You might not be able to use it in a vending machine, but for auxiliary constable Trevor Absolon a newly minted commemorative coin is priceless.
Absolon’s nationally winning coin design was unveiled at the West Shore RCMP detachment on last Thursday.
Absolon was presented with the first minted coin, numbered ‘001’ and honoured during a ceremony featuring RCMP brass, Absolon’s fellow auxiliary constables and local dignitaries.
The non-circulation commemorative coin features a pair of male and female auxiliary constables flanked by officers performing a variety of duties they commonly take on in their role. One is directing traffic, another is helping out a person in a wheelchair, while another is patrolling the community on a bicycle, a personal favourite task for Absolon.
“The auxiliary program’s been a great program,” Absolon said. “The different things I’ve seen and done, the people I’ve met, the new experiences. … I can’t think of anything quite as exciting and fulfilling.”
Absolon has been with the auxiliary force for two years and has a day job working as a bylaw enforcement officer with the Songhees First Nation. With some graphic art experience, Absolon just thought he’d try his hand at the contest, with no serious ambitions to win.
“I thought ‘I like doing artistic things, I’ve got some skills, I’ll just try,’” Absolon said. “It was fun, it was a good project to work on and it’s a nice piece to keep. Hopefully it’ll stay around in my family and we’ll display it somewhere. It was a bit of an honour.”
The main challenge was trying to represent all the auxiliary program does in one coin, Absolon said.
“The auxiliary program is incredibly diverse, so how do you come up with one design that encompasses all the different aspects of the program?” Absolon said. “The only way to really show how diverse the program is is to show all the different activities people do and even so you couldn’t capture all of them.”