Into the sunset
Constable's dreams come true

Daniel MacIsaac
Northern News Services

INUVIK (Oct 29/99) - Colin Allen Jr.'s recent graduation from the RCMP training academy allowed him to realize two long-held dreams -- to become a Mountie and to get married.

For no sooner was Allen back in Inuvik from Regina and training with the force then he joined forces with fiance Wanda Snow at a ceremony on Saturday.

"That was the hardest part of training," said Allen, "I found it hard being away from family and their support."

Allen and Snow had been engaged for more than three years, but decided to postpone their wedding until Allen had completed his training. Snow remained in Inuvik with the couple's two-year-old daughter, Danielle.

Allen said he's been hoping to join the RCMP for years and was motivated by his cousin, Gerry Kisoun, now retired from the force and working for Parks Canada -- and a member of his wedding party. Allen began in 1997 by serving with the Inuvik force through the Aboriginal Cadet Development program, and then headed down to Saskatchewan earlier this year after passing the entrance exam.

Allen said his troop in Regina, or "Buffalo" as the cadets called it, consisted of eight Northerners of aboriginal descent, a fact that made being away from home easier to take.

"It was kind of unique because we all knew what to expect from one another and there was a sense of working together," he said.

Allen said he did see at least one familiar face in Regina, however, that of Inuvik's Const. Dino Norris, who was completing a tour with the Musical Ride and heading out to British Columbia to take up a new assignment.

Of course, life has become somewhat of a musical ride for Allen, too. Just days after placing the handcuffs on Snow at the Christian Assembly Church, the family was off to start a new life in Hay River -- a posting Allen said he chose deliberately.

"I'm looking forward to going into the community and dealing with people on a one-to-one basis," he said, "but I didn't want to do any policing in Inuvik, because I want to keep my home my home and work as something separate."

Allen and Snow may have moved to Hay River, but several new detachment arrivals are making their homes in Inuvik. Recent arrivals include commander Sgt. Bob Gray, transferred from Hay River and having served in Fort McPherson. Cpl. Jeff Hurry has arrived from Yellowknife while other new members include Const. Bob Hodyr from Sanikiluaq, Const. Daryl Krumbhols from Cambridge Bay, Const. Arthur Smith from Tuktoyaktuk and Csts. Jeff Hildebrandt and Vic Steinhammer.