Ontario Newsroom

Read More About Constable John Kusznier

Archived Backgrounder

Read More About Constable John Kusznier

Bridge Dedicated To Fallen Thunder Bay Police Officer

Ministry of the Solicitor General

On January 15, 1978, Thunder Bay Police Service Constable John S. Kusznier died in the line of duty while responding to a disturbance in a local nightclub parking lot. He encountered two men armed with handguns; an exchange of gunfire took place and Constable Kusznier suffered a fatal gunshot wound.

On January 15, 1978, Thunder Bay Police Service Constable John S. Kusznier died in the line of duty while responding to a disturbance in a local nightclub parking lot. He encountered two men armed with handguns; an exchange of gunfire took place and Constable Kusznier suffered a fatal gunshot wound.

Kusznier was born in Port Arthur on November 29, 1940, and attended St. James Public School and Lakeview High School in Port Arthur. He joined the former Port Arthur police force on July 11, 1966, and graduated from the Ontario Police College in 1970. That same year, he became part of the Thunder Bay Police Service when the Port Arthur and Fort William police forces amalgamated.

Prior to becoming a police officer, Kusznier worked for Coca-Cola, Prudential Insurance, Singer Sewing Machines and with his father at the family concrete business.

Kusznier played high school football and was a member of the local Ukrainian dance group, where he met his future wife Olga. He enjoyed camping and creek fishing. Olga Kusznier is still involved with the local Ukrainian community and has served as president of the Provost Society.

Kusznier coached outdoor peewee hockey for his sons, Stephen, Mark and Barry, at Fitzgerald rink, which was later renamed in his honour. He served as president of the Hill City Kinsmen Club and worked to bring the March of Dimes facility to the city.

Kusznier and Olga had three sons. Stephen, 45, is a transit operator with the City of Thunder Bay and is married to Laureen. They have two daughters -- Shannon and Stephanie.  Mark, 42, is an employee of the Thunder Bay Regional Health Science Centre in the medical field. He and wife Melissa have two children -- Max and Molly. Barry, 39, and daughters Cheyanne and Destiny, also reside in Thunder Bay.

The Highway Memorial for Fallen Police Officers Act, 2002

Community Safety and Correctional Services Minister Rick Bartolucci introduced the bill while he served in opposition in the Ontario legislature. The legislation recognizes that the people of Ontario are forever grateful to the dedicated police officers who have courageously and unselfishly given their lives in the line of duty. The bill enables the legislative assembly by resolution, to name bridges and other structures on the King's Highway in memory of police officers who have died in the line of duty.

Media Contacts

Share