Cyclist killed in Burlington was retired Mississauga police officer
It should have been a happy day for Doug Fritz and his family. Instead, May 18 ended tragically in Burlington for the former police officer.
Fritz was cycling along North Shore Blvd. on May 18 when he was involved in a collision with a motorist. Fritz, 81, didn’t survive and a driver from Toronto has since been charged in connection with his death after a police search for several days.
In an ironic twist of fate, Fritz was on his way to Joseph Brant Hospital where doctors were going to tell him he didn’t have cancer.
“That’s the hard part going through this,” said his daughter Jackie Fritz. “He was going to get good news. It should have been a great day for all of us but it became the worst.”
Jackie said it was typical for her father to be out biking that day; he was a physical person who had only recently given up running after an ankle injury. She said he was always in great shape and worked hard at maintaining a healthy lifestyle.
She said her father had plenty to keep him busy long after retiring as a police officer. He started in Toronto and then joined Peel Regional Police where he served for 30 years rising to the rank of detective. He and his wife Faye raised Jackie and her sister Nicole in Mississauga. He and Faye lived in Burlington for the past several years.
The family said he loved doing physical work and took on many fix-it projects as well as having a passion for canoeing. Fritz also had a lifelong connection with children who not only understood his gentle wisdom but found in him a kindred spirit who liked to have fun and understood what it was like to be young.
“Kids always were drawn to him,” said Jackie. “From the old neighbourhood in Mississauga to even now in Burlington, he knew how to engage them because, I think, he was a kid at heart. Even though he was 81, his outlook and attitude were always fresh and looking forward to something. That especially was true when he was with his grandson Henry.”
Jackie said the accident has shaken their close-knit family, especially her mother who had 61 years with her dad. It was a relationship she said the couple never wanted to end.
“He adored his wife and doted on her in every way,” wrote Jackie about her father in his obituary. “As with his daughters, he made her feel protected and deeply loved and would do anything for her. They had so much fun and did pretty much everything together. So many people will miss him.”
A memorial bike ride will be held for Doug Fritz tomorrow (May 27) organized by Safe Streets Halton and Advocacy For Respect For Cyclists. Cyclists can meet up at 12:45 p.m. at the Burlington GO Station. The ride will last for approximately one hour. Members of the Fritz family will be taking part.
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A reminder that there will be a bike ride this Saturday to honour the cyclist who died in the hit and run in Burlington last week. The ride will begin at Burlington GO at 12:45 PM. Organized by @RespectTO and Safe Streets Halton. #BurlON
— Safe Streets Halton (@HaltonStreets) May 25, 2023