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26188 Steven Trainor: Final ACSO to Train as a Sea King TACCO

“I decided to enlist as an NCM and work for a while first”

Article by 25366 Anna-Michelle Shewfelt

26188 Steven Trainor (RMC 2013) took a roundabout route coming to military college. “I was born in North York, Ontario, but grew up all over Ontario, PEI, BC, and Alberta. I graduated from St. Francis High School in Calgary, AB, in 2000, and I had considered applying to military college while I was there,” he explained, “but I decided to enlist as an NCM and work for a while (maybe a year or two). Ten years later, I actually applied.”

So what finally made him take the leap? “While I was teaching BMQ/BMOQ as a Master Seaman, I decided it was time to finally do my degree and make the career change. I considered civi-u but, with input from numerous colleagues and family, I decided that attending RMC was worthwhile.” He entered RMC in 2010 and graduated in 2013.

Like many ex-Cadets, he had his share of good times and challenges. “Being separated from my spouse for the entirety of my time there was very hard,” he recalled. “That, coupled with the multiple workloads and daily demands was a big challenge.” Skylarks are one aspect of the college experience he recalls with a smile. “The spirit associated with skylarking, regardless of the actual skylark, was just fun and ambitious and really teamwork dependent. I’m sure many people didn’t realize it then but the skylarks were probably the best example of the Military Planning Process that we witnessed while there,” he said. “In addition, varsity fencing also provided the opportunities to fence against Olympians from all over the world.”

For Steven Trainor, the staff at RMC helped to make the experience what it was. “Dr. Patterson was one of my most frequent Economics professors. He had a knack for making very difficult concepts seem crystal clear…until he left the room and we had to complete an assignment. Then it was impossible until we got him back to re-explain it!” He went on, “My French teachers Marie-France Nadeau and Martine Thiverge-Bournival were a welcome relief from the daily tasks. They were very passionate, patient and encouraging. They were instrumental for me in gaining my second language profile.”

He has served since graduation as an Air Combat Systems Officer (ACSO) (formerly Air Nav). Immediately following grad he attended the fourteen month long Nav School at 402 Sqn in Winnipeg. “I was then posted to 443 (MH) Sqn in Victoria, BC, and I was the final ACSO to train as a Sea King Tactical Coordinating Officer (TACCO). Following my Sea King training I deployed to sea onboard HMCS WINNIPEG for OP PROJECTION in 2017 Indo-Asia Pacific. Then in 2018, I deployed aboard HMCS ST. JOHNS to the North and Baltic Seas for OP REASSURANCE.”

And what does he look back on the most? “My highlights so far include flying around the world, working with other militaries and with our incredible professionals within the RCAF. It was also a highlight being one of the very few to retire the Sea King from 55 years of faithful service.”

Despite being on the other side of the country in Victoria, BC, Steven does his best to stay connected with the College. “I attended my 5 year reunion this summer,” he explained. “Not many people made it from outside of Ontario or Quebec, but out of my classmates at 443 Sqn, almost everyone made the trip. I see many people from school every time I go to the base or the hospital, every time I step foot on a ship, every time I travel for work… sometimes I run into classmates at the airport. It is always a welcome sight to see a familiar face in an unfamiliar environment.”