Big performance by small corps
Great Eastern sea cadets hold ceremonial review in Dildo
They are small in numbers, but sea cadets with the 209 Great Eastern corps in Dildo put on a big performance during their annual ceremonial review at Woodland Elementary on June 5.
Despite having only 18 cadets on parade, the corps wowed its inspecting officer with an impressive display of music, marching and discipline.
“ You did a fantastic job,” said Major Paul M. Westcott, commanding officer of the 3038 army cadet corps in Renews.
Some of the same faces took to the parade for the band, drill and honour guard demonstrations, illustrating the capabilities and commitment of the cadets. In larger cadets groups, each demonstration would usually feature different cadets.
“ Your turnout and dress was exceptional. Your behaviour on parade was exceptional,” Westcott added. “ Your numbers are down, but you have proved you do not need big numbers to be big.”
It was a big day for Master Seaman Steven Day-Reid of Old Shop, who was named cadet-of-the-year. The 14-year-old took the prestigious honour after just three years in the cadet movement.
“I like all the opportunities it gives and the fun stuff you do,” DayReid said of his experience in cadets.
Day-Reid plans to spend much of his summer in Gagetown, N.B., where he will be employed as an instructor in the air rifle marksmanship course.
The other big award of the day went to Chief Petty Officer II Katherine Dobbin, who took home the Royal Canadian Legion Medal of Excellence.
The ceremonial review included a challenge from Westcott for cadets to encourage their friends to join the national youth organization, which has seen a sharp decline in numbers in recent years.
“ The best recruiters we have are cadets on parade,” said Westcott.
Why are so few young people joining cadets? Day-Reid said there’s a misconception that cadets is just about drill and marching.
“I tell them about the sailing, the camps and all that fun stuff,” said Day-Reid.
But in an age of widespread social media and various other distractions and opportunities, most young people are seemingly uninterested in what the cadet movement has to offer. There’s a movement underway to make the program more attractive to young people.
Day-Reid believes the solution is a very basic one: “ We just have to get out there and talk about it. It’s very rewarding and we have to let more people know about it.”
One of the highlights of the June 5 ceremonial review of the 209 Great Eastern sea cadets in Dildo was the band demonstration. Shown here on the drums are, from left, Christian Legge, Vanessa Newhook, Taylor Piercey and Kayla Crocker.
The Legion Medal of Excellence was awarded to Katherine Dobbin during the June 5 ceremonial review of the 209 Great Eastern sea cadets in Dildo.
Master Seaman Steven Day-Reid of Old Shop was named cadet-of-the-year June 5 at the annual ceremonial review of the 209 Great Eastern sea cadet in Dildo.