Lo­cal cadets meet real hero over­seas

Cape Breton Post - - Op-ed -

Hav­ing recently re­turned from a visit to Juno Beach, Beau­mont Hamel and Vimy Ridge with the 1917 Vimy Ridge Army Cadets and the 602 McCurdy Air Cadets (both from Florence), I would like to thank Cap­tain Carl­ton Ol­son and his group who shep­herded 30 peo­ple through the crowded streets and sub­ways of both Lon­don and Paris.

It was no easy job keep­ing track of ev­ery­body and do­ing it well. The cadets dis­played ex­em­plary be­haviour and are a credit to their train­ers. Three of our cadets (Nathan Hastie, Leah Boudreau and Lo­gan Camp­bell) were in­ter­viewed on TV while at­tend­ing the cel­e­bra­tions at Vimy Ridge. Two of our paramedics (Ni­cole Jes­some and Greg Mur­phy Jr.) were able to use their ex­per­tise to help a dis­tressed Lon­doner on the sub­way.

There were many celebri­ties that at­tended the cel­e­bra­tion of Vimy Ridge 100 years. There was one, how­ever, who stood out above all oth­ers. It was none other than for­mer gen­eral (now sen­a­tor) Romeo D’Al­laire. He was in a car that pulled up and parked next to our group as we waited to go through se­cu­rity for the event. The cadets rec­og­nized him im­me­di­ately when he stepped out of the car. One cadet asked if she could take a pic­ture with him. He gladly obliged and in­vited ev­ery­one into the pic­ture as well.

Here is a man who knows the hor­rors of war. He pleaded with the United Na­tions to in­ter­vene and send help to stop the killing and now suf­fers the un­told men­tal agony af­ter what hap­pened in Rwanda. This man took the time to speak briefly to some Cape Bre­ton teenagers who will un­doubt­edly re­mem­ber him for the rest of their lives. D’Al­laire is a true Cana­dian hero and our cadets were for­tu­nate to have met him. Hilda Trem­blett Big Bras d’Or

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