Sgt. Shinder Kirk is shown here during a 2013 press conference in Cranbrook with the Combined Forces Special Enforcement Unit. (Black Press file photo)

Sgt. Shinder Kirk is shown here during a 2013 press conference in Cranbrook with the Combined Forces Special Enforcement Unit. (Black Press file photo)

Retired B.C. police sergeant and media officer dies in head-on crash

Shinder Kirk of Abbotsford died Saturday in collision in Nanaimo

A retired Abbotsford Police sergeant and former media spokesperson has been identified as the vicim of a fatal head-on crash Saturday in Nanaimo.

Shinder Kirk was the driver of a Chevy pickup truck that was involved in a collision with a Ford pickup at about 1:50 p.m. on Cedar Road near Cedar Bridge.

Nanaimo RCMP said two passengers from the Chevy were airlifted to hospital, with one taken to Vancouver and the other to Victoria. Their injuries were serious but not life-threatening, according to police.

The 22-year-old male driver of the Ford and his adult female passenger suffered minor injuries that did not require hospitalization.

RCMP said no causes for the crash have yet been determined, but the investigation will continue, including mechanical inspections of the vehicles involved.

Investigators said they do not believe that alcohol or speed were contributing factors, but weather and road conditions have not been ruled out.

A GoFundMe campaign indicates that the passengers in Kirk’s vehicle were his wife and adult daughter. The page (search “Tragic Holiday Accident” at gofundme.com) was set up to raise money for his daughter, who suffered a broken leg, broken wrist and other injuries and will be unable to work.

Kirk began his policing career with the Vancouver Police Department in 1981, moving 10 years later to the Abbotsford Police Department.

RELATED: Driver killed as two pickup trucks collide on Cedar Road

RELATED: New public face for organized crime unit

He was serving as a motorcycle cop and was filling in as a back-up media officer before being asked to take over the position full-time in 2000.

Kirk’s affable and calm manner soon earned him praise and respect from the media and the public alike.

He later became the media spokesperson for the RCMP Integrated Gang Task Force and then the Combined Forces Special Enforcement Unit (CFSEU).

In 2012, he announced his retirement after more than 30 years of policing.

He continued to live in Abbotsford with his wife Wendy, with whom he had two daughters.

Tributes to Kirk have been pouring in on social media, including from Premier John Horgan.

“He was a warm and caring man, dedicated to fighting gang violence, and a much admired leader in the South Asian community,” he said on Twitter.

Abbotsford Police Chief Mike Serr wrote that the department had “lost a brother” and described Kirk as “a true gentleman who will be missed.”

Sgt. Brenda Winpenny, the current CFSEU spokesperson, also posted on Twitter.

“Shinder Kirk was professional, dedicated and passionate about making our communities safe from gang violence … We will miss him,” she said.

A tweet from the Surrey RCMP described Kirk as “a truly kind and dedicated police officer and amazing person,” while the CFSEU’s gang intervention team described him as “leader in gang prevention and intervention.”

– with files from the Nanaimo News Bulletin


@VikkiHopes
vhopes@abbynews.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

Vandals burned a hole in the platform at the top of the Somenos Marsh Open Air Classroom early on the morning of Thursday, April 22. (Kevin Rothbauer/Citizen)
Arson closes Somenos Marsh viewing platform

Fletcher estimates the damage at more than $5,000.

Pharmacist Barbara Violo arranges empty vials of the Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine that she has provided to customers at the Junction Chemist, an independent pharmacy in Toronto, Monday, April 19, 2021. Younger Canadians in several provinces are now able to get the AstraZeneca vaccine. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
AstraZeneca vaccine appointments fill up fast on Vancouver Island

More pharmacies expected to be added as supply increases

A B.C. Centre for Disease Control map shows new COVID-19 cases by local health area for the week of April 11-17. (BCCDC image)
BCCDC says fresh COVID-19 cases down in most Island Health areas

Nanaimo sees its fewest new COVID-19 cases since mid January

More sleeping cabins for the homeless in the Cowichan Valley could soon be put in place if a $2.5-million grant application to the UBCM Strengthening Communities’ Services funding program is successful. (File photo)
Funding sought to expand homeless initiatives in Cowichan Valley

$2.5-million grant would see more sleeping cabins and outreach projects

The old Stanley Gordon school in Lake Cowichan. (Lexi Bainas/Gazette file)
Editorial: Old school properties represent potential for our areas

There are opportunities, often sitting right in the middle of our small communities.

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and United States President Joe Biden smile as they say farewell following a virtual joint statement in Ottawa, Tuesday, February 23, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Trudeau pledges to cut emissions by 40% to 45% by 2030, short of U.S. goal

Trudeau announced target during a virtual climate summit convened by U.S. President Joe Biden

MLA Shirley Bond, right, answers questions during a press conference at Legislature in Victoria, B.C., on February 19, 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
Former B.C. gaming minister says she wasn’t told directly about dirty cash flowing to casinos

Shirley Bond said Thursday civil forfeiture, gang violence and gambling addiction were also major concerns in 2011

RCMP Constable Etsell speaks to tourists leaving the area at a police roadblock on Westside Road south of Fintry, B.C., Thursday, July 23, 2009. THE CANADIAN PRESS/ Yvonne Berg
B.C. police say they take ‘exception’ to conducting roadblocks limiting travel

Asking the police to enforce roadblocks exposes officers to further risk and possible COVID-19 infections, says federation president Brian Sauve

As part of the province’s strategy to combat the opioid overdose crisis, take-home naloxone kits have been distributed throughout the province. (Courtesy of Gaëlle Nicolussi)
Vancouver Island could be at its worst point of overdose crises yet: medical health officer

Island Health issued overdose advisories for Victoria, various communities in the last two weeks

The conservation service confirmed they do not relocate cougars from settled areas but that euthanasia is not necessarily the fate for an animal in the Fanny Bay area. The hope is that the animal will move on to wild areas. (File photo)
Woman hopes cat-stalking Fanny Bay cougar can avoid euthanization

Conservation officers do not relocate the animals from Vancouver Island

Tofino residents expressed frustration over a recent post by Long Beach Lodge owner Tim Hackett that falsely claimed all residents have been vaccinated. (Westerly file photo)
Resort owner apologizes for suggesting Tofino is safe to travel to

Long Beach Lodge owner Tim Hackett apologizes to community and visitors

BC Hydro released a survey Thursday, April 22. It found that many British Columbians are unintentionally contributing to climate change with their yard maintenance choices. (Pixabay)
Spend a lot of time doing yard work? It might be contributing to climate change

Recent BC Hydro survey finds 60% of homeowners still use gas-powered lawnmowers and yard equipment

Journal de Montreal is seen in Montreal, on Thursday, April 22, 2021. The daily newspaper uses a file picture of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau dressed in traditional Indian clothing during his trip to India to illustrate a story on the Indian variant of the coronavirus. Paul Chiasson/The Canadian Press
Montreal newspaper blasted for front-page photo of Trudeau in India

Trudeau is wearing traditional Indian clothes and holding his hands together in prayer beside a caption that reads, ‘The Indian variant has arrived’

Police executed a search warrant at the Devils Army Clubhouse on Petersen road in Campbell River on August 10, 2017.
Murder trial: Victim left to conclude out-of-court settlement on the day he disappeared

Trial of Richard Alexander in death of John Dillon Brown continues in B.C. Supreme Court in Victoria

Most Read