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Charity calendar features Sooke Mounties with their pets

Project a major fundraiser for animal foundation
Sooke RCMP Cpl. Erin Mcleod poses with her four-year-old French bulldog Mackie Boy. “(I’m) very grateful to help and happy that Mackie got his time in the spotlight,” McLeod said. (Photo by Bill Cubitt)

Two Sooke RCMP officers are striking a pose with their furry friends in the Balfour’s Friends Foundation fundraiser, “Officers on Pawtrol 2024 Calendar.”

Cpl. Erin McLeod appears with her four-year-old French bulldog Mackie Boy for November, while Const. Mary-Ellen Somerville and her husband, West Shore RCMP Const. Darren Sommerville appears in March with Cocoa.

“(I’m) very grateful to help and happy that Mackie got his time in the spotlight,” said McLeod.

Both Somerville and McLeod said they participated because Balfour’s Friends Foundation assists low-income families whose pets require urgent veterinary care.

“Cocoa was a good girl and enjoyed the photoshoot,” Sommerville said.

Sooke RCMP detachment commander Staff Sgt. Greg Willcocks said local Mounties all have a soft spot for animals.

“Often, when members of the public visit the detachment they will see members and employees pets at work with them. In the past, members have even adopted animals that are in neglected homes,” he said.

The calendar includes police officers from the Victoria, Saanich and Central Saanich police departments and the West Shore, Sidney/North Saanich, Sooke and Oceanside RCMP detachments. In addition to the canine companions, a cat and a pony are featured.

BFF also produces a “Firefighters & Friends” calendar. Both are available for purchase online at

The foundation is named in memory of Staff Sgt. Balfour Munkley, an animal lover who served with the B.C. Provincial Police and the RCMP.

Since 2012, BFF has raised and distributed hundreds of thousands of dollars across Vancouver Island to help low-income individuals such as seniors, persons with disabilities and single parents pay for essential veterinary care.

BFF is a volunteer-based registered charity that depends on donations, grants, and fundraising.

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