FULL OF HEART, THEY WANTED TO MAKE A DIFFERENCE

MICHAEL SNIDER March 21 2005

FULL OF HEART, THEY WANTED TO MAKE A DIFFERENCE

MICHAEL SNIDER March 21 2005

FULL OF HEART, THEY WANTED TO MAKE A DIFFERENCE

PETER SCHIEMANN

It was, perhaps, Peter Schiemann’s selfless nature that contributed to his death. Reportedly off duty, out of uniform and unarmed, the four-year veteran of the Mayerthorpe detachment may have gone to James Roszko’s farm to lend a hand (the RCMP has declined comment). Born in Petrolia, Ont., Schiemann, 25, moved to Alberta as a youngster with his father, Don, a Lutheran pastor, his mother, Beth, younger sister Julia and older brother Michael. An adventurer who loved trying new things like skydiving, he’d planned on joining the Mounties since working part-time at a police car wash in Parkland County, near Edmonton, while in university. He was also a devoutly religious man. He once told his father, if the worst should ever befall him in the line of duty, “Dad, don’t worry-1 know where I’m going.”

LIONIDE JOHNSTON

To his friends, his twin brother and new bride, the 32-year-old Johnston was a carefree guy with an infectious smile. Part daredevil and a crack pistol shot, Johnston was born nine minutes ahead of his brother, Lee-who also became an RCMP constableand grew up in Lac la Biche, Alta. In 1997, he survived a terrible motorcycle-racing accident, fought his way out of a coma and then worked to repair his broken body. Three years later, he passed his RCMP physical; it was his brother who presented him with his badge. Johnston leaves behind Kelly, his wife of barely 3V2 months. “We were supposed to have a long and beautiful future together,” she said, surrounded by family two days after his death. “There’s nothing in this world that can replace my handsome Leo.”

BROCK MYROL

With his square jaw and dimpled chin, Myrol could have been the RCMP’s poster boy. But he ended up being on the job for a scant 17 days. Born in Outlook, Sask., and raised in Red Deer, Alta., Myrol, 29, graduated from the RCMP academy on Feb. 7 after being voted valedictorian by his class, and started at the Mayerthorpe detachment on Valentine’s Day. “He wanted to make a difference,” said Pastor Art Hundeby at last week’s memorial service. “That’s why he decided on a career with the RCMP.” Before the Mounties, Myrol travelled the world, trained to be a field guide in Africa, learned how to play guitar and earned a black belt in karate. He proposed to his girlfriend Anjila over the Christmas holidays, giving her an engagement ring. His favourite place was sitting with family beside a campfire and singing songs with his dad.

ANTHONY GORDON

Described by his friend Const. Barrie Baskerville as a “friendly, gentle giant of a man,” the six-foot-four Gordon had wanted to be a Mountie since Grade 1. Raised in Red Deer, he had a great sense of humour-his imitation of Dr. Evil’s pinky-finger pose even appears in his wedding photos. Gordon, 28, excelled at sports, enjoying golf, basketball, baseball and skiing. But the lights of his life were his rambunctious two-year-old son, Spencer, and his wife, Kim, pregnant with their second child. Like the others, he left much unfinished: he wanted to build a house for his family, and teach his son how to fix things. “He looked forward to a new baby,” said Baskerville. “And to growing old with Kim, with his children around him.”

MICHAEL SNIDER