MWO Darrell C Leighton, CD
MWO Leighton will be retiring from the CAF on 10 Dec 2016 after 43+ years of loyal and dedicated service to Canada, the Canadian Armed Forces and the Canadian Military Engineers.
MWO Leighton was born in Halifax and raised near Windsor, NS. On the19th of September 1973, while in high school, he joined the Reserve Infantry, B Coy West Nova Scotia Regiment, where he attaining the rank of WO and Reserve MWO qualification. In July 1984, Darrell took a component transfer to the Regular Force and was posted to 1 PPCLI Calgary. After having his fill of infantry training, exercises and RVs, he sought a LOTREP in the fall of 1988 to the Construction Engineer Branch as a MOC 621 Refrigeration Mechanical Tech. (Later became MOC 641 then MOSID 00301).
He graduated as a Refrigeration Mechanical Technician in June 1989 and he was then posted to CFB Halifax for his apprentice training. In 1993, he was posting to CFS Debert, NS to NATO Satellite Ground Terminal F18 Folly Lake. This five-year Priority 1 NATO posting which finished with a promotion to MCpl spring of 1998, he was posted to the new CFSME Gagetown as a Refrigeration Mechanical Systems Instructor.
In January 2003 Darrell was promoted to Sergeant at CFSME. In July 2004 he was posted to 1 ESU Moncton, NB. This two-year posting came with three TAVs to Afghanistan, July- August 2005 to the PRT Nathan Smith, then KAF from December 2005-January 2006 and to KAF again from May –July 2006. These TAVs were for planning and improving CAF infrastructure throughout the AOR.
After returning to Canada, Darrell was promoted to WO in August 2006 to CE Supt and was posted to CFB Greenwood NS as CE Production Officer for three years. While in Greenwood he completed a tour to CFS Alert as “Boss Beaver” from January to April 2008; then returned as the CE Utilities Officer.
In June 2009, he was promoted to MWO and posted to the Reserve 144 Construction Engineer Flight, Pictou NS as the Flight MWO. This three-year posting came with eight months of training with 2 Combat Engineer Regiment and a seven-month deployment from April to Nov 2010 to Kandahar Air Field on TF 1-10 in the 2 CER Engineer Support Squadron (ESS).
Finally, in July 2012, he was rewarded with a Rocky Mountain Tour to Edmonton, Alberta and 1 Combat Engineer Regiment, Construction Troop. This posting and position was readily accepted. Being back to the Army was exciting at first but quickly proved his age, vulnerabilities, and limitations.
After 10 + years Reserve infantry, four more years as a Patricia and 28+ years as a Construction Engineer and with CRA 60 deadline approaching; it is time to take off the boots. Also, Suzanne, his wife of 38+ years said after eight postings with seven home renos completed, it is time to find their forever home and settle down near hometown Windsor, NS.
“I have thoroughly enjoyed my time in the Canadian Armed Forces Reserves and Regular Force. I have had all very good postings, did some very interesting things, visited a few very interesting places and worked with a lot of very good people. I am leaving the CAF with many friends, good memories and no regrets. For those who remain serving, I thank you all for your support over the years and wish you all best wishes in your future endeavours. I hope my small part was a positive influence for members of the Construction Engineer trades, to other members of the CAF and the citizens of Canada.”
Once a Patricia, Always a Patricia
A Depart with Dignity Ceremony will take place at the WO & Sgts Mess in CFB Edmonton, AB, on 02 Dec 2016. Attendees are requested to advise the OPI of their planned attendance NLT 18 Nov 2016. Anecdotes or retirement wishes may be sent to the OPI by e-mail.OPI: MWO Paul Mehlitz, email at firstname.lastname@example.org