Members of the 581 Squadron holding their letters to be sent to Canadian Armed Forces members serving away from home. Photo: Matthew Mussio

Castlegar cadets write to those serving away from home

“…Someone who might not have gotten a letter from home will get one now.”

When the Canadian Armed Forces tweeted out an appeal for holidays greetings for soldiers serving away from home this holiday season, the Castlegar Air Cadets answered the call and got right down to work.

“I have a friend who has served overseas, in a variety of operations, so I know how important caring contact from home can be,” said Second Lt. Barb Makortoff the squadron’s administration officer who organized the letter-writing night. “Not all soldiers have a supportive family back home, but even those that do appreciate the care and thoughtfulness of those at home, known or unknown.”

“It makes me feel good to know that someone who might not have gotten a letter from home will get one now for the holiday season,” Said Flight Sgt. Dylan Hastie when asked about the letter he wrote.

The Castlegar Air Cadets also recently visited seniors in local care homes around the community during Remembrance Day activities and took part in the Castlegar Remembrance Day Services held on Nov. 11. “It only seemed like the next step to take to teach the younger generation, what it is all about. Lest we forget,” said Makortoff.

The aim of the air cadets is to “develop in youth the attributes of good citizenship and leadership; promote physical fitness; and to stimulate the interest of youth in the sea, land and air activities of the Canadian Armed Forces.” The Castlegar Air Cadets have been strong members of the local community since 1952, when they first received their charter.

The cadet program is open to all youth between the ages of 12-18 years old with a focus on leadership, citizenship and healthy living. They meet every Tuesday night at 6 pm. For more information, you can visit their Facebook page at or

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