New Gunners Fire For Effect
By Captain Nicholas Kaempffer
The Royal Regiment of Canadian Artillery School (RCAS) is proud to announce the graduation of the latest course of Development Period 1 Artillerymen on the 7th of June, 2017. Joining the hallowed ranks of the Royal Canadian Artillery (RCA), these Gunners are now part of a team that will provide on-time, on-target firepower to the Canadian Army. During six-weeks of demanding training, these Artillerymen learned to operate the 155mm M777 C1 Howitzer, with garrison instruction confirmed through a dynamic live-fire exercise that included multiple fire missions, anti-tank engagements, and a force-protection battle. Graduates will be posted to both the RCAS and 4th Artillery Regiment (General Support) (4 Regt (GS)) here at Base Gagetown.
One of twenty graduates from this training, Gunner Tyrone Polson-Kakekayash of Notre-Dame-du-Nord, QC is looking forward of his posting to 4 Regt (GS), as he begins a challenging and varied career as an Artilleryman. Both he and his fellow course-mate, Gunner Michael Futter of Prince George, BC, beamed with pride during their badging ceremony, where they exchanged their tri-service cap-badge for their that of the RCA, aware of the gravitas of that moment when they joined the Regimental family. Gunner Francisco Galiana-Audet of Montreal, QC earned the distinction as Top Candidate, as he continually demonstrated outstanding skills, physical fitness, and abilities that set him apart from his peers. When asked about his experience on the course, Gunner Galiana-Audent responded that he had a lot of fun, and that that the best part of training was making great friends from across Canada. Dreaming of joining the Canadian Armed Forces since he was a child, he is excited to serving his nation as a trained Artilleryman.
Many instructors worked long hours to diligently train these students to the highest of standards, all under the watchful eyes of the course programmer, Warrant Officer Michael Waterfield. “Creating Gunners is like making steel,” explained Warrant Officer Waterfield, “we take a basic-trained soldier, and apply just the right mix of instruction, physical training, and focused aggression, which we then confirm through realistic training. The end-result is a highly resilient Artilleryman capable of operating day and night, who answers the all-important call for fire.” With six courses under his belt as a course programmer, Warrant Officer Waterfield is proud of his team, who continue to strive towards the excellence demanded of the Kings of Battle.
The graduation ceremony of these Gunners is always an important moment for friends and family, who have travelled from across Canada to experience the pride and pageantry of a military ceremony. Lieutenant Colonel Vincent Giroux and Chief Warrant Officer François Vidal, Commandant and Regimental Sergeant Major of the RCAS, wish the best of luck to Canada’s newest Gunners.
Photo One Caption: Gunner McLandress and Gottschall elevate the M777C1 Howitzer barrel for a high angle fire mission. Credit: Gunner Galiana-Audet
Photo Two Caption: Members of Gun Detachment 45C prepare to engage an armoured threat with the M777C1 Howitzer during their live-fire field training exercise. Credit: Gunner Galiana-Audet
Photo Three Caption: Members of the DP 1 course pose for a course photo at the end of their confirmation exercise. Credit: Bdr Genereux