Cpl Eric Richer, CD
After almost 16 years of loyal and dedicated service to the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) and the Canadian Military Engineer Branch, Cpl Eric Richer, CD (bio attached), retired 11 April, 2016. A Depart with Dignity Ceremony will take place at the 1 Combat Engineer Regiment (Patton) Building in Edmonton, on 17 1300 Jun 2016. Attendees are requested to advise the OPI of their planned attendance NLT 10 June 2016. Anecdotes or retirement wishes may be sent to the OPI by e-mail. OPI: WO Ryan MacArthur or by phone at 780-265-2337.
Born in St-Catherines, Ontario on the 31st of October 1980 he moved to Sudbury, Ontario the following year. Having been born on Halloween, it should come as no surprise his love of candy. Eric remained an only child surrounded by a large and loving extended family. After joining the 2915 Royal Canadian Irish Regiment army cadets in 1993 he found his future path. After graduating from L’École Secondaire Catholique L’Horison he officially joined the military on the 29th of June 2000 in Sudbury, Ontario as a 041 Field Engineer.
After Basic training in Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu, Quebec, Corporal Richer then continued on with Field Engineering TQ 3 training in Gagetown, New Brunswick. Upon Graduation in September 2001, Corporal Richer was posted to 1 Combat Engineer Regiment (1 CER) where he served with 4 Troop 12 Field Squadron. Corporal Richer deployed to Afghanistan in January 2002 on Operation Apollo, as a section member and section communication operator. Upon returning from tour, Corporal Richer was promoted to the rank of Corporal on the 15th of July 2003, and was employed in the Regimental Quartermaster Stores (RQMS) for several years. In 2008 he deployed to Afghanistan for a second time. On this tour Corporal Richer deployed as a Section Three IC. Near the end of the tour and injuries sustained Corporal Richer was moved to TOC where he was placed as an ESCC operator. After tour Corporal Richer filled many positions in the Regiment from Family Support Section to Squadron Training NCO. Finally landing himself in the coveted RSM’s assistant seat in 2012. While in this position he had the honour of working with CWO (retired) Vida, CWO Doucet and CWO McPherson. In February 2013 the Minister of Defense, Peter McKay was in Alberta to visit CFB Cold Lake and not only did he have the privilege of driving him and his entourage, Corporal Richer was able to strike up small talk. As a way of thanks he was gifted with a Minister of Defence coin. 2014 was a special year as he was able to help with the Poppy Memorial Outreach Program, a program that connects all 162 fallen soldiers from the Afghanistan War, with fellow military members and the public. He created a framed picture of the actual Badger, after receiving battle damage in Afghanistan in 2008, from which the Poppy Memorial is made. This picture travels with the Memorial and is displayed any time the Memorial is set up. As such a piece of him and 1CER will forever be linked with it. With injuries obtained during his second tour and surgery being unsuccessful, a medical release was decided. As such, Corporal Richer started and ended his career with 1 Combat Engineer Regiment. During his lengthy military career he was awarded the Command-in-Chief-commendation, the Southwestern Asian Service medal plus Afghan bar, the General Campaign Star Southwest Asia, the Queen Diamond Jubilee medal and the Canadian Decoration. Eric and his loving wife Melissa, son Jean-Luc, and daughter Alexa will be staying in the Edmonton region for the near future. Chimo!