Michael B. POTVIN
Michael Bernard Potvin was born on August 4th, 1983 to his loving parents, Patricia and Mark Potvin of Osgoode. Michael grew up with a younger brother, Sean. Michael had a very happy childhood and was surrounded by the love of his family and friends. He enjoyed spending time with his grandparents and extended family and loved his family dogs, Noble, and later, Walker. From a young age, he enjoyed learning new things, exploring and nature. He was curious about animals and as a young boy wanted to one day become a Herpetologist (a scientist that studies reptiles and amphibians).
Michael went to Osgoode Township High School where he made some life long friendships, including the friendship with his best long-time friend from third grade, Shawn Anderson. He was enrolled in karate as a young man and excelled under the mentorship of a teacher and friend, Wayne Beaton. Michael received his black belt at the age of 16 and was forever shaped positively by the martial art. After high school, he attended Carleton University for a short time and was enrolled in the Biology program. During this time, Michael met Allison, his future wife, through her cousin, Meghan Brooks.
After a short time in University, Michael decided Biology wasn’t a good fit and that he wanted to become a Police Officer. Not long after this, he was enrolled in the Police Foundations program at Algonquin College in Ottawa and settled comfortably into the program. His openness with people, integrity, dedication to learning and problem solving made policing feel like a natural fit. It was also here that Michael made many new friends and another lifelong friend in Marc Blanchette. Mike began to apply to multiple policing departments within Ontario, as well as submit his application for the process to become a member with the RCMP.
In August, 2008, Michael and Allison got married and shortly after that, on November 17, 2008 (the same date as his younger brother’s birthday), Michael began his training as a cadet at the RCMP training academy, Depot, in Regina, Saskatchewan. He took pride in his learning and made quick friends with his mates in Troop 36. Michael was excited about the prospect of possibly working one day as an Officer in the Canadian North. As a young man, he was fascinated by nature and enjoyed reading stories from authors such as Jack London. He loved the outdoors and had just begun enjoying fly fishing as a hobby. A enjoyment passed on to him by his Father. He was excited after learning at the end of his training at Depot in Regina, that he and Allison would be moving to the Yukon, his first choice for a posting. On May 4th, 2009 (Allison’s Birthday), Michael graduated from Depot.
Michael loved the Yukon and enjoyed his first posting to Watson Lake. There, Michael and Allison started falling in love with the northern lifestyle and its people. Michael worked closely at first with his coach officer, learning about the intricacies of policing in a small, remote community. He enjoyed the sense of family created by working at a small detachment. The members welcomed them both with open arms and quickly become their force family. In the fall of that year, Michael was transferred to the Mayo, Yukon detachment. He transitioned quickly into the community and began making relationships with everyone that he could. Michael and Allison made many personal friendships as well. Michael especially enjoyed his role in community policing and took on a hands-on approach when representing the RCMP at the local school, J.V. Clark school. He loved interacting with the kids. Michael was like a big kid himself, he loved to laugh and have fun and was honoured when he was able to attend the Bison Hunt, a special school trip that happened annually with one of the grades. Shortly into 2010, Allison and Michael found out that they were expecting their first child in September. Michael was elated to find out he would soon be a father and helped to pick out their son’s name, Jack. Allison and Michael were able to enjoy a trip home to see family that spring, as well as a last special trip together to Hawaii.
On July 13, 2010, Michael died in a boating accident while on duty in Mayo, Yukon. Michael’s legacy lives on in his friends and family and most especially through his son, Jack. We continue to remember his hard work and dedication to policing, as well as to the communities and lives he touched personally. He is greatly missed to this day. We honour his memory and celebrate his irreplaceable spirit now and always.k here to edit.