Maj F.M. Bird, MSM, CD
Maj Frank Bird, MSM, CD, will retire on 18 August 2021 after more than 36 years of loyal and dedicated service to the Canadian Armed Forces and the Canadian Military Engineer Branch. Due to COVID-19 restrictions there will be no DWD; however, in July 2021, Maj Bird will host an open house (if possible) where people can physically drop by or join virtually in celebration of opening a new chapter in his adventure. Details of the event will be sent in separate correspondence when appropriate. Congratulatory messages and anecdotes can be sent to Capt D. Poss at David.Poss@forces.gc.ca.
Private Bird enrolled in the Canadian Armed Forces on 13 May 1985 in the Youth Employment Training Program (YTEP) Yes a YTEP!!
After a healthy indoctrination of all things Military at CFB Cornwallis he spent a year stumbling around the country as a Personnel Awaiting Training (PAT) Yes a PAT. He spent a month in the butts at Connaught Ranges, mopped floors, stripped furniture, operated an engraver at CFB Borden and, finally, spent the remaining months before his scheduled QL-3 annoying the School Chief Warrant Officer and Base Chief Warrant Officer at CFB Chilliwack; home of the Engineers! CHIMO!
After an intense re-indoctrination to all things Military and Combat Engineer he was shipped off to CFB Valcartier, WHAT? One of only two that were sent there as a lesson? Not to worry, Sapper Bird thrived in Quebec; the province where he eventually married his soul mate and where he learned an appreciation of French culture and a second language.
A short year in Valcartier and he was posted to Lahr West Germany (1987) where he completed a four plus year tour with Airfield Damage Repair Squadron. The highlight of his career posting, he and Julie (who he returned to Quebec to marry in 1989 and then smuggled her back to Germany) spent their time travelling all over Europe by plane, train, automobile and often bicycle! In September 1991 Frank and Julie sadly left Lahr (it closed up behind them) and returned to Valcartier for a second round of “forced immersion”. A few years at 5eRGC (1 st daughter born; Jamie) and it was across the country to Chilliwack to serve as an instructor at Canadian Forces School of Military Engineering, CFSME (1994). Another Daughter born (Mackenzie) and, reluctantly, it was off to the opposite coast to New Brunswick to support the reestablishment of the Engineer School in its new home at CFB Gagetown (Chilliwack closed behind them; notice a pattern here?).
Some more time at CFSME, a posting to 4 Engineer Support Regiment (4ESR), another daughter born; Alex (notice a pattern here?) and it was time for a radical change. Now Warrant Officer Bird decided he had had enough with being told what to do by cranky CWO’s and jumped fence to the officer world.
After Lt Bird commissioned from the ranks (CFR) he spent a bizarre six months at 4ESR where he was basically on a first name basis with virtually everyone at the unit. He took another radical direction change while at 4ESR and moved the Tribe to Yellowknife NWT where, as a Captain, he took command of the Recruiting Detachment. After two years of travelling to practically every single hamlet, town and outpost in NWT, Yukon and Nunavut he halted the road show, uprooted the family once again and headed to Ontario (2005). Informed by all voting members of the Bird-Pelletier Clan that there would be no more moves he settled into the Kingston circuit where he served as the Disaster Assistance Response Team (DART) Engineer Recce at Canadian Forces Joint Headquarters (CFJHQ 2005-2008), Base Construction Engineers Works Officer and Requirements Officer (BCE 2008-2011) and Land Force Doctrine and Training Centre LFDTS, (Engineer Doctrine 2011-2012).
Promoted to Major in 2012 he was posted IR (Imposed Restriction) back to CFSME as Officer Commanding Construction Engineer Squadron; a short but highly rewarding posting. Maj Bird returned to Kingston in 2013 into the now Canadian Army Doctrine and Training Centre, CADTC (formally known as LFDTS) as part of the stand- up of the new Validation Team. After CADTC Maj Bird returned to the Kingston cycle and was posted to 1 st Canadian Division HQ as the Headquarters Commanding Officer (2017). In 2019 Maj Bird was posted to Peace Support Training Centre (PSTC) as the Deputy Commanding Officer (DCO). It was during his tenure at PSTC and his time working from home because of COVID restrictions and, the fact that most of the people who have the best dirt on him have, for the most part, already left the forces that he decided it was time to safely retire.
Maj Bird has deployed multiple times over the course of his career, Germany, Gulf War, Bosnia, DART Op Burma, Iraq Operation Inherent Resolve and a second time to Iraq for the stand-up of NATO Mission Iraq where he received the Meritorious Service Medal. Frank and Julie will remain in Kingston in their forever home where they will continue to enjoy their love of water sports, travel (when possible) and quality time with family.
Due to COVID-19 restrictions there will be no DWD; however, in July of 21, Frank and Julie will be hosting an open house (if possible) where people can physically drop by or join virtually in celebration of opening a new chapter in their adventure. Details of the event will be sent in separate correspondence when appropriate.
Frank’s personal message:
“It has been an absolute honour and privilege to have served my country for over three decades; I would not change a single thing. I am most honoured to have served with, suffered with, and schemed with such an incredibly dynamic and diverse group of soldiers from all elements, ranks, trades, and nations. All of you have, in some way large or small, influenced who I have become, who I am. I am a better person, a better human being, due to the sum of our interactions and I will always be grateful for such meaningful and lasting relationships; thank you, all of you!”
Congratulatory messages and anecdotes can be sent to Capt Dave Poss at David.Poss@forces.gc.ca