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RCMP Gazette

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Re: RCMP Gazette

Heather (View posts)
Posted: 1163888590000
Classification: Obituary
Edited: 1163927835000
Surnames: McDowell
From the RCMP site

Feb 28th, 2003 - 10:22:50 AM File #E-Division 2002


February 28, 2003

Oliver, BC: The last living member of the RCMP involved in the 1932 "Mad Trapper of Rat River" man-hunt died last week. Retired RCMP Member, Cpl. Robert McDowell, aged 94 years, passed away peacefully on Thursday, Feb. 20 at Heritage House in Oliver B.C.

With Cpl. McDowell's passing, Canada lost a formidable hero. During the months of January and February 1932, then Cst. Robert McDowell was involved in one of the most infamous man-hunts this country has ever known.

The nationally touted "Arctic Circle War" began as a routine visit to Albert Johnson's cabin in the Arctic near Aklavik, on a theft complaint. That visit resulted in the shooting and wounding of then Cst. Alfred King. Cst. McDowell rescued Cst. King by dragging him away from the line of fire and making a 20-hour journey by dog sled to a doctor. For the next two months, Cst. McDowell was part of a 21-person posse set on capturing Albert Johnson, a.k.a "The Mad Trapper of Rat River". During that man-hunt an RCMP Member, Cst. Millen, lost his life and an Army officer was wounded. The "Artic Circle War" eventually came to an end when the Mad Trapper was killed during a shoot out with police.

"We may have lost Cpl. Robert McDowell in body, but he will be forever alive as a legend in our hearts and minds," says Sgt. Major Hugh Stewart.

A memorial service will be held Tuesday, March 4, 11:00 a.m. from Graham Funeral Chapel in Oliver, BC.

For questions, please contact:

Sgt. Major Hugh S. Stewart
Executive Advisory N.C.O. to the Deputy Commissioner Pacific Region &
Commanding Officer "E" Division
Tel: (604) 264-2044
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