I was nominated by Liberate Wings to post one travel photo a day for the next 10 days. This was the final photo in this series, but due to a high volume of readers showing interest in this oldie but goodies, I might have to toss in a post now and then!
West Coast Trail, BC circa 2006.
This photo I hold very dear because it marked a point in my life where I finally embraced who I always was.
Personal growth is something I am constantly struggling with and then there are instances when I see someone else I know grow, that ignites something inside me and I suddenly can overcome my own complacency.
To all the cadets of Canada I bring you a short message. I am who I am today largely thanks to 699 Jasper Place Squadron. Some of you may have heard of the Woods Canada Dream Job and many of you know of the Trans Canada Trail as I’m sure you’ve all taken a part in helping develop this heritage trail. 5 months ago I was hired by Woods Canada to highlight coast to coast, sections of the TCT and because I was a member of the Royal Canadian Air Cadets I succeeded against over 3800 other applicants.
To see my application video for the Woods Canada Dream job click:HERE
I am hoping to inspire and illustrate to you all that there is value in your training and experience. Mind you, you still have to go out and grab the things you want but be proud of where you came from and be proud of the accomplishments you have achieved via the RCACS.
Here is a little insight to who I was as a cadet.
I started just before I was 12. Both my brothers were members at 699 and I couldn’t wait to be a part of it, so Captain Lindley Scott, my commanding officer let me join a little early. (I will have a whole post on how amazing Captain Lindley Scott is so stay tuned.)
From there I learned that I was passionate about drill, leadership, athletics and well pretty much everything. I was part of the range team, sport teams, drill team, flag party, and even biathlon.
By the time I was 15 I was a Flight Sergeant and Drill Team commanding 2IC. That was the year we won Silver in compulsory and Gold in Precision in the Provincial Drill Competition. Crazy. I will never forget that moment in my life when they called out 699 Jasper Place. My ears where ringing and everyone was screaming and I don’t think I even knew what was happening. Treasure these moments.
I remember basic training in Penhold, Ab. That was the first year I ever received an award and I think from there it changed the way I pursued my cadet career. Top Cadet. Next to two of my friends who are still my friends to this day. Adam and Blake Thomas. There were other awards but I’ll save that for another post.
Some of the other courses I did were Intro to Leadership (I.L.C), Physical Education and Recreational Training (P.E.R.T), Athletic Instructor Course (A.I.C), and Instructeur En Survie (I.E.S) Survival Instructor Course (S.I.C) in Bagotville, QC.
I am so grateful for the opportunities and experiences I was given through the RCACS. I mean my first time camping was backcountry in a parachute tent. I never even used so called “camping gear” until I was 18 or camped at a “camp site”. Everything I learned was from the basics and it taught me how to be resourceful. That’s why I guess I don’t need all these gadgets to have a good time in the bush.
I made friends that even to this day are my closest and dearest friends though many of them may live across the country and many I haven’t spoken to in years but I always know that we will be friends for life.
Cadets has enriched my life. It has taught me the importance of leading by example. I have learned the value of following as well as leading. I know that I can get any job once I make it to the interview, thanks to board interviews and mock boards. I understand the importance of respect and discipline.
I don’t have many photos of my time as a cadet due to unfortunate circumstances. But when I find more of them be sure I will be sharing them and the stories that lay behind them. If anyone has any photos of our time together in cadets please send them my way!
Anyways, I just wanted to make a quick shout out to the organization that changed my life.