The 3 RCR Army Cadet Drill team in competition at the Northern Ontario Area Cadet Band and Drill Competition in North Bay, ON. Drill Team members are (not in order) Cpl McGregor, Sgt Saunders, WO Saunders, Sgt Dempsey, Mcpl Quilty, Cpl Heyens, Mcpl Rose, Sgt Lessard, Cpl Godsell, Cpl Nordin, Cpl Beaulac, Cpl Gillis and WO Rheault, Drill Team Commander. (Submitted photo)
By Patricia Leboeuf
Posted on Thursday, June 2, 2016
PETAWAWA – Every Thursday evening, the 2642 3 RCR Army Cadet Corps Drill team practiced drill movements in preparation for the Northern Ontario Area Cadet Band and Drill Competition on Mother’s Day Weekend in North Bay.
Thirteen cadets received coaching instruction on the art and precision of drill without arms from Coaches MWO Green, Capt Heidel, Sgt Smith, and CI Phillips as well as additional staff members like Capt Bridgeman. Drill has been an important staple of the Army Cadet Corps’ weekly training regime, particularly for Regular, CO, and Ceremonial Parades.
Cadets learn a transferable skillset that will prove to be invaluable in life outside of the Army Cadet Corps. Drill strongly requires teamwork, self-control, discipline, and leadership to march, as well as maneuver in unison as a cohesive squad. According to Coach MWO Green, “in order to make drill work, everyone works as a team.”
They also develop physical coordination and precision as well as the ability to listen to fellow cadets’ commands. More so, the cadets who joined the team feel they developed better drill habits and greater confidence in themselves while acquiring more exposure to the Cadet Corps Training Program.
Cadets who joined the Drill team gave up their free time to train. So why join? WO Saunders has been on the drill team for three years since he began as a private. He enjoys coming out to train but also heading to competitions because of the people he meets and the fun memories he shares with his teammates. Cpl Nordin also joined this year because he finds drill “fun.”
Legacy and friendship also appear to go hand in hand. Sgt Dempsey says he saw how much fellow cadet, Sgt Levac, enjoyed the drill team. “I then wanted to carry on what he left behind,” he says. “Since I made that choice, I’ve enjoyed it!”
2642 3 RCR Army Cadet Corps Drill team members as well as their coaches are also confident this year’s team will have had more success at the Regional Competition than in the past. Sgt Saunders says her reason for having “high spirits” is because she feels this year’s team is much better than the last.
“Their drill is quite superior than in the past,” says Coach CI Phillips. His reasoning – “They learned tremendously fast and were eager to better themselves at drill.”
The Drill team is still waiting to receive their final score in drill without arms and was among about 350 cadets competing throughout the weekend. Their team was evaluated on drill movement individually and as a team, their uniform inspections, and how well they followed orders at the Northern Ontario Area Cadet Band and Drill Competition.
Whether the Army Cadet Corps Drill team moves on to Provincials and hopefully, Nationals is unforeseeable, but the camaraderie of teammates and the skills they developed this year will remain.
Most significantly, the cadets’ hard work, discipline, and determination left an impression on the Drill team’s coaching staff.
“I personally feel the cadets have given it their all and I am very proud of this year’s team,” Coach Sgt Smith proudly states.
2642 3 RCR Army Cadet Corps welcomes new members and accepts any youth between the ages of 12 and 18. Interested youth can come to Building O-9 (Korea Hall), Garrison Petawawa, on Tuesday evenings from 6 to 9 p.m. and must have a parent to register.