Estevan Mothers Against Drunk Driving chapter community leader Connie Hagel presents the Van De Vorst Family Award to Estevan Police Service Const. Paul Chabot.

A member of the Estevan Police Service has been recognized for apprehending impaired drivers in 2019.

Const. Paul Chabot was presented with the Van De Vorst Family Award for Excellence in Prevention at the police station Friday by Connie Hagel, who is the community leader of the local chapter of Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD). He apprehended eight impaired drivers in 2019, the most of anyone in the EPS, and received the Van De Vorst silver award.

The award is presented to officers who arrest a certain number of impaired drivers in a year. Chabot had the most with the EPS.

“It’s to raise awareness, of course, but it’s also to recognize the efforts the police do in catching impaired drivers,” said Hagel.

Chabot was presented with a certificate, a medal, a MADD mask and other items by Hagel.

He was nominated by someone at the police station, and the nomination then went to Saskatoon for approval.

The recognition is named after the Van De Vorsts, a family of four killed by an impaired driver in a collision near Saskatoon in 2016. Members of the family created the award to salute officers.

Hagel, Chabot and Deputy Police Chief Murray Cowan said they hope to see a time in which this award isn’t presented in Estevan, because it would mean nobody is driving while impaired in the city.

Cowan said he saw a presentation by the Van De Vorsts at the meeting for the Saskatchewan Association of Chiefs of Police, with photos and videos of the crime scene, and it was very moving to watch.

“You want to talk about emotion? They get extremely emotional every time they talk about this and do this presentation,” said Cowan.

It means a lot to the Van de Vorst family when they see people like Chabot receiving the award, and the work he is doing to take impaired drivers off the road.

Hagel said the Van De Vorst family travels across the country to make presentations, and would love to visit each community to present a certificate to an officer.

Hagel said the local MADD chapter will be busy over the next few weeks with Christmas approaching. There was a spot check in the community on Saturday night due to Halloween, while additional spot checks will happen in the coming weeks.

“We can’t do a whole bunch (due to COVID), but we’re trying our best, and we’re still here. We’re still raising awareness.”

The annual Red Ribbon Campaign was launched Nov. 1. People will tie a red ribbon to their vehicle or another possession to express a commitment to sober driving.

Source: Estevan Mercury


Last updated on: 2021-01-25 | Link to this post