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PC David Rathband’s Twin Will Clock Him Off Final Shift Today

March 10, 2012

The twin of PC David Rathband will “clock” him off his final shift before a memorial service in Newcastle.

PC Rathband, 44, who was shot and blinded by Raoul Moat in 2010, was found hanged at his home in Blyth, Northumberland, on 29 February.

Hundreds are expected to attend the first of two services in honour of the traffic officer at St Nicholas Cathedral at 12:00 GMT.

Darren Rathband said the service was to “celebrate” the life of his brother.

Before the service a hearse will stop at Etal Lane police station, in Newcastle, where PC Rathband was based, and his brother will formally book him off his last shift.

PC Rathband’s widow Kath will not be attending Saturday’s service, but will be at the funeral in his native Stafford next Saturday and at a memorial service organised by Northumbria Police at the same cathedral on 19 March.

Darren Rathband, who is also a police officer and lives in Australia, organised Saturday’s service.

Humanist speaker

The cathedral said it was expecting about 800 people, with mourners also lining the streets outside.

A sound system will enable those outside the cathedral to hear the full service.

Sue Sim The Chief Constable of Northumbria Police Sue Sim said she would attend the service

The service will be conducted by the Dean of Newcastle, the Very Reverend Chris Dalliston.

He said: “The memorial service will include a tribute to David led by humanist Carly Fee, although as one would expect in an Anglican cathedral the service will include prayers that bear witness to the Christian hope.

“We hope the service will enable people of every faith and none to come together to honour David’s memory.

“This is a celebration of David’s life, his bravery and his service to the community.

“However, the cost he and others have had to pay remind us forcibly of the destructive powers at work in our society, the need for constant vigilance and the debt we owe, not only to David but to all his colleagues in the Northumbria force.

“We hope that this service will begin the process of bringing healing and reconciliation to those who have been caught up in this tragic situation.”

The Chief Constable of Northumbria, Sue Sim, who promised PC Rathband there remained a job for him with the force, said she would attend the service.

PC Rathband was shot twice by Moat while sitting unarmed in his patrol car in July 2010.

After being shot, PC Rathband set up the Blue Lamp Foundation charity which helps emergency service personnel who have been injured at work.

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