100 Mile House is home to a proud mom.
John Langford, born and raised in 100 Mile, was awarded an Order of Merit in the Police Forces at the end of January, which recognizes exceptional service or performance of duty over an extended period. He took his family (including his mom, Beth Langford, from 100 Mile) to Rideau Hall in Ottawa where he received the award from Governor General Julie Payette.
“It was humbling for sure. Policing is something that I wanted to do since I was a kid so it was kind of surreal being there. Just kinda putting everything that I’ve done over the last 20-some odd years, all of it kind of coming together. At that point, it was pretty surreal.”
Langford’s first day with police was at age five in 100 Mile House after winning a contest when he was a kid.
Langford graduated from Peter Skene Ogden Secondary School in 1989 and spent seven years in the military before joining the Calgary Police service where he’s been since 1998.
“I have worked for many years on the street, investigative roles, surveillance units, and an Intelligence Unit where we focused on counter-terrorism and extremism. I am currently a Detective and I teach police recruits in our academy.”
Langford also received a life-saving award in 2008, deployed in Afghanistan for a year as a police officer (as a mentor and advisor to the Afghan National Police in the area of Human Trafficking and Human Smuggling), deployed to the Ukraine in 2015, 2016 and 2017 to teach the Ukraine Patrol Police and has been working with homeless veterans for more than 10 years. Furthermore, he’s played an important role with Special Olympics Afghanistan.
Langford says he didn’t think he’d ever be rewarded for basically doing his job.
“All my partners that I’ve worked with and everybody else, we all put on a uniform and do it every day and then all of a sudden you’re getting recognized at a fairly high level.”
Since he’s with Calgary police, as opposed to RCMP, he says it’s not that likely that he’ll ever end up working for 100 Mile RCMP but when the fires started in 2017 he was here visiting family.
“We came back to Calgary and I put forth a proposal, because there’s a couple of other police officers here with Calgary police that are from 100 Mile House, and what I wanted to do was see if we could grab a couple of trucks, Calgary police trucks, and go out there and help out. So if we talk about would I come back, yeah absolutely and it’s actually something I tried to do.”
Langford’s dad passed away due to Parkinson’s just days before Langford received the official word he would receive the award though he says his mom had told him earlier that they had heard it would happen.
“It would have been nice to have him there as well, but I’m happy he knew about it.”
Langford says he’s grateful for his family supporting him every step of the way.