Lambton EMS honours fallen colleagues with county-wide trek

The Paramedic Memorial Bell under the Blue Water Bridge in Point Edward. June 2020. (Photo by Paul Van Dyk, Lambton EMS)

The pandemic hasn’t stopped a group of Lambton County EMS workers from remembering those who have died in the line of duty.

The annual Ontario Paramedic Ride biked through Lambton County this week, making stops at various local landmarks and ambulance stations.

EMS Operation Supervisor Paul Van Dyk said the Paramedic Memorial Bell was rung at the Forest ambulance station Wednesday, to recognize the names of more than 50 fallen paramedics, including one with ties to Lambton County.

“Paul Patterson was a paramedic employed by Lambton County and he was killed in the line of duty more than 13 years ago when his SUV rolled when responding to a call in Chatham-Kent.”

Van Dyk said Patterson’s family was on hand for Wednesday’s service, and at a similar service in Strathroy Thursday, the area where Patterson is buried.

Van Dyk said the initiative started back in 2013 to have a memorial created in Ottawa where the names will be established on a permanent site.

“There’s a group of a few thousand cyclists, paramedics, that would ride from Toronto to Ottawa, but with the latest COVID stuff, they’ve taken the initiative where just small groups of cyclists, paramedics from each county, have kind of handed it off to one another.”

Van Dyk said a group of about five Lambton EMS workers biked from Watford to Strathroy before completing the handoff with London-Middlesex EMS.

Great work by Lori Vermeersch and Kelly Sanderson-Lumley in putting together this fantastic video, covering our two days with the Paramedic Memorial Bell at Lambton EMS!

Posted by Dan Griffiths on Thursday, June 18, 2020