Two Castlegar air cadets have returned from summer training and a third is off to Vancouver Island for a general training course.
Cadets Deannah Kaiser and Zachary McLachlan from the City of Castlegar Air Cadet squadron have both returned from summer training. FCpl. Kaiser was in Vernon where she participated in Basic Drill and Ceremonial, and McLaclan was in Victoria were he took Basic Survival.
“The first like week and a half, it’s a lot of classes for teaching you leadership and then you’re learning riffle drill and flag drill, and then just kind of the normal drill,” Kaiser said of Basic Drill and Ceremonial. “We do drill competitions. Our grad parade was like two hours and we did riffle drill the entire grad parade, so we had to do a lot of practice for that.”
Kaiser, who’s 14 years old and headed into Grade 10, is used to doing drills, as the Castlegar squadron has regular drill nights and has cadets practice drill for their annual cadet review. The training course also gave her a chance to work on her leadership skills, which will come in handy when she starts teaching drills herself.
Cadet Nicholas Gerrard, 13, is spending two weeks at Albert Head Cadet Training Centre near Victoria, participating in a General Training Course. The course is meant for cadets who have recently joined the program, and Gerrard has been a cadet for a year and a half.
“I am learning a whole bunch of stuff like music, range and drill — we even get to go flying,” Gerrard said in a press release. “That is just the first two days and I have made friends here already. It is great, I get to do things that I don’t get to do in my home squadron. We need a few more cadets before we can have our own band!”
Kaiser took the General Training Course last year. She enjoys the cadet program because the cadets are like a family and she’s gotten to know a lot of people, not just from Castlegar, but from communities across the Kootenays. Summer training gave her the chance to meet even more people from across the country. “Most of the people weren’t even from BC,” said Kaiser.
Every year approximately 40 per cent of cadets attend summer training, and like the cadet program itself, the summer training is free of charge. For more information on the cadet program visit cadets.ca.