A retired Abbotsford Police sergeant and former media spokesperson has been identified as the vicim of a fatal head-on crash yesterday (Saturday) in Nanaimo.
Shinder Kirk was the driver of a pickup truck that was involved in a crash with another pickup at about 1:50 p.m. on Cedar Road near Cedar Bridge.
Nanaimo RCMP said two passengers – believed to be Kirk’s family members – were airlifted to hospital, with one taken to Vancouver and the other to Victoria. Their condition is not known at this time.
RCMP said no causes for the crash have yet been determined, but the investigation will continue, including mechanical inspections of the vehicles involved.
Kirk began his policing career with the Vancouver Police Department in 1981, moving 10 years later to the Abbotsford Police Department.
He was serving as a motorcycle cop and was filling in as a back-up media officer before being asked to take over the position full-time in 2000.
Kirk’s affable and calm manner soon earned him praise and respect from the media and the public alike.
He later became the media spokesperson for the RCMP Integrated Gang Task Force and then the Combined Forces Special Enforcement Unit (CFSEU).
In 2012, he announced his retirement after more than 30 years of policing.
He continued to live in Abbotsford with his wife Wendy, with whom he had two daughters.
Tributes to Kirk have been pouring in on social media.
“Shinder Kirk was professional, dedicated and passionate about making our communities safe from gang violence … We will miss him,” said Sgt. Brenda Winpenny, the current CFSEU spokesperson, on Twitter.
A tweet from the Surrey RCMP described Kirk as “a truly kind and dedicated police officer and amazing person,” while the CFSEU’s gang intervention team described him as “leader in gang prevention and intervention.”
Shinder Kirk was a professional, dedicated, and passionate about making our communities safe from gang violence. The thoughts of all of us at the CFSEU-BC go out to Shinder’s family and those who knew Shinder at this tragic time. We will miss him.
— Sgt Brenda Winpenny (@CfseuMRO) December 24, 2018
— Surrey RCMP (@SurreyRCMP) December 24, 2018
– with files from the Nanaimo News Bulletin