By Jim Harris
I thought we’d been transported to another planet – there were Green Monsters everywhere. Actually, I was at the 50th Anniversary Reunion of the Apprentice Training Squadron, Royal Canadian School of Military Engineering that took place at beautiful Chilliwack, BC on Thanksgiving weekend. Many will recall that the Sapper Apprentices were affectionately nicknamed “Green Monsters“ because of the green stripes worn on their epaulets.
On Friday 10 October 2003, over 200 apprentices and wives met in the “Gun Room” at the former Canadian Forces Officer Candidate School facilities at CFB Chilliwack. This facility is now a state-of-the-art Executive Inn that hosts RCMP students. Can you imagine, Apprentices and RCMP under the same roof ? !
Stories were rampant - with embellishments from previous reunions added on. And this year there were quite a few apprentices in attendance who had never been to a reunion previously. They will be back!
Saturday morning saw 66 brave souls face unusual but sympathetic weather on the golf course, followed by a hearty lunch. Dave Price and Marie Kimmerly were the tournament winners in the Men’s and Ladies event. Tom Walton, won the Closest-to-the- Pin/ Ladies - and he wasn’t even there!
As evening drew nigh, Gents and their Ladies prepared for a sumptuous sit-down dinner with all the trimmings, wine, dessert(s) and 50s and 60s music well into the morning. We were particularly honored to have our Colonel Commandant and his wife with us for the dinner Dance. It was good to hear about what all has gone on during this 100th Anniversary of the CME.
Sunday, with a few aches and moans, we assembled for a brunch that would satisfy any man several times over and more dessert(s), specialty coffees and teas, and lots of juices for those ‘under-the-weather.’ Following brunch, the Intakes marched past, accompanied by 50s and 60s music provided by Wayne Jones.
Throughout the weekend there was a static Sapper Apprentice display that was provided by the CFB Chilliwack Historical Society (CFBCHS), a kit shop provided by Mike and Joanne Boughner and sales of CFB Front Gate pictures and a “Military Grub” cook book produced by CFBCHS.
Jean Thivierge and his committee “done real good” once again, and most committee members pledged to commit themselves to an even better reunion in 2006.