Funeral held for Canadian soldier killed in Bulgarian skydiving exercise

Military police are investigating the circumstances surrounding the death of Bombardier Patrick Labrie

Family, friends and military brass attended a military funeral in Gatineau, Que., on Saturday for a Canadian soldier who died in a parachute training exercise in Bulgaria.

Bombardier Patrick Labrie, a six-year veteran of the Canadian Forces based out of CFB Petawawa, died from injuries sustained while parachuting near the southern Bulgarian village of Cheshnegirovo last month.

Military police are investigating the circumstances surrounding the death of Labrie, 28, who was originally from Buckingham, Que., a small town within Gatineau’s eastern limits.

To the blare of a lone bagpipe, a military vehicle bore the casket, draped in a Canadian flag, from a local legion branch in Buckingham to the St. Gregory of Nazianze parish in a military procession Saturday morning.

READ MORE: Canadian soldier’s remains to return to Canada after death in parachute exercise

“The church is literally standing-room only,” said spokeswoman Capt. Karyn Mazurek in a phone interview. “It’s a very sad occasion, a very solemn occasion.”

Labrie’s parents, sister and fiancee were among those in attendance, alongside division commander Brig.-Gen. Conrad Mialkowski, Mazurek said.

“I know everybody that’s here is cherishing the memories they have of Patrick, from his military colleagues to his brothers in arms as well as his family and his friends and the community,” she said.

Pallbearers carried the casket to a hearse early Saturday afternoon, accompanied by an honour guard and a ceremonial gun salute.

Officials say Labrie was performing a low-altitude night jump from a Canadian military aircraft during a multinational training exercise on June 17.

“The military investigation does remain ongoing, and details about that won’t be available for probably some time,” Mazurek said.

The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Quesnel gold pan relocation prompts rally, response from mayor

“At its current location, it doesn’t let us tell our story”

Status of C&C Wood Products focus of discussion at Quesnel city council meeting

Mayor Bob Simpson said he hopes a formal statement can be issued soon surrounding its future

Cariboo ranchers, lodge operators say Indigenous land title shuts them out

Tsilhqot’in jurisdiction affects grazing, access to private property

Flood watches issued for Quesnel, Horsefly Rivers

Flows rising in response to snowmelt and rainfall, continued rises expected

RCMP urge Williams Lake residents to be cautious as suspect remains on the loose

Man seen speeding on Highway 97 fled from police after colliding with RCMP vehicle

If Trudeau won’t stand up to Trump, how will regular people: Singh

Trudeau did not directly answer a question about Trump’s actions amid protests

VIDEO: Internal investigation into aggressive arrest by Kelowna Mountie

A video allegedly shows a Kelowna Mountie striking a man several times

22 new COVID-19 test-positives, one death following days of low case counts in B.C.

Health officials urged British Columbians to ‘stand together while staying apart’

John Horgan says COVID-19 restrictions won’t be eased regionally

B.C. Liberals urge ‘tailored’ response based on infections

Feds get failing grade for lack of action plan on anniversary of MMIWG report

‘Instead of a National Action Plan, we have been left with a Lack-of-Action Plan’

As two B.C. offices see outbreaks, Dr. Henry warns tests don’t replace other measures

Physical distancing, PPE and sanitizing remain key to reduce COVID-19 spread

Greater Victoria drive-thru window smashed after man receives burger without mustard

Greater Victoria Wendy’s staff call police after man allegedly rips Plexiglas barrier off window

Murder charge upgraded in George Floyd case, 3 other cops charged

Floyd’s family and protesters have repeatedly called for criminal charges against all four officers

Young killer whale untangles itself from trap line off Nanaimo shore

DFO marine mammal rescue unit was en route as whale broke free from prawn trap line

Most Read