Where the proud pa­rade

295 Bac­calieu puts off a suc­ces­ful an­nual cer­e­mo­nial re­view

The Compass - - COMPASS - BY NICHOLAS MERCER THE COM­PASS nmercer@cb­n­com­pass.ca

The red sign on the far wall of the gym­na­sium at Bac­calieu Col­le­giate in Old Per­li­can reads ‘where the proud pa­rade.’

When it comes to the young men and women of the 295 Bac­calieu Sea Cadet Corps the slo­gan could not hold a greater mean­ing.

The corps held its 28th an­nual cer­e­mo­nial re­view on April 28.

The 80 cadets marched around the gym­na­sium, the band belted out songs and the drill team put on a first-class dis­play of their tal­ents for a packed house at Bac­calieu Col­le­giate.

Look­ing at their faces, one could see the sense of pride splashed all over their faces. But, the pride did not stop with the cadets.

For each step pounded into the hard rub­ber floor, it was their mothers, fa­thers, grand­moth­ers, grand­fa­thers, sis­ters and broth­ers who beamed with pride as a full year of prepa­ra­tion had cul­mi­nated in a near-flaw­less per­for­mance.

Af­ter each drill, the cadets were met with rau­cous ap­plause from the large group of on­look­ers.

“This sense of com­mu­nity is just amaz­ing,” said re­view­ing of­fi­cer Lt.-Cmdr. Robert Houle. “This is what al­lows for some­thing like this to be pos­si­ble.”

Lt.-Cmdr. Houle is the ex­ec­u­tive of­fi­cer with the re­gional cadet sup­port unit for the At­lantic prov­inces. He said he was im­pressed by the work he had just seen.

On nu­mer­ous oc­ca­sions, Houle could be seen lean­ing to his right and whis­per­ing his praises to the unit’s com­mand­ing of­fi­cer, Lt.Cmdr. Clif­ford Mor­gan.

“You don’t know how in­cred­i­bly proud I am to have made the call to come see this for my­self,” said Houle. “I wouldn’t be­lieve it, if I didn’t see it.”

He again com­mented on the sup­port the com­mu­nity showed the corps.

“I can’t imag­ine how proud your par­ents, fam­ily and friends are,” said Houle. “It’s well de­served.”

Houle was in awe of the abil­ity each cadet showed while on pa­rade. Ad­mit­ting that he did not have much skill when it came to parad­ing, Houle said it would take him 10 years just to “mas­ter one piece of this, let alone, do it in the dark.”

Com­man­der’s words

Lt.-Cmdr. Mor­gan had sim­i­lar words to Houle. He praised the work done by his cadets, thank­ing each of them for the amount of work they put in each week.

“Most of you know what is ex­pected of you once you com­mit to be­ing a cadet, and you take your role very se­ri­ously,” said Mor­gan.

Mor­gan is not alone in mak­ing sure 295 Bac­calieu runs like a well-oiled ma­chine. He has sup­port staff that he calls an “ex­cel­lent group” and are “very ded­i­cated to work­ing with the corps.”

“This has been a very com­fort­able year for me as CO due to the ded­i­ca­tion and com­mit­ment of th­ese peo­ple,” he said.

Mor­gan also paid no­tice to the work done by the Bay de Verde branch of the Navy League.

“This group of vol­un­teers are what keeps this corps as ac­tive as it is,” he said.

Be­hind ev­ery good group of cadets are a good group of par­ents, who make sure their son or daugh­ter at­tend ev­ery meet­ing and event.

“Parental and com­mu­nity sup­port for this corps is un­be­liev­able, to say the least,” said Mor­gan.

Mor­gan made note of the Bac­calieu Lion’s Club, who do­nated the meals for the ban­quet later in the evening.

Lord Strat­a­cona

Chief Petty Of­fi­cer I Chan­tae Gar­land picked up the cov­eted Lord Strath­cona medal. It is the high­est award that can be be­stowed upon a Cana­dian cadet in recog­ni­tion of ex­em­plary per­for­mance in phys­i­cal and mil­i­tary train­ing.

Gar­land is fol­low­ing in the foot­steps of her older sis­ter Michaela, who re­ceived the award two years prior.

“It’s pretty ex­cit­ing that I got it,” said Gar­land.

Gar­land is a Level III stu­dent at Bac­calieu Col­le­giate and will be at­tend­ing Me­mo­rial Univer­sity in the fall, where she will be start­ing work on a de­gree in bio­chemisty.

She said she was proud of the work put in by her fel­low cadets.

“We put a lot of work into this pre­sen­ta­tion and we are all so proud of the turnout. It’s ex­cit­ing,” said Gar­land.

LEFT: Able Sea­man Matthew Kelly plays the snare drum.

Lt.-Cmdr. Robert Houle (right), ac­com­pa­nied by 295 Bac­calieu Chief Petty Of­fi­cer I Chan­tae Gar­land (cen­tre), be­gins his in­spec­tion of the sea cadet corps at Bac­calieu Col­le­giate in Old Per­li­can on April 28. Also in the photo is Petty Of­fi­cer I Kai­ley Noo­nan.

The 295 Bac­calieu se­nior drill team shows off its moves dur­ing the ACR.

Petty Of­fi­cer II An­toni Power (right) plays a trib­ute to coun­try mu­sic le­gend Ge­orge Jones, who passed away on April 26. He was ac­com­pa­neyd by Aaron Kelly, a for­mer Chief Petty Of­fi­cer I with 295 Bac­calieu. They played the well-known clas­sic “Choices.”

Pho­tos by Nicholas Mercer/the Com­pass

Chief Petty Of­fi­cer I Chan­tae Gar­land (left) re­ceives the Lord Strath­cona medal from Lt.-Cmdr. Robert Houle.

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