Strathcona Ladies Visit the Regiment in the Field
By Major Mike Onieu
On 29 September, 32 Regimental spouses came to see the Regiment in the field in Wainwright. While we hold an annual Family Day, it is very rare that our spouses get a firsthand look at what we do. Under the guidance of the CO's Secretary and organizer of the Spousal Visit, Kathy Batty, our spouses came out to Range 16 to watch Leopard tanks doing live fire. RSM Batty was at pains throughout the day to ensure the visit did not turn into "Conjugal Ram 2013" but everyone kept it PG. The wives enjoyed haybox meals and took a look inside our 5 man arctic tents to see how we live. SSM Marcel Chenier gave them an indepth briefing on maintenance and field ablutions. They completed some weapons familiarization under the guidance of MCpl Rob Kearns and got rides in the Leopard 2, which for many was the highlight of the day. For others it was the opportunity to conduct an engagement from a Leopard C2. The Recce Sqn spouses took a detour to Range 25 where they got a firsthand visit with Recce Sqn.
We've had spousal visits before but never with this level of engagement. Family is always important to the Strathcona's and the soldiers welcomed the opportunity to have their wives gain a deeper understanding of field life and conditions. The weather cooperated and months of sunshine were broken on this day by high winds and light rain, which added to the experience. Mrs. Lisa Hopkin noted that "I've waited 27 years for an opportunity like this."
The CO presented the Command Team Coin to Kathy for organizing the day, and the ladies left looking dirty and tired, which was exactly the intent.
'Check back later for more photos'