OC C Squadron’s Update – June and July 2008

By Major JL Cochrane
1 August 2008


Well, the Sqn has officially been stood up for TF 1-09 for two months. During this time we have been involved in continuous activities both to support Regimental events (Unit Change of Command, Brigade Change of Command, Spruce Meadows and The Calgary Stampede), as well as activities conducted to achieving our training aims for TF 1-09 (EX STEELE RESOLVED). This has, as it appears, been an incredibly busy period and everyone is looking forward to a well deserved period of relaxation during block leave.


The Sqn has finally had the opportunity to meet 31, our troop from the 12 RBC, during EX STEELE RESOLVE. The troop quickly meshed with the rest of the Squadron and after a few hours of sorting out various luggage challenges was fully integrated and employed with the Squadron’s main effort – maintenance. After 30 months of continuous training cycles the tanks are starting to get tired and are looking for some heavy maintenance; we started to provide that where possible. Without the exceptional efforts of the Maintainer’s under the guidance of MCpl Kierstead and Sgt Wardle the Squadron would not have achieved half of what it did in the field – both in terms of actual training and maintenance. Still at the end of the exercise the tanks were again tired and looking for some additional care. The Regiment is currently putting a plan in place to get the tanks into a position to continue with the breakneck operational tempo that we have been maintaining for some time.


I must pass along my thanks to several organizations that without which the squadron would not have been able to function. As I stated earlier, our maintenance team (augmented by HQ Squadron) did an outstanding job. The Medics that were attached to us worked tirelessly and were involved in a large number of events that added a great deal of realism to our training. The Cooks under WO St-Onge provided an exceptional number of feasts throughout the exercise. I believe that they actually increased our foot print in the field by the amount of food they fed us. Having spoken to many of the soldiers throughout the exercise they complained that the laundry service was actually shrinking their clothing, in actuality it was the increase in Body Mass Index (BMI) that we all experienced. Lastly I want to congratulate Cpl Cormier from 1 Svc Bn who actually joined us as a mentor for our Troopers who were being trained on the HLVW PLS system. He not only acted as an excellent mentor, but he also assisted the squadron with shower runs for the soldiers, lift of material, and generally fit in with the squadron from the start. For his tireless efforts, that were not required or expected, he was awarded the CO’s Coin. Again my thanks to all of you for the outstanding efforts put forth in supporting the squadron.


Before we actually deployed we had several awards and promotions that were received within the squadron. These include:


Promotions:


Promoted to MWO: MWO Stacey
Promoted to WO: Sgt Amos (1 Aug 08)
Promoted to Cpl: Cpl Hume
Promoted to Tpr (T): Tpr Underwood
Tpr Hyshka
Tpr Nolan
Tpr Bakker


Awards:


Sgt Charette was awarded his Canadian Decoration First Clasp
Cpl Bustard was awarded his Canadian Decoration
Cpl Sebo was awarded the Task Force Commander’s Commendation


Courses:


Cpl Hamilton was the top candidate on the Leopard Gunnery’s Course
Cpl Brisebois-Bergeon was the top candidate on the 25mm Turret Operators Course


Congratulations to all of you.


To everyone – have a safe and relaxing block leave and ensure you take time to wined down and spend time with family and friends before we get started on the next portion of our journey.


Perseverance