Vancouver police Sgt. Joe Chu, who is fluent in Mandarin, is being credited with helping calm down the parents of a kidnapped student from China.
On Thursday, the 18-year-old University of British Columbia student was freed by Vancouver police after spending three days in captivity. More than 100 officers and civilians assisted in the rescue. Four men have been arrested and are facing kidnapping charges.
Insp. Les Yeo, who led the rescue of Graham McMynn in 2004 and was the team commander again, praised Chu in a release.
“Imagine you are these parents, living thousands of miles away from their child, and you don’t speak the language,” Yeo said. “Who are you going to call?”
The student was allegedly taken from his home in the west end on Feb. 15. His parents were contacted in China and a ransom demand was made through a third party in Canada.
It was Chu who made the call with the good news.
“It was an incredible moment to say to the parents, ‘We have your son,’” Chu said.