Okanagan Mountie wraps up mental health walk

Watch as RCMP Sgt. Rob Farrer takes his final steps to fight mental health stigma

A local officer has made great strides against mental health stigma.

After more than 60 straight hours of walking day and night along the Okanagan Rail Trail, Sgt. Rob Farrer finished his 239 kilometre trek Tuesday afternoon at the Vernon detachment.

Dressed in red serge, Farrer was joined by S.M. Lavoie for the last 100 kilometres of the walk. The pair not only raised awareness to reduce the stigma of operational stress injuries among first responders, they succeeded in raising more than $12,000 so far towards purchasing a service dog.

“I appreciate everyone who has contributed and supported the dual purposes of raising awareness of PTSD and funds for a service dog,” said Farrer. “Unfortunately in the last week we in the police community have lost two more members to suicide. I had the privilege to have worked with one of them for several years and his loss, like so many others, has hurt a great number of people.”

Once they’d neared the end of the rail trail, Farrer and Lavoie were joined by a group of other RCMP members to escort them back to the detachment along Kal Lake Road.

For Farrer, the gruelling experience of the walk was parallel to the experience of living with PTSD – an analogy that was made complete by the help and support he received along the way in the form of food, coffee, and Lavoie’s company.

“If I tried to do this myself, my chances of success would have been very, very low,” said Farrer, 100 metres away from the finish.

Lavoie only joined for the final 100 kilometres of the walk, but he was with Farrer from the beginning. The two had formulated the idea together and had planned to walk as a pair the entire way. Lavoie was then deployed operationally and therefore couldn’t join him for the first leg, but he

“There was no way I was letting him finish alone,” Lavoie said in what sounded like another analogy to the world of PTSD – a world in which “no person gets left behind” is the mentality the walk was designed to foster.

To donate to the cause, visit the GoFundMe page at https://www.gofundme.com/f/osi-service-dog-courageous-companion.

READ MORE: Vernon cop to walk 239 km to fight stigma

READ MORE: Okanagan mountie begins rail trail fundraiser


@VernonNews
newsroom@vernonmorningstar.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

The price of child poverty: Women parenting alone forced to live harsh reality

Latest figures available show 1,630 children in Columbia Shuswap Regional District living in poverty

Salmon Arm family has unique tie to original Stanley Cup

Shuswap residents will have opportunity to view iconic trophy on March 7.

Couple in crash on Highway 1 mistake North Shuswap for Lower Mainland

Chase RCMP report Mercedes Benz collides with transport truck

Province looking into pollution complaint at Shuswap dairy farm

Farm along the Salmon River has drawn complaints from the Okanagan Indian Band

Salmon Arm RCMP, new immigrants get acquainted at police station

Tour of detachment provides opportunity to explore differences in judicial systems

Fashion Fridays: Tammy’s big makeover

Kim XO, helps to keep you looking good on Fashion Fridays on the Black Press Media Network

Mitchell’s Musings: Karma is king

One good turn leads to another and another…

Canada prepared to monitor for community spread of COVID-19: Tam

The U.S. confirmed one case of the new coronavirus, or COVID-19, in California Thursday

Decade-long health care battle draws to a close today in B.C.

Dr. Brian Day began his battle a decade ago against the B.C. government

Speaker ‘will not tolerate illegal activity’ on B.C. legislature grounds, says chief of staff

Chief of staff to the B.C. speaker Alan Mullen says situation with demonstrators appears ‘fluid’

Man missing in the South Okanagan located

Victor Genero has been located according to RCMP. He was last seen in Penticton on Feb. 24.

Conservative MP questions whether rail blockades constitute terrorism

Crown-Indigenous Relations Minister Carolyn Bennett travelled to B.C. to meet Indigenous leaders

Lawsuit over African mine can be heard in British Columbia: Supreme Court

B.C. courts dismissed Nevsun’s attempts to make Eritrea the forum for any lawsuit proceedings

Clothing, jewelry, purses: RCMP ask court about disposal of evidence in Robert Pickton case

Pickton was sentenced to life with no chance of parole for 25 years for the murders of six women

Most Read