FIT FOR A QUEEN

Cape Bre­ton sol­dier has guarded roy­alty at Wind­sor Cas­tle.

Cape Breton Post - - FRONT PAGE - BY CAPE BRE­TON POST STAFF news@cb­post.com

When Mor­gan Jar­dine joined the Royal Cana­dian Reg­i­ment as an in­fantry sol­dier four years ago, he never imag­ined he’d ac­tu­ally guard roy­alty.

“Oh no, not at all — this is a mas­sive sur­prise to me,” said the 22-year-old from Florence, who as a pri­vate in the Royal Cana­dian Reg­i­ment re­cently spent a week watch­ing over the Queen of Eng­land at Wind­sor Cas­tle.

“I couldn’t be hap­pier.” While she lives and works out of Buck­ing­ham Palace, Queen Eliz­a­beth II and her hus­band Prince Philip spend most week­ends at the royal res­i­dence in the Ber­skshire coun­try­side out­side Lon­don.

Jar­dine, who was out­fit­ted in the dis­tinc­tive pith-style Wolse­ley hel­met and scar­let pug­ga­ree of the Royal Cana­dian Reg­i­ment full-dress uni­form, never got to meet any of the Royal Fam­ily while on duty.

“We’d see them walk by and drive by, stuff like that. When you’re on guard you have to stand there, look for­ward and show dis­ci­pline,” he said, adding there was still a spe­cial feel­ing be­ing in the pres­ence of roy­alty.

“You feel it in your heart, that’s for sure.”

His mother Michelle Jar­dine said the whole fam­ily, which in­cludes hus­band Keith Jar­dine and daugh­ters Cassie and Madi­son, is proud of Mor­gan’s ac­com­plish­ments. In fact, she and her mother Carolyn Barry flew to Lon­don Thurs­day to visit Mor­gan.

“We’re over-the-moon proud,” she said. “It’s an amaz­ing ex­pe­ri­ence for a 22-yearold boy from Florence to be guard­ing the Queen. It’s pretty cool.”

Jar­dine, who is based in Gage­town, N.B., is one of more than 120 mem­bers of the Royal Cana­dian Reg­i­ment and the Royal Cana­dian Ar­tillery Band Pub­lic in Eng­land from Oct. 21Nov. 22 as part of a pub­lic du­ties con­tin­gent.

He is cur­rently sta­tioned at Cavalry Bar­racks, a British Army in­stal­la­tion lo­cated north of Houn­slow Heath west of Lon­don.

To­day, he’ll be march­ing with his reg­i­ment in the Lord Mayor’s Show, an elab­o­rate pa­rade fea­tur­ing dancers, horses and mil­i­tary march­ing bands that is one of the most pop­u­lar and en­dur­ing an­nual events in Lon­don.

On Sun­day, he’ll be at Brook­wood Mil­i­tary Ceme­tery — where Cana­dian ca­su­al­ties from the First World War and the Sec­ond World War are buried — for a Re­mem­brance Day ser­vice.

Af­ter that he hopes to have a chance to ex­plore more of the coun­try be­fore fly­ing home to Canada on Nov. 17.

“It’s beau­ti­ful over here. It’s just so old and there’s just so much to see,” he said. “It’s re­ally hard to take it all in be­cause so much has hap­pened through­out the years — hun­dreds and hun­dreds of years of his­tory is in this place.”

CON­TRIB­UTED/CPL. JAY EKIN

Pte. Mor­gan Jar­dine stands at at­ten­tion out­side the guard room at Wind­sor Cas­tle in Berk­shire, Eng­land, on Oct. 21. The Florence na­tive is part of a con­tin­gent of Cana­dian sol­diers that re­cently guarded the Royal Fam­ily.

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