Charles W. Wright (1925-2016)
Founder IPA Canada
Our founder, Reverend Charles Wright, was born July, 18th, 1925 at Southend-on-Sea, Essex, United Kingdom. Through 1943 – 1947 he served in both the Royal Navy and the Royal Air Force as an Air Gunner in 170th Squadron, as well as an RAF Police Officer.
After his military service he became a civilian police officer with the Southend-on-Sea, County Borough Police, Essex from 1948 – 1951.
In 1951 he immigrated to Canada and joined the London City Police force in London, Ontario. Sometime after he learned of the International Police Association (IPA), a police friendship and fraternal organization founded in 1950 by Arthur Troop, a Lincolnshire, England police sergeant. At the time the IPA had only extended as far as Europe so in 1958 Charles joined the French Section as an associate member.
In 1959 he made written inquires to Arthur Troop with the goal of establishing an IPA Section in Canada. Charles put in countless hours recruiting and fashioning an organizational framework for a fledgling section.
On December 1, 1960 at the Auxiliary Police Headquarters in the City of London Ontario the inaugural meeting of the Canadian Section of the IPA took place. All membership prerequisites were in position and the International body of the IPA was petitioned for full membership.
On 16th of March 1961 IPA Canada was given interim Section status at a provisional meeting in Paris, France. Later that year he attended the World Congress with Lloyd McClure, 1st Vice President of IPA Canada to receive the official accreditation.
In 1962 an IPA Section was created in the United States. Charles played an integral part in the formation together with Americans Harold Litwin and Leland Stipes.
Over the following 55 years Charles served IPA Canada in many and varying positions, always with wisdom and dedication.
After his retirement in 1983, Charles worked in the London Courts, and later became an ordained Anglican Minister and Padre of 427 (London) Wing. He was a member of the Lambeth Legion, and a Freemason with Centennial Lodge, and Moffat Lodge.
At a joint USA/Canada National Annual General Meeting in Seattle, Washington occurring in 2010, a motion was put forward by then IPA Canada President Larry Sheppard to recognize and honour Charles Wright for his many years of hard work and valued contributions to IPA Canada by observing March 16 as Founder’s Day. The motion was passed and every March 16th we celebrate IPA Canada Founder’s Day in honour of Charles.
Our Founder passed away peacefully at London, Ontario’s Victoria Hospital on Wednesday, January 20, 2016, in his 91st year. He was the cherished husband of Sheila Cameron, and the late Dorothy Wright; and the beloved father of Graham (Pennie) and David.