From patrolling the streets of Cornwall to now writing a book, Police Sergeant Thom Racine has developed a keen understanding and appreciation of his hometown.
Cornwall - November 22, 2011 - From patrolling the streets of Cornwall to now writing a book, Police Sergeant Thom Racine has developed a keen understanding and appreciation of his hometown.
The 30-year veteran with the Cornwall Community Police Service made use of his outgoing nature early on in his policing career and became a well-known personality around town. In addition to his work in uniform, Sgt. Racine has also become well known for calling local hockey games, writing a weekly column in the Seaway News, and helping numerous charities, among other things.
With the launch of his new book, Constable Davey - A Future Lost, Sgt. Racine may soon become better known as an author.
In April 2010, Cornwall Police Chief Dan Parkinson asked Racine to begin digging up some local police history with the goal of creating a coffee table book highlighting the 200-plus years of policing in Cornwall.
The project took a sharp turn as Sgt. Racine began researching the story of Special Constable John Robert Davey, a Cornwall native who gave his life in the line of duty on September 6, 1892 during his first shift as a Cornwall police officer. He would become the first, and to this date, only Cornwall Police Officer to make the ultimate sacrifice.
Nobody around the police station was aware of the story of Constable Davey - his legacy had been lost in the mists of time. Before long, Davey's story captured the hearts of his fellow officers, and Racine's effort to research more details took on a life of its own.
"I knew the story of Davey and his family was something people would want to know about and the book dream was clearly off the back burner and into a full boil," recalls Sgt. Racine.
He went on to locate Davey's ancestors in the U.S., and they were in attendance in September when a new tombstone for Constable Davey was unveiled and dedicated during a touching ceremony at St. Columban's Cemetery. Later that day, the section of Ninth Street between Pitt and Sydney Streets was officially dedicated as John Robert Davey Memorial Way.
Over the next few weeks, Sgt. Racine would refine his notes to share Davey's story with others. The end result is Constable Davey - A Future Lost, a 226-page book which takes the reader through the horrific events of Sept.6, 1892, when Constable Davey's life was tragically cut short. The book tells the story of Davey's family, his three sons and three of his brothers as they make their lives in Cornwall, Buffalo and South Texas during the turn of the century (circa 1900). The book also delves into other key players on that fateful day and provides a grisly account of the killer's execution. Sgt. Racine also provides insight on the amazing coincidences that he uncovered during his research for the book.
Hard- and soft-cover versions of the book will go on sale beginning with a Lunch and Launch on Tuesday, December 6th, from 11 am to 2 pm, at Casa Paolo Restaurante on Vincent Massey Drive. Sgt. Racine will be on hand to discuss the book and sign copies. On Thursday, December 8th, Sgt. Racine will be at the Cornwall Public Library from 6:30 pm to 8 pm. The hard cover edition is available for $39.95, while the soft cover version will sell for $24.95.