Two long-time Portage residents were honoured Tuesday at the local RCMP detachment for their service in the community. Bud and Rose Carriere headed up the Citizens On Patrol Program (COPP) and just retired from those roles.

RCMP Superintendent Jeff Asmundson presented them with certificates and a print depicting an RCMP officer with his horse standing on a hill. 

"We're really happy to hnour to Rose and Bud Carriere. We gave them a Certificate of Appreciation from the District Commander level as well as a gift from from the detachment. In terms of an RCMP print," says Asmundson. "We just really appreciate the community involvement and volunteerism, but they've dedicated to the City of Portage la Prairie and the people of this detachment. They're really part of our family and we really appreciate their efforts to keep Portage safe."

Bud shared his reaction over receiving the honour.

"It's not needed. That's not why we did it." 

Looking around at all the police officers gathered together, he added that's what he is going to miss; meeting people like this that are friends forever for them. 

He outlines what inspired them to get into volunteerism.

"To me, there was maybe a little bit that I could help with in little things in our community. When we first came here, they were having trouble in the area where we lived. And so, I talked to one of the RCMP members and he said, 'You should start a Neighbourhood Watch group.' So, we did and it just progressed from there."

Rose says she's very honoured and humbled by the recognition.

"But it's too much. Wherever we've lived, we've always felt that we need to take part in the community and be responsible for the community. That's what we've tried to do and it didn't take long for 28 years to go just like that. We've enjoyed it a lot. We've met a lot of wonderful people in this community that we worked with. So, we're going to miss that part."

Mayor Sharilyn Knox shared how much the Carrieres have assisted the RCMP and helped them maintain the force's good name in our area.

"We've always tried, " continues Carriere. "We make sure that we feed them as much as we can, but we have a lot of very good friends in the RCMP. Even when we lived in Langruth, we had a lot of friends in Amaranth that we've kept in touch with for the last 40-50 years, so it's just been a great relationship."