Cadet Christina Cardiff wasn’t sure if she’d be promoted on Saturday’s annual ceremonial review (ACR).
After all, it would be her last as a cadet.
But when her name was called for a promotion to Warrant Officer 1st Class, the highest rank an air cadet can reach, she had the biggest smile of the entire parade.
She’ll be aging out of cadets soon, after six years with Royal Canadian Air Cadet Squadron 374 F/L Chisholm in Westville.
“When I first joined, I hardly knew anyone,” she said. “Now, at the end, I know everyone. I call the cadets ‘my kids.’”
Those kids were the 35 air cadets from across Pictou County present for the ACR at G. R. Saunders Elementary School. It was an opportunity to showcase the hard work of the cadets to their parents, friends and families.
Political representatives Pictou East MLA Tim Houston and Justice Minister and Central Nova MP Peter MacKay were present; the latter joined the reviewing party.
This past weekend’s event was a milestone, as the squadron celebrated 70 years in the Stellarton/Westville area.
“Many of our cadets have gone on to become pilots, lawyers and contributing members of their community,” noted Commanding Officer Capt. Catherine Kelly. “And let's not forget our friend George Canyon was a member of this squadron too.”
The cadets strutted their stuff in the form of a drill team display and band and flag display. One of the cadets, Cpl. Abby Stroud, performed a highland dance for the parade as Pipe Major Flight Sgt. Scott MacIntosh played.
The ACR is also a time to recognize the achievements of cadets through medals, plaques and trophies. The highest honour that a cadet can receive, the Lord Strathcona Medal, was awarded to Flight Sgt. David Bishop of Stellarton.
“That moment was definitely a highlight of my time in cadets,” said Bishop. “I joined cadets to learn discipline and leadership and after getting this medal, I know I must be doing something right.”
The reviewing officer for this year’s parade was Jim Mullins, chairman of the Nova Scotia Provincial Committee of the Air Cadet League of Canada. His background included being an army cadet who joined the navy and in retirement works for the air cadet league.
“Watching the parade this afternoon, I can see that Pictou County’s and indeed Canada’s future is looking brighter because of young people like you,” he said to the cadets. “Keep up the good work.”
For more information on 374 Air Cadets, please contact Capt. Catherine Kelly at 921-1040 or at firstname.lastname@example.org
On Twitter: @NGNewsJohn