75 Years of Assisting Youth to Become Leaders in Canada

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75th Anniversary ACL
L-R, Sgt Devin Moore, John Dalrymple, Cpl. Harmony Buzwa. Photo Credit: Capt. Roy Harten

Over one million youth have benefited from the support of the Air Cadet League of Canada since 1941in their goal of Learn, Serve, Advance. Three of these Air Cadets  have successfully graduated and pursued leadership roles while building on their interest in flying, L/Col.(Ret.)  Maryse Carmichael who was the first female Snowbird Pilot and then eventually returned to be appointed the Commanding Officer of the famed aerobatic team. As well Marc Garneau the first Canadian in space came through the Air Cadet Program. Also an Air Cadet alumni the more recent Canadian Astronaut Col. (Ret.) Chris Hadfield who is known for his spectacular photos from space, twitter updates of his mission and answering questions of Canadian school children not to mention his singing of David Bowies, “Space Oddity”, all from the International Space Station.

Two present day Air Cadet Cadets Sgt. Devin Moore and Cpl. Harmony Buzwa  and one former cadet John Dalrymple of the 155 Borden Grey Air Cadets look back in the history of the local squadron. The photo album they are looking at was presented to Sqn Leader Dan Murry and starts with pictures from 1952 when he took command of the 155, which was when Mr. Dalrymple was a cadet of the sqn. The two present day cadets are seen wearing their 75th Anniversary Pins. Mr Dalrymple is the Air Cadet League Ontario Provincial Committee Director. Thousands of Air Cadets have passed through the local 155 Sqn with some going onto pursue flying with one becoming a  Sea King Pilot and another currently the flying F-18 Fighter Jets as the Commanding Officer of  the newly stood up 401 Sqn L/Col. Joe Mullins. OThers have gone onto private or commercial roles with another former 155 Air Cadet who flies the Boeing 777 for Air Emerates.

To commemorate the 75 years of the Air Cadet League of Canada an anniversary pin was created and approved for the approximately 25,890 Air Cadets across Canada to wear on their uniform. The Air Cadet League of Canada in partnership with the Department of National Defence operates the Glider Flying Program across Canada which has a goal of providing annually one familiarization flight to every Air Cadet. As well Air Cadets can earn during summer training  their glider pilots license and then go onto earn their power pilots licence. Chris Hadfield earned his glider pilots license at age 15 and his power pilots licence at age 16 through the Air Cadet Program. Dr. Ron Common the current President of Sault College earned his power pilots license as an Air Cadet. The program is open to boys and girls age 12 to 18 years of age.

The 155 Air Cadet Sqn will be holding an Open House as well as the annual paper airplane contest on Wed Oct 7th at the Pine Street Armoury from 6:30 pm unit 9:15 pm for boys and girls aged 11 to 16. The Air Cadet program is free to join with no cost for uniforms or regular training. The 155 Air Cadets has an award winning Pipe and Drum Band which offer bag pipe and drum lessons as well as opportunities to learn about flying, aircraft and maintenance as well as meeting new friends. Come out and see what the 155 Air Cadet Sqn has to offer youth.

In 2017 the 155 will mark its 75th anniversary and we would like to hear from past cadet and staff alumni with stories and pictures.

For more information about the Open House and Paper Airplane Contest and more about the 155 you can see our web page at, www.aircadets.ca/155/.