During the Edmonton parade in which thousands of law enforcement agents from across the country converged to commemorate the life of Cst. Daniel Woodall, local officer Dino Falcone peeked out over the crowd.
“As far as the eye could see there were police officers marching, and I said ‘I can’t believe how many police officers are in this parade’,” he told 103.5 Juice FM.
Falcone made the trip alongside Cst. Shawn Zukowski.
“We were lined up for 9:30 a.m. on the legislative grounds in Edmonton, we had close to 4000 police officers, and we marched — sheriffs, correctional officers, RCMP, as well as other peace officers and municipal police represented from across Canada and North America.”
The Nelson pair marched for an hour along streets that had been blocked off as the procession made its way to the Shaw Conference Centre for a full regimental ceremony.
“It was really emotional, not only the trip but it hit home the risks we take sometimes to ensure the public is safe and our members are safe,” he said.
Falcone felt compelled to make the trip 20-hour trip — despite having other commitments, such as coaching soccer — because he wanted to pay respect to the 35-year-old Woodall, who was shot and killed on June 8.
“I wanted to support a fallen member and show the family that other police officers are there to support her and her family.”
Woodall, who worked in the hate crimes unit in Edmonton, was killed while executing an arrest warrant for 42-year-old Norman Raddatz.
Raddatz was later found dead from a self-inflicted gunshot wound. Another officer, Sgt. Jason Hurley, was shot in the lower back.
While at the ceremony, Falcone spotted former NPD constable Eric Enkirch, who now works in Lethbridge.
Falcone said he’d never participated in a full regimental funeral ceremony before, and expressed hope he wouldn’t have to attend another one.
Nelson Police Chief Wayne Holland said Zukowski and Falcone attended the funeral on their own time, with their expenses covered by the Nelson Police Association.
Holland called the reunion “a good memory for those three officers and a bit of sunshine even on such a tragic occasion.”