'Big heart': Community pays tribute to top Miriam Vale cop
THE community has paid tribute to Miriam Vale police officer Owen Harms, who died yesterday.
Sergeant Harms had been stationed in Miriam Vale for the past 20 years.
True Blue Line - an organisation that posts news stories and information about emergency services, with a focus on Australia, Canada, New Zealand, United Kingdom, and the United States, posted a tribute on Facebook today.
"Sergeant Owen Harms, with a big heart and full of compassion for everyone, was everyone's friend and the Officer in Charge at Miriam Vale Police in Gladstone Police District, Queensland. Highly respected and much loved by many, he dedicated over 30 years of his life to protect, serve and improve the community he cherished so much," the post reads.
There were no suspicious circumstances around his death, and it came 36 days after he had admitted drink-driving in the Gladstone Magistrates Court.
He was a decorated officer.
"In addition to Australia Police Medal and National Medal, Sergeant Owen Harms received a Certificate of Merit from The Royal Humane Society of Australasia. Described as a true blue Aussie with a heart of gold, 'Owey' was also presented with an award and recognition for his diligence, ethical conduct and commitment to his community,'' the True Blue post said.
"His passing is a devastating loss to his family, friends, the community and country he proudly served. We all feel intensely desolated by the sting of this bitter grief.''
Others joined the tributes.
"You were there for every one of us... your door was always open for us to pop in and have a cuppa and chat... you never said a bad word about anyone! You knew how to make us laugh... you always gave a hug just when it was needed... you were so dearly loved by your beautiful family and the community in which you so proudly served!" - C.S.
"Your community is broken and lost tonight, this just doesn't seem real. You were one of the best Owey. The support you've shown not only our family but your community over the years will never be forgotten. Our thoughts and prayers are with your family tonight RIP Harmsey" - A.H.
"Step forward now, policeman,
"You've borne your burdens well.
"Come walk a beat on Heaven's streets,
"You've done your time in hell.
"Fallen in the line of duty. Gone, but never forgotten and forever in our hearts."
The Miriam Vale Rodeo Association said he was a true hero to all that knew him.
"MV Rodeo Association wishes to extend our heartfelt condolences to Owen's beloved family and friends during this devastating time. Our thoughts and prayers are with you all," they posted.
"Owey, you will be sorely missed mate!"
Gladstone Region Mayor Matt Burnett took to Facebook to post his own tribute.
"Terrible sad day for the Gladstone Region as we mourn the loss of Sergeant Owen Timothy Harms," he wrote.
"No words can describe how great a man he was and how devastating this news is. Rest in peace my friend."
The Miriam Vale Magpies Rugby League Club remembered Sgt Harms on Facebook.
"Owen, our community pillar, our hero, our mate!," the post reads.
"Forever etched in our hearts and minds are the memories of this tremendous man! May you rest in eternal peace Owey. We love you and will miss you terribly.
"On behalf of the Maggies family we are all holding Lyn, Brendon and Bree very close in our hearts and thoughts at this devastating time. May you draw strength and courage from the outpouring of love and support."
- If you need help phone Lifeline on 13 11 14.