Army strong in Island Cove
2797 cadet corps performs well during annual ceremonial review
The band of the 2797 army cadet corps in Upper Island Cove is something to behold.
At the corps 47th annual ceremonial review at St. Peter’s Elementary in Upper Island Cove on May 11, the band moved with laser-like precision.
Every turn was on time, and every note was hit. Each member moved as one cohesive unit, making sure each instrument was in time with the other.
The band seamlessly moved between “The Saints Come Marching In,” “God Save the Queen” and the national anthem.
In an impressive display of snare drumming and glockenspieling, Master Cpl. Kyle Mercer and Warrant Offi- cer Jo-Lee Sparkes rattled off a version of the surf rock tune “Wipe Out.”
When they were finished, the some 50 people in attendance rose to their feet and applauded the effort.
The band was one the aspects highlighted by reviewing officer Maj. John Mutrey.
“I want to say that the band rocks,” he said.
The Carbonear native said he was honoured to be at the school and act as the reviewing officer for the 2797 corps.
Mutrey started by complementing the cadets on their dress.
“It is very evident that you take great pride in your uniforms and in this organization,” he said.
Then, Mutrey went into complementing the cadets on all aspects of the review.
From their rifle drill to a demonstration of physical training, Mutrey was impressed by it all.
“The drill was fantastic, the weapons handling was superb and I was very pleased to see the safety aspects come into play as well,” he said.
The young men and women who take part in cadets are some of the most dedicated individuals in the community. They spend countless hours volunteering their time with various causes at any time during the year.
“Cadets, thank you for all of your hard work in supporting your community,” said Mutrey. “It’s great to see young cadets demonstrating good citizenship, discipline, leadership and a sense of purpose in your daily activities.
“That’s great to see. There are far too many kids now that are playing Nintendo or Xbox or Playstations far too often.”
Commanding officer Capt. Cindy Dobbin also had high praise for the work her cadets did at the review.
“You cadets did a fabulous job. You can pat yourselves on the shoulder for that because it was awesome,” she said. “This has been a very busy year for 2792, and it certainly wouldn’t be possible without our cadets.”
Of course, there is another side of having a dedicated cadet. It is having dedicated parents.
“Keeping your young men and women, your sons and your daughters coming back to us every single week, supporting them and telling them and showing them how important it is to be a part of something so great,” said Dobbin.
This year’s recipient of the Lord Strathcona Trust Medal for the 2797 army cadet corps was Warrant Officer Jo-Lee Sparkes.
The medal is presented to the cadet who shows exemplary performance in physical and military training.
The Level II student at Ascension Collegiate had no idea she would be receiving the highly coveted award.
“It is probably my highest accomplishment in cadets since I’ve been here. It’s amazing,” said Sparkes.