3012 (LYNX) ROYAL CANADIAN ARMY CADET CORPS
A BRIEF HISTORY
3012 (Lynx) Royal Canadian Army Cadet Corps was officially formed on July 1st, 1985 as "Our Lady of Lourdes Army Cadet Corps" and was initially sponsored by the Lourdes Chapter of the Knights of Columbus. Since 1994, however, the Cadet Parents' Committee has assumed the responsibility of Official Sponsor. The Corps is affiliated with the 2nd Battalion of the Royal Newfoundland Regiment and receives its training support from "C" Company, located in Stephenville. The Corps is also sponsored by the Department of National Defence and the Army Cadet League of Canada, however the majority of funds for day-to-day operations is the responsibility of the Parents' Committee. Like the founding Town of Lourdes, the Corps was not without its trials and tribulations. Lacking any expertise whatsoever in the formation of a Corps, the Town called upon Mr. Gerald Smith, then the School Principal, to conduct initial enquiries and with the assistance of the Area Cadet Officer from St. John's, condensed training was provided to a "green staff." Lo and behold, the 1st Commanding Officer, Officer Cadet Len Greene, ably assisted by the Knights of Columbus, managed to make it through to the 1st Annual Ceremonial Review. The rest is history.
The Corps has enrolled well over 1,000 cadets since 1985 and is represented by cadets from most Communities on the Peninsula. Over the past 30 years the Corps has produced many outstanding cadets who have made impressive achievements, both with the Corps and in their personal lives. Almost all who have senior positions in the Corps have gone on to University/College and subsequent careers, with many opting for careers in the Canadian Forces. So far the Corps has produced almost two hundred "Gold Star" cadets with at least 75 reaching "National Star Certification" and nearly 50 reaching the pinnacle of the cadet movement with appointments as "Master Cadets." Approximately 30 cadets each year attend Summer Training at various Cadet Summer Camps across Canada, ten have attended International Exchanges, two attended International Expeditions (Tony Collier & Blake Benoit), another went to France & Belgium for the Royal Newfoundland Regiment's 90th Anniversary Pilgrimage (Paul Doucette) and one cadet completed the Basic Military Parachutist Course (Maurice Chaisson) as well as being appointed Regimental Sergeant-Major of the National Air Rifle Marksmanship Competition, and being the only Newfoundland & Labrador Cadet to accompany Canadian World War I Veterans on a pilgrimage to Europe. At least five cadets each year are employed as "Staff Cadets" at various Summer Camps teaching younger cadets what they have learned over the years and earning good salaries for doing so. In 2009 one of our cadets (Sarah Gaudon) was appointed Regimental Sergeant-Major of Cadet Summer Training Centre Argonaut, holding the top cadet position of a Summer Camp, training over 1,000 cadets annually. In 2010 she was appointed Company Sergeant-Major of Rocky Mountain Army Cadet Advanced Training Centre. Both of these were the first times ever for the Corps. In 2013, Taylor Rowe accompanied the Royal Canadian Legion to France for July 1st Remembrance Ceremonies at Beaumont Hamel.
Although the Corps has, at times, had difficult to survive and compete, it has also made great strides. It now boasts a 12 piece Military Marching Band, 7 member Colour Party, an Honour Guard and a competetive Air Rifle Shooting team. Over the years the Corps has competed in Provincial Drill Competitions, Provincial Marksmanship Competitions and numerous other Zone Competitions. It is also the only known Bilingual Cadet Corps on the Island and proudly flies the Province's Francophone Flag. In 2005, with many of the cadets belonging to local Mi'Kmaq Indian Bands, the Corps reached another milestone and is now also proudly displaying the flag of the Mi'Kmaq Nation. Many of our cadets in the Corps now enjoy full status under the Indian Act as aboriginal peoples in the newly formed "Qalipu" Indian Band.
The Cadet Corps is very involved locally and supports the Parish in all its fundraising activities. It also conducts annual Remembrance Ceremonies in all the Peninsula Schools and at the Regional War Memorial. "Cadets Caring for Canada" has found all the cadets involved in some environmental project or cleaning up Parish properties and cemeteries. Pomp and Ceremony is the order of the day at the Opening Ceremonies of the Annual Fall Fair or at the Annual Ceromonial Review of the Corps when cadets graduate to the next level and impress their parents, family, friends and the general public with their new-found knowledge and skills. Add to it all; cadet outings, excursions, competitions, physical fitness, fieldcraft, bushcraft, map & compass, leadership, marksmanship, drill and Citizenship and it equates to an outstanding youth program - "The Best Kept Secret In Canada."
In past years the Duke of Edinburgh Awards Program was initiated in the Cadet Corps for the first time, thanks to the tireless efforts of Lieutenant Judy Gaudon for coordinating and executing the requirements of the Program. We have had 27 cadets participate in the Program, 19 of whom have progressed to either the Bronze or Silver levels and seven who have completed the Gold Level of the Award: Blake Benoit, Brandon Skinner, Paul Doucette, David Barter, Kelsey Collier, Kyrill Kerfont and Sarah Gaudon have received their Gold Awards from either Princess Anne or the Governor General of Canada. They now share a bond with thousands of young people throughout the British Commonwealth. It is noteworthy that nearly all of the requirements for all levels of the Duke of Edinburgh Awards Program can be obtained through the cadet program.
Until 1994, the official designation of the Corps was "Our Lady of Lourdes," however, at that time it was agreed upon by our Sponsor that, as the majority of cadets came from surrounding communities, a more generic name was needed. After much deliberation the name "Lynx" was adopted as it is an animal that is synonymous with the area and, more importantly, possesses the strong family traits and loyalties that the Corps strives to instill in its cadets. The Corps Motto, "Strenght Thru Adversity" is indicative of the struggle over many years to keep the Corps alive and strong. Presently our new Crest and Motto is on our Corps Flag, awards, Certificates and other Corps regalia. It is believed that the future of the Corps is limited only by the imagination of all involved in supporting its activities. Towards this end, Cadets, Staff and Sponsors continue to honour the Army Cadet Motto "ACER ACERPORI" (As the Maple, so the Sapling) and its own Corp Motto "Strength Thru Adversity.
Our Lady of Lourdes Parish has been one of the Corps' biggest supporters and continues to provide infrastructure for the cadets to carry out local training.
LCDR Gerald Hartley - Commanding Officer
CORPS COMMANDING OFFICERS
2015 - Lieutenant Commander Gerald Hartley
CORPS REGIMENTAL SERGEANT-MAJORS
2016 - 2017 Chief Warrant Officer Richard Dennis
This page last modified on Saturday, October 15, 2016