Local cadets meet real hero overseas
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