14 Sep 14 MEDIA RELEASE
How does a 17 year old cap off a six year cadet career after achieving a private power pilot’s license? Cadet Warrant Officer 1st Class Max Warren of the local 155 Cadet Squadron, (Sqn) does. Being selected as one of seven cadets representing Canada on a three week exchange to the Netherlands with 20 other cadets from 8 countries that is how.
Prior to departing for the exchange Max went to visit a very good friend of the 155 Air Cadets, Mr Paul Deldsag, past owner of Canadian Tire who on May 22nd 1944 arrived in the Netherlands on the end of a parachute after his Lancaster Bomber was shot down. He and another crew mate fellow Canadian, Norman Warf were the only two survivors of the seven man crew. Max got to hear how the Dutch buried the five crew members lost that night in their small civilian cemetery in Northern Holland.
As well over the years tended them lovingly, replacing the headstones with new ones years later and holding a annual remembrance service in May. Mr Paul Delsag honoured his fallen crew members years later by having a monument erected to commemorate their sacrifices .This helped to set the tone for the time that Max would experience on his exchange from a local veteran. The seven Canadian cadets arrived in Ottawa where they took part in cultural tours in the Ottawa area after which it was a flight to the Netherlands were they meet up with the other 20 air cadets. The participating countries included, 7 from the UK, 3 Australian, 3 German, 2 Swiss, 2 South Korean, 3 French and 2 from Hong Kong. While on their cultural tour Max was accompanied by the 155 Sqn. mascot Leading Air Cadet Bear who was in numerous pictures during the tour to help show the local cadets back home the what was experienced.
Some of the highlights was going gliding on two different occasions. Max observed as a pilot himself that, “in the Netherlands they winch launching a lot, stay in the air longer and can do aerobatic flying”. “They focused on pleasure and enjoying the hobby “. “Although in the Netherlands there is not the opportunity for their cadets to get a full pilot license, where as in Canada a cadet can earn both glider and power . I learned that all the other countries have to pay to fly, which gave me a deep appreciation for what the Canadian Air Cadet Program has to offer”. Although not able to get to see the monument that Paul Delsage had spoken about they did visit the Netherland American Cemetery in Magraten.
“They have over 8,301 soldiers lying there” stated Max. “It was my first time at such a large cemetery which was an eye opening experience and gave a lot deeper appreciation for their sacrifice”. “As well each grave site is adopted by a Dutch family and taken care of which showed me how revered this part of history is for them”. “A one day trip to the Arnhem Bridge where we were taught about Operation Market Garden”. ” It was really interesting being on the site of a place of high courage, determination and heroism”. There was several tours of Dutch Royal Air Force where the cadets got see different types of military aircraft. “The exchange ” gave me the utmost respect and appreciation for the Canadian Cadet Program and I’d like to give back to the program in the future”. “My trip showed how different were around the world, and really opened your eyes on the different ways of life”.
The 155 Air Cadets is currently accepting new recruits male and female between the ages of 12 to 18 years of age. Weekly training is done on Wednesday nights at the Pine St. Armoury starting at 18:30. There is no monetary fees to join, issue of a uniform or participate in regular training. There opportunities to take bag pipe and drumming lessons to become part of the award winning 155 Pipe and Drum Band. The only cost to young people is challenging themselves to achieve goals to advance and learn to be leaders. For further information please contact at 705-949-6808.