By Cadet Master Warrant Officer Diana Liu
On June 14, two cadets from 1725 Royal Canadian Engineer Cadet Corps based in Chilliwack were distinguished as top cadets within B.C.
Warrant Officer Luke Brown was awarded the Major-General W.A. Howard medal, an award for achieving overall training excellence given to only one fourth-year cadet from each province and territory.
Chief Warrant Officer Nelson Gidney was awarded the Army Cadet League of Canada B.C. Branch President’s Trophy which is presented annually to one outstanding Army Cadet in the Pacific Region who has demonstrated leadership, initiative, mentorship, and dedication to the Army Cadet Program in their community.
Both Brown and Gidney competed with cadets from the 49 other cadet corps in B.C. and showed incredible personal achievements in order to merit their prospective awards.
Brown was the 2020 recipient of the Major-General W.A. Howard award, earning his medal for having demonstrated outstanding performance in the fourth-year, gold-star level. When he was awarded this award initially, he said he felt a rush of excitement and a loss for words. He attributes his success to his senior cadet mentors and will follow in their footsteps by refining his teaching skills, reaching provincials with the biathlon team, and staying with cadets until he ages out.
“Cadets has benefited me in many ways. When I first joined I was a very shy and nervous person, but since joining I have made awesome memories, and friends, and now I am more social and responsible,” Brown said.
Gidney is the first cadet from 1725 Engineer cadet corps to be awarded the President’s Trophy in the 81 years of the corps’ history. He attributes his success to the support and encouragement of his family, the guidance of both cadet and officer mentors. Gidney said his distinguished discipline, leadership abilities and dedication was developed almost entirely within the cadet program.
“The cadet program is unequivocal in developing Canada’s youth into model citizens. It is the place I’ve met many of my greatest friends. Youths will not find a more accepting and overall amazing program,” Gidney said.
In the future, he plans to continue growing 1725 into an even better cadet corps. He is also hopeful of being selected as Canada’s top cadet and representing 1725, Chilliwack, and B.C. on a national level.