New RCMP inspector settling into Comox Valley

Blair McDonald credits a poster in university in helping him begin a career in the RCMP.

Blair McDonald credits a poster in university in helping him begin a career in the RCMP.

Twenty-seven years later, McDonald’s career has taken him from postings across Alberta, to the RCMP ‘depot’ academy in Regina, and now to the Comox Valley, as the detachment’s new officer in charge.

McDonald recently took over the inspector position from Tom Gray, who retired earlier this year.

“Every day is always different,” said McDonald, who has now been in the position overseeing the detachment for more than one month.

“(The Comox Valley detachment) is a well-running ship. It serves as a model for crime-reduction strategies,” he added.

McDonald explained his interest in police work began when he saw a poster while checking marks at university for a four-month summer job opportunity with the RCMP.

“It solidified my interest,” he added.

Most of his time served with the RCMP had been in Alberta, before becoming an instructor at the depot in Regina for five years.

McDonald was then posted to the detachment in Hinton, Alta., near Jasper National Park.

McDonald explained many of his duties include working in an administrative role out of the detachment, or with elected officials and public events. He added he recently had a meeting with Col. Jim Benninger, the commanding officer at CFB Comox about how both the military and RCMP can work together within the community.

He said the two organizations have a very strong working relationship, which was exemplified this year when a Korean Air jet had to make an emergency landing at the Comox Valley Airport.

“I had just gotten here when that happened, but the two organizations worked very closely and everything went very well,” he noted.

McDonald added his goals are to acclimatize himself to the community and the detachment, and looking at a long-term goal of creating new, larger office for the RCMP within the Comox Valley.

“The Valley is a wonderful community, and I look forward to working closely with 19 Wing and local governments,” he added.

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