The father of RCMP Const. Adrian Oliver, the 28-year-old Surrey man that was killed after his unmarked car was struck by a transport truck Nov. 23, said his son’s regimental funeral held in Langley Nov. 20 was a great comfort.
“I was warned by my RCMP liaison that it was going to be overwhelming, but actually I found that it felt that all arms were around me,” Erwin Gebhard, 55, said from his home in Williams Lake. “It was actually quite comforting.”
A truck driver and heavy equipment operator at Gibraltar Mine for the past two years, Gebhard hasn’t returned to work yet, and said through the tragedy his co-workers offered him a ton of support.
He also received an outpouring from people that he worked with at Tolko for 26 years.
“A lot of those people were touched by Adrian’s heart,” Gebhard said, adding he will miss Adrian very much.
“I will always cherish the fond memories, especially over the summers we spent together. He was an amazing person that touched a lot of hearts all over the world.”
Adrian and his twin brother Ben, also an RCMP member, were born at the Grace Hospital in Vancouver because they were premature and Kate, their mom, had been medi-vaced from Williams Lake when she went into labour.
At the age of five the twins moved away from Williams Lake to Ottawa with their mom, after the couple split up, but throughout their lives Gebhard spent time with his sons.
He’d last seen his son two months ago at their grandmother’s home in Merritt, where Gebhard was raised.
In a photograph, Gebhard is surrounded by the twins.
“My friends and I were celebrating my 50th birthday in Las Vegas and the boys showed up and surprised me,” he explained.
Adrian joined the RCMP in 2008 and was assigned to the Surrey detachment 2009. His brother, Ben, and his step-father Joe Oliver are also RCMP members.
“My heart pours out to the entire Oliver family and Adrian’s fiancé Shelagh Mitchell during this tragic and unbelievable loss. I’m thankful to the RCMP and all of the individuals who have gone above and beyond in this time,” Gebhard said. “What an amazing organization. They had liaisons helping me. I cannot say enough.”
Gebhard has a daughter, Angelina, living in Williams Lake who accompanied him to the funeral.
“She’s been with me since the beginning of all this and been great. I wouldn’t have been able to go through it without her,” he said of Angelina.