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Surrey’s first police officer killed on duty honoured by new department

Const. George McDonald died in 1927
Lloyd Atchison (left), a nephew of Const. George McDonald, with Surrey Police Service Chief Constable Norm Lipinski at a dedication event Thursday, Sept. 9. (submitted photo)

The very first Surrey police officer killed in the line of duty has been honoured by the fledgling Surrey Police Service.

A framed photo of Const. George McDonald now hangs in the offices of Surrey’s incoming police department, along with two engraved door plaques.

An unveiling involved some of McDonald’s descendants on Thursday (Sept. 9), 94 years after he was killed while riding his police motorcycle on Pacific Highway (176th Street).

Back in 1927, on the afternoon of Sept. 4, the 26-year-old McDonald had been on the job for just a few months when he pursued a speeding motorist.

“During the brief pursuit, the officer attempted to avoid a farm vehicle entering the roadway when his motorcycle was clipped and veered into oncoming traffic,” notes a Surrey Police Service news release. “Constable McDonald received medical assistance at the scene and was transported to Royal Columbian Hospital where he later succumbed to his injuries on September 9, 1927.”

Originally from Abbotsford, McDonald is also among the honoured in the BC Law Enforcement Memorial, according to the SPS news release, and was successfully nominated by SPS Chief Constable Norm Lipinski for inclusion in the Canadian Police and Peace Officers National Memorial in 2022.

“We hope the citizens of Surrey will join George McDonald’s family, Surrey Police Service and the Provincial and National Policing Memorial organizations in honouring a hero who served his community and made the ultimate sacrifice.”

Also of note, Surrey Police Service’s badge will start at #22 with the first member (Lipinski), in memory of the 21 sworn members of the original Surrey municipal police department, including McDonald, from the years 1887 to 1951.

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Const. George McDonald on duty with Surrey’s first police department in 1927. (submitted photo)

Tom Zillich

About the Author: Tom Zillich

I cover entertainment, sports and news for Surrey Now-Leader and Black Press Media
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