when I was worried that day. I knew in my heart something horrible happened and Brendan was honest with me and did what he needed to do on his end. He was not working that day but dropped everything and went to work and started a search for my husband while dealing with me on the side, with kindred perfection. Unfortunately, the outcome was not what we all wished for and again along with the Chief, President of the Police Association of Kawartha Lakes, and Brendan had the unthinkable task of coming to my door that night to tell me that my husband was gone. Then we all drove together to tell his mother and support her in any way. Sergeant Brendan Johnston has shown me and my family so much support. Phone calls/texts to check up on us, he organized for him and a few other officers to come and put up my Outdoor Christmas Lights, and when I wanted to come see my husbands "Memorial Wall" the fellow officers/staff had created Brendan took it upon himself to offer his free time and be there for me and my family members to take us in to see the "Memorial Wall" at different times. Please note as well that the "Memorial Wall" had such significance because it was also the place where my husband died. Knowing this, Brendan reached out to a specialist and talked to him about the family coming in and how to best explain and manage taking us all in to see it. He personally, arranged for Victim Services to be there present again and sat me down and we had about a half hour conversation about what to expect, the specialist said not to be in there for too long for example and Brendan really went out of his way to make sure we would all be okay. Sergeant Brendan Johnston still continues to check on myself and my family. I honestly don't know what I would have done without his help and support during all of this, and being mindful that he was really close with my husband and I know this tragic death has affected him as well. He put his own needs aside and helped a family in need. Sergeant Brendan Johnston is my Police Hero.

John Eddolls

Around 6am on Sunday, March 8, 2020 my brother was in distress. He left my mom's house just north of Belleville, ON and was driving to Port Colborne. We had been in contact with Belleville Police, but after his cell phone had pinged off a cell tower in the Toronto area, the Belleville Police could no longer help. Hours later, my brother made contact with my mom stating he was in a car wash and he had taken the transmission out of his car. He was still very distressed, he could hear voices telling him terrible things about himself and his loved ones. After attempts to contact different police services, I was directed to Halton Regional Police. My brother told Mom he was going to hide so "they" (the voices) couldn't find him. Halton Regional Police Acting Supervisor John Eddolls called me back and took information to help with the search...

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Kristi Smith

Kristi has to be calm, cool, collected to be a Peel Regional Police Service 911 dispatcher. She has to be able to rise to the occasion of what ever the call might be, then be able to go home to her family and still be a loving and caring daughter and mom. To learn she had to help a member of her own circle through a tragic event and still do her job just defines the type of person she is. For most, it would be too emotional to be rational and helpful. It takes special kinds of people to work in the police force in any capacity, but to be a dispatcher truly takes a strong individual.

Emma Crombeen

I met Woodstock Police Cst. Crombeen during a difficult time for me personally, as my daughter had threatened to kill myself and her two young children that I have custody of. It has been an ongoing issue as my daughter suffers mental health and addiction issues, and cannot be found any more to serve court documents. Through each interaction with Cst. Crombeen, she has always been straight forward with me about the process and I really appreciate that. She has always shown respect and with a human touch, not forgetting how painful this situation is on myself and grandkids. I am grateful she is on our Police force and thankful for her skills and tact! Thank you for contributing to our Community of Woodstock, and keeping us safe!

Steven Large

On March 10, 2020, Steven Large with the OPP was a quick thinking officer who used an available canoe sliding it across the ice to rescue a fisherman who had fallen through into the St. Lawrence River off Landon Bay while ice fishing. Officer Large wasn't worried about his safety, rather, just saving this individual and doing his duty. Exactly 1 year to the day, this rescued individual was happy to tell Officer Large he was back out fishing "all thanks to him." This would be the 2nd time in his career that Officer Large subjected himself to freezing water conditions in order to save a life. This is the most humble human being I know that would respond to this nomination as "I was just in the right place at the right time" and not think of himself as a hero.

Ron Boudreault

OPP Officer Ron Boudreault lives in Kirkland Lake, Ontario. On Dec 9, 2015 my mother, whom I had been taking care of at home, passed away while I went to get her and I coffee. I returned to the home and later learned that she had suffered a diabetic seizure that she didn’t recover from during the short time I was gone. Four years earlier, I had lost my father in the same home due to Crohns Disease so finding my mother this way was such a heart breaking moment in my life. After calling 911, a few officers showed up but Officer Boudreault was so wonderful and professional, he made an awful situation bearable... 

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Kip Wohlert

Kip Wohlert has been a member of the Child Sexual Exploitation Unit of the Ontario Provincial Police for many years. Kip always puts the needs of the child victim first. Kip has been role model to other officers in Ontario and Canada as an instructor at both the Canadian Police College and the Ontario Police College. Kip is always available to assist officers when dealing with the most difficult investigations of crimes against children. His role as an online investigator has lead to the arrest of people who prey on our most valuable resource - our children. As Kip has been involved in investigations that have brought people before the courts all over North America and other countries, he has developed a worldwide network of contacts in social media and law enforcement. Kip is a true hero that makes a difference in the lives of children.

Samantha Bigley

Constable Samantha Bigley has gone above and beyond in her role with the Bracebridge OPP. Not only does she continue to serve the community as a cognizant and capable officer of the law, ensuring local safety, she also takes time each week to visit those in need of support whether they suffer from drug addiction or mental health issues. She helped connect me with the CMHA in order to get my anxiety diagnosed properly and indirectly helped me get connected with a local healthcare practitioner in Muskoka. She has been doing this for years and she always tries to find a way not only to enforce, but also educate and support. And, most importantly, she does this everyday with a smile on her face.

Kent Taylor

In 2016, Court Officer Kent Taylor was invited to initiate and facilitate a community outreach program to support and mentor young men in challenging parental and life circumstances. Orillia and the surrounding community had many supports for young mothers, but none for the fathers. Many of the young men were experiencing challenges in their parental relationships, often involving in the criminal and/or family court systems. This led to Kent’s implementing a one-to-one, twelve week mentoring program... 

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Brooke McRoberts

It is so important to share that OPP Sgt. Brooke McRoberts represents our Indigenous community. She began policing in her community of Chippewas of Rama, and was a remarkable role model for all our children. Brooke truly represents community policing as she often extends herself and goes above and beyond in assisting our youth in education, prevention, and proactive role modeling. My own family has had a personal and positive experience with Brooke's approach to inclusion and diversion. She is a strong advocate for raising awareness for MMIW, a wonderful mother, great mentor for our youth, and a source of strong support by building the bridge of hope and strength as allies between Indigenous Peoples and the OPP.