Cadet Concentration 2014
Corporal Stratford and Corporal Taborowski
On Friday, 11 April 2014, 88 Army Cadets and staff from 1292 Calgary, 2716 Mayerthorpe, and 3070 Evansburg Cadet Corps departed their home units for a weekend adventure at the Harvey Building. They were introduced to army life, starting with a fire drill, supervised by firefighters from Edmonton Garrison. After standing outside in the elements briefly, they quickly moved back to the Regiment, heading to the Track Pad where Corporal Taborowski and Corporal Stratford had video games and a canteen area set up for their leisure.
Saturday morning, reveille was at 0600. The Cadet staff, some of whom were parents of the Cadets, had never seen their kids spring out of bed so quickly! It appeared that the Cadets were excited to experience a slice of Armoured Crewman life. After breakfast, the Cadets divided into groups in preparation for the day’s events. Serving members of A, Recce and HQ Sqns set up stands designed to show the Cadets how Armoured Crewmen operate on a day- to-day basis, or at least on an operational schedule. The first stand was a static Coyote display, demonstrated by Corporal Radford and Corporal Shaw of Recce Sqn. The Cadets enjoyed playing with the surveillance equipment and spying on the other groups walking around. The next stand the Cadets experienced was a quick ride on a Leopard 2A4 tank, courtesy of A Sqn. Master Corporal Murdoch treated the Cadets to a thrilling tank ride including traversing every possible mud puddle on the driving circuit. Trooper Francis learned that wearing rain gear is always useful, even when it may not be raining per se. Corporal Stratford helped supervise the Cadets as they waited for their tank ride. Master Corporal Murdoch and Trooper Francis even took time to recover a truck that was trying to drive through the mud.
After the tank rides, the Cadets went to a small arms display under the direction of Corporal Wagner and Corporal Taborowski. The favourite moment at this stand was Cpl Taborowski’s demonstration of his CBRN skills, especially when he donned on his gas mask as quickly as possible. The next stand was a Leopard 2 static display run by Corporal Phelan and Corporal Blacklock. The Cadets thoroughly enjoyed climbing all over the tanks parked in the White Whale. Some of them even learned how to start up a tank.
The Cadets were also able to use the Leopard 2 gunnery simulators located in the Regimental Simulation Centre under the supervisions of Corporals Younger, Bishop and Smith. The Cadets enjoyed engaging static tank targets before trying to hit moving targets. Many Cadets successfully shot down moving helicopters! Corporal Girling of HQ Sqn, along with Corporal Fong from A Sqn, ran the Cadets through a C7 range in the Small Arms Trainer located next door in the LTF Building. Each group had a heated contest to see who the ‘Top Shot’ was. Saturday ended with the Cadets enjoying a movie, complete with sugar snacks, much to the delight of the Cadets’ staff.
Sunday was not nearly as busy as the previous day but loads of fun nonetheless. The Cadets were treated to a Historical Vehicle Troop demonstration. They especially enjoyed the contrast between the new Leopard 2s and the venerable Centurion and Sherman tanks. After a group photo, they all proceeded to raid the Regimental Kit Shop, spending their parent’s hard earned cash before boarding their buses and heading back to their home units. They had an exciting and tiring weekend at the Harvey Building that provided ample opportunity for bragging rights over their friends back at home. Where else does one go to shoot weapons, destroy helicopters while donning gas masks after a Leopard 2 tank ride? Answer: LdSH(RC).