Dave Grant (on tractor) and BCHBC Aldergrove vice-chairman Peter Thiessen were just two of the 25 volunteers who worked on the multi-use South Langley Trail. Thiessen recently passed away at his home in Summerland. (Black Press Media files)

Dave Grant (on tractor) and BCHBC Aldergrove vice-chairman Peter Thiessen were just two of the 25 volunteers who worked on the multi-use South Langley Trail. Thiessen recently passed away at his home in Summerland. (Black Press Media files)

Former Langley resident and longtime RCMP member loses cancer battle

Peter Thiessen was known as the region’s RCMP media spokesperson and an avid horseback rider

Former Langley resident and longtime RCMP member Peter Thiessen died Monday surrounded by family in Summerland due to cancer.

Thiessen spent many years as the RCMP’s media spokesperson for the Lower Mainland before his retirement in 2014. He was with the RCMP for 30 years.

Soon after moving to Summerland, he ended up having an electrical fire at his new property in 2014.

As a Langley resident Thiessen was also involved in horseback riding and was a member of the Back Country Horsemen of B.C. Aldergrove chapter which he joined in 2005. He was one of the volunteers who helped construct trails for riders and the general public in South Langley.

Married with four grown children, Thiessen was born and raised in Vancouver. He joined the RCMP in 1979 and was posted to the National Criminal Intelligence Branch in the Lower Mainland, where his work involved high profile investigations including the Clifford Olsen file.

After a few years stationed in Leduc, Alta., he returned to Lower Mainland, posted to the Port Mann Freeway Patrol. He was next posted to Langley where he worked general duty, burglary and traffic enforcement.

He became a motorcycle operator and instructor and was a member of the E Division Motorcycle Escort Team. That work brought him into contact with U.S. President Bill Clinton, Russian President Boris Yeltsin, and Queen Elizabeth.

He then moved to communications, first working in Richmond. In 2001, Thiessen was promoted to corporal. He returned to the Langley Detachment and a year later was named Lower Mainland communications officer. He was also promoted to the rank of sergeant.

– With files from the BCRCMP Facebook page

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