Funeral service held for York police constable killed in head-on crash

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York police say Const. Travis Gillespie, 38, was sworn in as an officer in 2020, and is survived by his parents, loved ones and colleagues. His funeral takes place Thursday. (York Regional Police - image credit)
York police say Const. Travis Gillespie, 38, was sworn in as an officer in 2020, and is survived by his parents, loved ones and colleagues. His funeral takes place Thursday. (York Regional Police - image credit)

The funeral service for a police officer who was killed in a head-on crash on his way to work in Markham last week was held today, York Regional Police say.

Const. Travis Gillespie, 38, was pronounced dead at the scene of the collision in the area of Major Mackenzie Drive East and Warden Avenue on Sept. 14. Police say a Porsche Cayenne SUV and a white Honda Accord, driven by Gillespie, collided around 6 a.m.

The driver of the Porsche, Haoju Zhou, 23, from Markham, was taken to hospital. He was later charged with impaired driving causing death, and dangerous driving causing death.

Hugo Levesque/CBC
Hugo Levesque/CBC

The funeral service began at 1:30 p.m.at the Chapel Ridge Funeral Home and Cremation Centre at 8911 Woodbine Ave. in Markham.

Police say the visitation and funeral are private and members of the public or media will not be permitted to attend.

A private interment will follow the funeral.

 

York police say Gillespie was sworn in as an officer in 2020, and is survived by his parents, loved ones and colleagues.

Before becoming a police officer, Gillespie worked as a special constable with Metrolinx and volunteered with Primal Mixed Martial Arts Academy, police say.

Hugo Levesque/CBC
Hugo Levesque/CBC

At a memorial run held Thursday morning, York police Deputy Chief Cecile Hammond said she will remember Gillespie as a great leader. She said her heart breaks for his loved ones.

"Today I'm thinking about his family, his friends and his colleagues … they're the ones who are really hurting greatly and for these runners, I know that's what they're feeling," she said.