Branch Events - 2009

Branch Luncheons and Guest Speakers for 2009 were:

  • January 7        - Lt Col Tony O'Keeffe, D. Cadets RMC
  • February 4       - Capt. (Ret.) Charlene Fawcett
  • March 4           - Lt Col Gosselin
  • April 1 (!)          - Joel Ridley - RMC Taekwando Club Coach
  • May 6              - AGM - No speaker
  • June 3              - Speaker to be arranged
  • July 8                - John Cowan - History of the Club
  • August 5          - No meeting - Banyan Day
  • September 2    - TBA
  • October 7        - Glenn MacDonald - RMC Foundation
  • November 4     - Andrew Robb - European Battlefield Tour
  • December 2     - WO Andrew McLean - The "Soldier-On" Program


Commodore Truelove takes the salute of the cadet body during the RMC Remembrance Day ceremony at the Memorial Arch

Click for photo Slideshow

Commodore Truelove takes the salute from the cadet body

Branch - December, 2009 - Lunch

This was a special event for the Kingston Branch as we gathered not only to enjoy our usual fellowship and information session, but to honour two of our senior branch members, Brit Smith and Danny McLeod. These gentlemen were awarded honourary life membership in the Club at the AGM on 3 October, 2009. The Branch luncheon was an ideal platform to present the certificates to Brit Smith (H2652) and Danny McLeod
(H25917.) Reg Watts began the proceedings by giving a short history of the honourary numbering protocols, and then introduced the two presenters. Bob Billings gave the group a fascinating history of Danny McLeod at the College, and the presented the certificate and designation to RMC's newest recruit, Danny McLeod. Explanation - The Club regulations for the award are that the letter "H" is prefixed to ex-cadets numbers, and in the case of other meritorious recipients, they receive the H designation followed by the next number in the ROTP sequence! Then, Gerry Stowe gave the members a background picture of Brit and his accomplishments, followed by presentation of the honourary designation certificate. This brings the number of H designations at the Kingston Branch to 10, and considering there are only 51 such designations in Canada, we are doing well!


The event was exceptional in that we had a record turnout to honour our fellow members, but Commandant and Mrs Truelove attended, and  this was our first luncheon event open to spouses, partners and guests. We intend to have another open luncheon this year on an appropriate topic.

The Branch was pleased to hear a detailed presentation on the mission and goals of the "Soldier On" program presented by WO Andrew McLean.


Branch - November Lunch

A record turnout of branch members and guests were treated to an excellent presentation by 5207 Andrew Robb. His topic was "A Memorial Tour of European Battlefields." Having taken part in this tour earlier this year, Andrew prepared an professional photo storybook, and explained the meaning to Canadians of each memorial and gravesite visited. Although principally focussed on the land forces, some gravesites from other services were shown.                                             

Before the meeting concluded, Andrew read aloud the poem "Flanders Field" and called for a moment of silence in remembrance of the fallen in all theatres of war, including Afghanistan.




Cadet guests were 24825 OCdt Cooper Sinclair, CSL of 5 Sqn., and 24501 OCdt Tyson Babcock, CSL of 13 Sqn.  Both presented themselves well and agreed that the time at RMC had passed too quickly.


Out-of-town guest were 4669 Toivo Roht and 4804 Neil Johnstone from the Ottawa branch, in town for a meeting of the RMC Class of 60- 2010 reunion committee.

Branch Fall Formal Dinner

Despite inclement weather, an outbreak of cold, flu, and members headed south, an outstanding turnout of branch members greeted Commodore William Truelove and his wife Brenda at our annual Fall affair. Guest also included the Hon. John Matheson, the Hon. Peter Milliken, and Digger MacDougal from Ottawa Branch. Everyone enjoyed a fine meal and the music of Ross MacLachlan.

The Commandant briefed guests on the positive status of the College in all four pillars of purpose, requested the continued support of the Branch. Members were pleased to hear of the continued strategies to strengthen the quality of leadership within the cadet body. Commodore Truelove introduced his deputy,  13134 Colonel WJ (Bill) Lewis.


October Branch Lunch Highlights:

  • RMC Foundation  Executive Vice President, A126 Glenn MacDonald presented a report on the Foundation's status, directions, challenges and needs. Glenn then directed a discussion with members on how the Kingston Branch could support the Foundation. One concept was to provide a support function for the annual Legacy Dinner, advising on key components of the event, and acting as an informed resource. Glenn also suggested that the branch could serve as a platform for brainstorming on problems, options and new concepts. Branch President Reg Watts invited Glenn to use the Branch for this purpose, and the Branch Executive will incorporate his suggestions in future planning. A lively discussion followed.


  • Cadet Guests: As usual, we were pleased to have as our guests, 24649 Deputy CWC Kayla Macmillan, and CWTO Marc-Andre Pelland. Both cadets introduced themselves, described their career paths, and both spoke about the re-militarization of the cadet body, including the reintroduction of "The Circle." Marc-Andre is also a member of the Sandhurst Competition team.



  • Branch Past President Ed Murray gave the members a brief report on the progress of a proposed new Branch project, supporting the RMC band. Ed described the importance of the band in promoting the College through public appearances, the absence of public funding for band travel and identified some of the ways they could be assisted.  One option is to find funding for an endowment managed by the Foundation to support the Band's needs. Ed will continue to head up the project but welcomes assistance.

  • Branch member John Stewart spoke about the weekend dedication of the study room in Civil Engineering Department to Matt Dawe, son of Peter Dawe.

4 June Branch Luncheon



Bob Carr - President of Hamilton Branch and Brother of Chris Carr


E4613 Art Neadow


Branch Spring Formal Dinner

This year we had our largest Spring Formal turnout ever, and everyone enjoyed the candlelight ambience and the background music of Ross MacLachlan. Our dinner guests were S162 Jack Chiang, columnist, photographer, and now Justice of the Peace. Our speakers were E0733 LCol Tony O'Keeffe, DCadets, who described the heroic efforts of the RMC Sandhurst Military Skills Competition Team, Captain Nathan Price, coach of the Sandhurst Team, and the team leader O/C Jean LeBoutillier who described the reason that RMC has prevailed 4 time in the last 5 years in this competition against 46 military academies from around the world. The audience was spellbound and quickly rose with a standing ovation.

See Anyone You Know?











Two Tankers and a Pilot!!


Danny McLeod Proposes Toast                     O/C Jean LeBoutillier - RMC Sandhurst Team Leader

to fallen Comrades


  Guest Speaker - LCol A.J. O'Keeffe                    Outgoing President -  Ed Murray


The following "toast to the ladies," in Iambic Pentameter to mimic Shakespeare's sonnets, was written and presented by Charlie Simonds at the Branch Spring Formal. Critics are invited to submit their appreciations of Charlies work using the form in the "Contact" tab of the site.

In Praise of Ladies Living

Gracious lady’ is the term in common use;

An apt expression of their state, for first

They grace us with their bodies, giving birth,

Then nurse and nurture us throughout our youth.

They grace our homes with culinary skill,

With washing, mending, cleaning, serving all

The family, who expect with beck and call

The lady of the house to do their will.

They grace the office with proficiency

And at days end they often grace our bed

About which any more is best unsaid.

Yes, gracious, then, is truly what they be.

So raise with me a glass in praise of wives

And lady friends who kindly grace our lives.



Banyan 2009

The 2009 version of the Club Banyan was a great success. Starting with "Croquette by Charlene," music by Ross MacLachlan, a fantastic buffet, some dancing and fireworks from Fort Henry, all agreed that the evening was full of fun. Perhaps it was the fine weather and outdoor dining, or the presence of special guests Peter Milliken, Digger and Mel from Ottawa, and new branch members, or just that everyone was ready for a good time, we hope to strike the same chord at our next event. Photos will follow.

June 2009 Executive Committee Summary Report

Actions underway:
- Letter of appreciation to the Commandant.
- Letter to the incoming Commandant requesting that cadet files destruction be stopped.
- Book Award: Committee meets in August to consider revisions to the plan
- Old Brigade Dinner: Phil Antonsen and Charlene Fawcett will share responsibility for this activity  & responsibility to assist the OB Adjutant, Al Roberts in organising the dinner.
- Executive Position Roles were discussed and distributed.
- Responsibilities and action plans for ongoing Branch projects were discussed.
- Upcoming event speaker suggestions:
- November regular meeting: Andrew Robb on northern European memorials; WW I & WW II
- November formal dinner – Commandant

Sweat lodge ceremony!

The Aboriginal Leadership Opportunity Year (ALOY) staff and students are
hosting a Sweat Lodge to provide RMC staff and faculty with a greater
understanding of Aboriginal cultures and to support the ALOY programme
at RMCC.

The Sweat Lodge is traditionally a place of spiritual refuge and mental
and physical healing, a place to get answers and guidance by asking the
Creator and Mother Earth for the needed wisdom and power.

A Sweat Lodge Ceremony is to take place on October 19, 2009. This is a
unique opportunity for staff and faculty of RMCC to take part in this
cultural tradition.


April Branch Luncheon


Joel Ridley - RMC Taekwando Club Coach

We heard about Joel's background, his team's success, and their prospects and his plans for the future. Our club is doing well, and thanks to Joel. He also showed a very impressive video of his key team members in action, see the shot below.

Guests: The entire Executive Committee of the RMC Club Fort Saint Jean (6) and Andre´ Durand, Colleges Liaison Officer, joined us for lunch.

President Claude Tasse´ explained their efforts to harmonize the Quebec clubs with the RMC Club of Canada "Two Colleges, One Club" This was quickly corrected by Charlene Fawcett -"Three Colleges" Claude described the current situation at the College, and the Club's monthly efforts to work with the Commandant and staff. They hope to replicate our Branch social agenda.


Special Guest: We haven't seen her for a while but Dorothy Hector, hale and hearty joined us today!

RMC Theatre Club was represented by an s24314 O/C Aidan Solar who was on hand to sell tickets to both the English and French comedy productions this week. Hope you bought a ticket, Claude!




March Branch Luncheon


15144 LCol David M.N. Gosselin, C.D., Commandant of the Canadian Forces School of Communications and Electronics spoke to an unusually large Branch turnout on March 4. His topic was titled "The Warrior Scientist" David described how Cyberspace has become the sixth dimension of modern warfare. He outlined the emerging new strategies to deal in that space, and the generational and attitudinal impediments facing those who would implement a cohesive, integrated cyber-campaign plan. Members were pleased to hear of his new training strategies, upcoming Federal investments in the Kingston area, and the knowledge that Canada is not behind its allies in this field of cyber-strategy.

L-R, LCOL Gosselin, Capt. Evelyn Kotzer, and Danny Mcleod

Cadet Guest - 24134 Ncdt Teri Reil, 72 days from  graduation, appeared in the new #5 cadet dress to the approval of members. Teri is the Admin officer of #4 squadron, and a member of the women's rugby team. She spoke about topical cadet programs including community support activities, and received many questions from Branch members.


Al Qaeda - Afghanistan Lecture       On Monday, 9  February,  Colonel Ian
Hope presented a lecture entitled /Military History and the Modern Battlefield./

Colonel Ian Hope spoke about his experiences as a battle group commander in Kandahar.

A reprinted article from the Whig Standard is attached HERE (Click)


February  2009 Branch Luncheon

16010 Charlene Fawcett described her unusual career after graduating from RMC. She spoke to an exceptionally large turnout of branch members, using a slide show and video clips to illustrate some of her work in the latter part of her career before retirement. Of special interest to the group was the description of IED explosives research, and the tactical combat casualty care course. Questions followed.

Cadet Guest - 3Rd year O/C Elizabeth Eldridge described her some conditions at the College, and how her family influenced her choice of RMC. O/C Eldridge is CDSO of B Division, and is majoring in Business Administration.

January Branch Lunch


Despite the weather, the Branch turned out in numbers to hear LCol Tony O'Keeffe describe the situation, plans and challenges of his position as DCadets. Members were heartened to hear that he led the cadets in a run around the College that morning early, as one example of his intent to restore the leadership and officer development style of the College. Tony is not letting obstacles stand in his way of restoring the important and mission-related traditions and practices at RMC. A lively discussion followed as the members encouraged LCol O'Keeffe and provided examples of where practices had been abandoned. To this end, the Traditions and Practices Advisory Group (See inside) of the Branch will be an important resource for Tony as well as the Commandant.

We congratulate him on his efforts and plans and offer the Branch as a forum of continuing contact.


O/C Andrew Fenrich, Cadet Squadron Leader of 11 Squadron, was our guest for lunch. He addressed the members briefly and described his impressions of College life and the value of contact with ex-cadets.


At ease!