All hands on deck for 249
Brigus sea cadets demonstrate their seaworthy skills at annual inspection
Before the marching begins at All Hallows gymnasium in North River, a loud authoritative female voice charges the troops to “fall in.”
Petty Officer 1st Class Samantha Linthorne of 249 Effie M. Morrissey sea cadets of Brigus holds the position of coxswain, and energetically gives orders to the ship’s company to enter and begin the festivities.
Commands can be heard from the hallway outside the gym for the band to begin while a parade of 10 flag bearers lead the way.
Following in step are nearly a dozen cadets carrying wooden rifles, and finally, the 15-member band. Full group participation The entire 39-member unit takes part in three separate attention-grabbing demonstrations.
A dozen cadets begin the first scheduled activity, seamanship, where each cadet picks a volunteer from the audience and teaches them basic rope skills at three different stations.
Cadets accurately demonstrate their skills — creating a rope and pulley, tying a figure eight knot and tossing a rope at a target — at all three stations and their volunteer repeats the activity.
Inspecting officer, Lt.-Cmdr. Shannon Lewis-Simpson of the Royal Canadian Navy, along with special guests MP Scott Andrews (Avalon), Navy League representative Bernadette Trickett and Dave Barrett from the Royal Canadian Legion, took part in the demonstrations.
Master Seaman Matthew Mahoney then leads the drill team in an impressive and elaborate demonstration involving both precision marching and a rifle crusade, verbalizing every command with ease.
The final activity is a 16-person physical activity display and relay between two predetermined teams.
Participants crawl underneath a volleyball net attached to two small overturned wooden benches, ran through six hula-hoops and finishing off with a leap over a three-foot-high gymnastics block.
It is mentioned by an officer in the corps that the physical training group had taken part in an activity where they stayed up for 14 hours and then completed pushups and other strenuous activity at 5 a.m.
After all the demonstrations and activities are complete, cadets fall in line again for the announcement of awards.
Two members of the squadron excelled with two prestigious awards apiece.
Petty Officer 1st Class Matthew Lane received the awards for Most Promising Third Year and Best Male Cadet.
A French Immersion and Level II student at Ascension Collegiate in Bay Roberts, Lane said he felt “pretty amazing” about receiving the awards.
He is also the lead snare drum player in the band, and hopes to continue on in that capacity next year.
Lane’s ambition is to become an engineer.
Petty Officer 1st Class Brandon Small smiled gratefully as he was handed his two awards — Best Dressed Cadet on Parade and Most Dedicated Cadet.
Small’s mother, Tina Small, said he should be acknowledged for the Best Dressed award especially because he “did it all on his own,” adding he irons his own clothes and shines his own boots.
A Level I student at Ascension Collegiate, Small has placed pride in his attire, and his dedication throughout the year, which his mother says is sign of his determination and loyalty to the cadet program.
“All (cadets) have worked so hard, and it paid off.”
Both Lane and Small have been sea cadets for the past four years, and both were members of Navy League cadets for three years.
Petty Officer 2nd Class Matthew Lane accepts the award for Best Male Cadet from his commanding officer, Lt. Gerald Mercer. Lane is the lead snare drum in the cadet band and also received the Most Promising Third Year award.
Leading Seaman Erica Dixon shows an audience volunteer the correct way to toss a rope and hit a target during the sea cadet demonstrations June 1 at All Hallows Elementary in North River.
Petty Officer 2nd Class Matthew Mahoney salutes the inspecting officers while leading the Guard march through All Hallows Elementary gymnasium. Mahoney received the Leadership Award at the annual ceremonial review June 1.
A group of four female sea cadets — LS Taiya Efford, LS Merissa Whelan, LS Laken Pottle and LS JayLynn Smith — demonstrate the construction of a rope and pulley system to a group of audience volunteers during a demonstration at the ACR.
Band Leader Master Seaman Wesley Sparkes (right) requests permission for inspecting officer Lt. Cmdr. Shannon Lewis-Simpson (centre), commanding officer of HCMS Cabot, to begin inspection. Commanding officer for 249 Effie M. Morrissey sea cadets Lt. Gerald Mercer waits patiently to begin.
Sub-Lt. Demita Hynes (right) adjusts the hat of bass drum player Petty Officer 1st Class Brandon Small prior to inspection. Small was the recipient of the Best Dressed and Most Dedicated Cadet awards.
Lt.-Cmdr Shannon Lewis-Simpson (left) compliments Master Seaman Chantelle O’Leary (second from right) on her boots during the annual ceremonial review. Also in photo are Leading Seaman Noah George-Goulding (right) and Petty Officer 2nd Class Matthew Mahoney.