• Home
  • /
  • m. Extra Innings
  • /
  • Catching up with ‘recent’ activities that were supported by donors to the Foundation

Catching up with ‘recent’ activities that were supported by donors to the Foundation

The Foundation in action…

What is this Cadet Wing Coming Too? Cadets travel 6 hours to climb ice walls

Article by: 27549 NCdt Breauna Miller

Dangling from an ice wall seventy-five feet in the air is a great way to start your day, and perhaps a little terrifying if you are afraid of heights!

Nine Naval and Officer Cadets and one staff member from the RMC’s expedition club spent two days on the outskirts of Quebec City challenging the ice walls at Chute Kabir Kouba and Chute Montmorency falls.

This was an exceptional way to spend some of reading week.

A few weeks prior to departing, Expedition Club President Eli Dingwall-McAlpine, had organized two tutorial sessions with the Rock Climbing Club in order to master belaying skills which would be needed to safely climb the falls in Quebec.

These learning sessions included practicing several different knots and becoming familiar with the different belaying devices, and ultimately meant club members could quickly get to the business of climbing when they arrived on site.

On the first Monday of reading week, the ten selected members of the Expedition Club piled into two vans (with most of their kit) and made the six-hour journey to Quebec City.

After arriving at the Naval Reserve unit HMCS Montcalm, the team settled into their rooms, and organized their gear in preparation for the exciting days ahead.

The safety briefing that evening was important as the team would be using crampons and ice picks. This in of itself was not too concerning, however, when considering that most Cadets affiliated with the Army or Airforce, both of which have a propensity for inadvertently hurting themselves while using sharp objects, the safety briefing became extremely important.

The next day, after an early rise, delicious breakfast, a quick stop to the outdoor store to buy two safety ropes (to replace the ones inadvertently left in Kingston), and a short 20-minute drive, the team arrived at the first climbing site – Chute Kabir Kouba.

Club members quickly dressed and dawned their climbing equipment – the excitement/terror was palpable.

The first challenge of the day was getting from the top of the falls to the bottom of the falls. Fortunately there were stairs leading down, unfortunately they were covered with 5 feet of snow which led to what can be best described as “butt sliding”.

At this point however, the safety lines had already been rigged and inspected by the very knowledgeable and extremely capable, MWO Corneau.

The hour had finally come, and it was time for the adventure to begin. Despite the less than ideal weather, each cadet took turns climbing and belaying, and often times there was a friendly competition to see who could climb the ice wall the fastest.

It can be rather unnerving climbing an ice wall that in warmer months is actually a waterfall. In fact, not all of the water freezes, and on one of the ice walls to the right, there was a waterfall still flowing with all its might – a waterfall thirty meters higher than the great Niagara Falls and no less capable of spraying an icy mist – which hardy Expedition Club members simply refer to as “refreshing”.

This site was called Chute Montmorency and as team members climbed this eighty-meter ice wall, they could hear water flowing underneath. Was this ice wall actually free standing? Could the team trust the wall not to collapse? These are the head games the ice wall plays, and for many climbers certain bodily functions are triggered – future climbers are cautioned to avoid the yellow stained section of Chute Montmorency!

The team’s safety was really never a concern, they had the opportunity to work with a very knowledgeable, experienced, kind, and entertaining guide who helped each and every member gain skills which they would not have acquired otherwise. The guide put the teams to the test several times, encouraging them to start by climbing the wall using crampons only, then with one ice pick, and finally with all equipment on the mostly challenging vertical climbs.

This method allowed the climbers to understand the brunt of climbing is using their legs and not their arms. Although some members were more comfortable at sea-level, as they conquered their fear of the height and started trusting their equipment, the calls for “break” (AKA “I am freaking out up here, my legs have turned to jelly, and I need to repel down) became less and less.

The day at Chute Montmorency ended with each cadet having their own personalized photoshoot at height with the waterfall in the background – how could they not!

As each day came to a close, the team journeyed back to the quarters at Montcalm, took a quick rejuvenating nap, and collectively decided where to go for dinner.

During each meal, MWO Corneau communicated to the French waitress that each member was to practice ordering in French. Many laughs were had, but it was a truly a great way to immerse in the Québécois culture and to put the team’s French language knowledge to use in a francophone city.

Each night after dinner, the group toured old Quebec City learning about its history, stopping at shops, and exploring the nightlife.

After two full days of climbing and repelling amazing ice walls with amazing people, the time had come for the team to pile back into the vans (with ALL their kit) and head back to Kingston. Each member of the Expedition Club was exhausted but thrilled to have had the opportunity to practice team-building skills, bilingualism, and trust in one another.

The trip, by all accounts was a great success and a huge thank you must go to the donors to the funds managed and administered by the RMC Foundation. Without this donor support this great experience would not have been possible.

If ever you have the opportunity to ice climb, take it! It won’t be an experience you will quickly forget.

More pictures can be found in their Drop Box




Caption: (from left to right) Jonathan Bell (Superior Delegate award in the Nuclear Planning Group); Malcolm Nettie (Distinguished Delegate in the Political Committee); Kyle Canning (Distinguished Delegate in the Military Committee); Hannah Hollander (Superior Delegate in the Emerging Security Challenges); Phillip Pageot (the page holding the team award); Cameron Walker (Distinguised Delegate in the Partnerships and Cooperative Securities Committee); and Anna Dillman (Distinguished Delegate in the North Atlantic Council)

Soft Power Pays Off: RMC Team wins ‘Distinguished Delegation’ Award in Model NATO Competition

Article by Anna Dillman

Readers Note: Model NATO is an academic simulation where students learn about diplomacy, leadership, and NATO by taking on the role of a NATO member and facilitating discussions that would take place in NATO. The point of the competition is to understand policies and world affairs by finding ways to reach consensus within the alliance

Washington D.C. – During the reading week, RMC sent a team to compete in Howard university’s 33rd International Model NATO competition; and, while the team may have been the smallest in attendance, they showed they know how to pack a punch. During the four-day conference, the team represented the United Kingdom and debated various NATO topics within six committees: The North Atlantic Council; Military Committee; Political Committee; Nuclear Planning Group; Emerging Security Challenges Committee; and Partnerships and Cooperative Security Committee. Through the teams understanding of military operation and alliance; ability to lead the discussion; generation of solutions to NATO; and facilitation of diplomacy among other delegates, the team won the overall ‘Distinguished Delegation’ Award. The entire team also won individual awards in each committee. Officer Cadets Hannah Hollander and Jonathan Bell walked away with ‘Superior Delegate’ awards and Officer Cadets Anna Dillman, Kyle Canning, Malcolm Nettie, and Cameron Walker won ‘Distinguished Delegate’ Awards (Figure 1). Considering that RMC was one of 20 universities in attendance and that each committee had over thirty delegates debating, the receipt of the individual and team awards is a testament to the advantage RMC brings to this competition.

Since 2009, RMC’s team has won top delegate and distinguished delegate awards, and the success of the team is contributed to the unique brand and set of skills that RMC gives its young aspiring officers. It was clear in the competition that RMC students were well versed in military affairs and strategy, and oftentimes discussion and policy papers were facilitating and directed by RMC students. Furthermore, the deportment, presentation, and public speaking abilities of the RMC students stood out amongst other competitive teams and showed that RMC students understand the importance of these soft skills in leadership abilities. The team success was a mix of their personal commitment, support of academics, and support of RMC.

It must be noted that the RMC Foundation has provided over $50,000 to support the team, to attend these type of events, over the past ten years, thanks to the generous support from donors.

Figure 2 – team picture in the Ambassador of the United Kingdom’s home

Figure 3 – Team at the foot of the Ambassadors garden and home


Interview with Mr. Ian Mottershead

By 27303 OCdt (IV) Elizabeth Han

Mrs and Mr Ian Mottershead

Elizabeth Han

The Battlefield Tour 2018 was an unbelievable, once in a lifetime, experience. This was all thanks to the administrative support of the RMC Foundation and to Mr and Mrs Ian Mottershead who are two of the main donors for this trip. This year, the couple were part of the tour and I took this opportunity to ask Mr. Mottershead a few questions about the importance of such a trip for officer cadets like me.

Born in January of 1941 in North Wales, United Kingdom, Mr. Mottershead had a first-hand experience of what life was like during the Second World War. During my interview he stated that the first time that he saw light at night was when he was four years old in 1945 on Victory in Europe (VE) Day. During the war his family had to keep the lights shut off so that their houses wouldn’t be bombed. After the war ended, he went to a boarding school for 8 years and his family decided to immigrate to Vancouver, BC, Canada when he was 15 in 1955. From there, he received his high school degree. After finishing Grade 13, he didn’t know what he was going to do; ultimately, he decided to join the navy. This began his career in the military.

He started out studying science at Royal Roads University in Victoria, BC. After two years, he transferred to RMC—as most of the other graduates from Royal Roads did—and decided to pursue his studies in the arts where he studied economics, history, and political science. He graduated in the spring of 1962 and later that same year he took part in the blockade set up by the British, American and Canadian forces during the Cuban missile crisis. Their main goal was to prevent the missiles from being delivered to Cuba and also to keep Russian craft out of the way. After his obligatory service in 1966, Mr. Mottershead left the Navy and decided to go back to school at Queens University to do a Master of Business Administration (MBA). This started his career path towards investment management, which soon led him to great success in the business world.

Presently, Mr. Mottershead is happily retired and travels with his wife three months of the year. This year, they, decided to come on the Battlefield Tour with us—Mr. Mottershead for the second time in 5 years and the first time for Mrs. Mottershead. They both enjoyed the trip and believed that the Battlefield Tour is an important experience, which allows officer cadets to learn about leadership in the “fog of war” and to look at the history of those who came before us; particularly in regards to former RMC graduates.

As a former naval officer himself, he said, “I thought it was terribly important that cadets know this background and know that RMC cadets and the Canadian military in general were involved —at Passchendaele, Beaumont Hamel and the Newfoundland Regiment, the involvement of Canadians and World War Two like our story in Dieppe.”

When Mr. Mottershead talks to his classmates about what he is doing, there is great enthusiasm as they understand the importance of this trip—”28 cadets each year get to go and do the Battlefield Tour, get to see what we have done, learn about the ‘fog of war’ and the confusion of arrays and the leadership that is required to produce the success in this type of environment.”

In the last few years, he has talked to three commandants and various people in the RMC Foundation to make sure that the Battlefield Tour is restored and more importantly, to make sure that it continues. Mr. Mottershead stated, “This year, we brought on 5 history professors so that we can provide continuity with the tour. What I am focusing on now is arranging for financial security for the tour, so that many more cadets will be able to have the opportunity to keep learning about Canada’s history and leadership.”

We would like to thank the RMC Foundation for their continuous administative support for the Battlefield Tour. Most notably, we would like to thank Mr. Mottershead for this interview and for believing in the importance of such an experience for the cadets.


2018 Battlefield Tour

Article submitted by the RMC Foundation

When the young men and women of Canada join the Canadian Armed Forces and come to RMC they learn about the rites and traditions that were born in a succession of conflicts and wars. They learn the meaning of the empty chair at mess dinners, and the toast to the fallen. However, it is very hard for someone who has not had to go through a battle and experience loss to understand their meaning.

Since 2009 the RMC Foundation, through the generosity of our donors, has provided in excess of $400,000 to fund the annual European Battlefield Tour. This eight day exploration and history of Canadian Battlefields in France and Belgium is guided by professors from the Royal Military College who specialize in the history of the two World Wars. Officer Cadets have the opportunity to visit battle sites at such hallowed places as Ypres, the Somme, Beaumont Hamel, Vimy, Amiens, Dieppe, JUNO Beach, Caen and the Falaise Gap. The Battlefield Tour also includes visits to Canadian and Commonwealth war cemeteries.

From 17 – 25 February Cadets from the Royal Military College walked the beaches of Dieppe and Normandy, travelled to Beaumont-Hamel, Passchendaele, Saint-Julien, over a dozen cemeteries and memorials and tens of thousands of graves. This trip allowed our future Officers to gain a better understanding of the motto Truth, Duty, Valour and the true sacrifice of war. Regardless of what else the Officer Cadets did during their time at RMC, many considered this to be their most significant activity to date and shall not forget the lessons they have learned while on their journeys.

The RMC Foundation wishes to acknowledge the generous support of 5586 Ian Mottershead and 5507 Jack Peltier from the Class of 1962, who combined, have contributed over $250,000 in support of the Annual European Battlefield Tour.

Below are testimonials from previous tour participants :

“. . . the highlight of my time at RMC . . . I have done numerous other battlefield tours and studies . . . but none have compared to the RMC experience . . . to be in a cemetery where thousands of young Canadians were laid to rest humbled me, that memory remains a formative part of my development as a leader . . .” – 22973 Jaime Phillips (2004)

“. . . it is more than a tour it is a pilgrimage for aspiring warriors . . I am heartened to see that it has carried on . . . it is a stark reminder of the demands of the profession of arms: leadership, competence, and courage . . . for me it was the highlight of my entire experience at the College, and one which I reflect upon often, even now, years later.” – 23254 Geoff Tyrell (2005)

“While away on numerous deployments since graduation, memories of the tour keep me humble . . I know that my efforts pale in comparison to those who are buried in the Canadian cemeteries in Europe . . . I hope that cadets can continue to participate in this incredible and life changing trip for years to come, I know they will find it as rewarding as I did.” – 24125 David Kay (2009)

“ The most significant event in my time at RMC was, without any doubt – the tour. . . while deployed, the experience and knowledge I gained there drove me every day . . .I realized for the first time the enormity of my personal commitment to the profession of arms . . . it was the beginning of really understanding ‘lest we forget’ ” – 24618 François Hachez (2010)

Video Links:

Video Courcelette: https://youtu.be/hIpKCXeGo9U

Video Beaumont-Hamel: https://youtu.be/AkO3jL0M8Ts

Video Cemetery: https://youtu.be/5kbWY88ghYg

*Video Cemetery: https://youtu.be/Ss_4agxRCGo

Video Cemetery FR: https://youtu.be/WTHYKlVgj9A

Video Beaches: https://youtu.be/_Jr7rswN8Gk

Video Belgium: https://youtu.be/L2CKDMzXAjY


Visite des champs de bataille 2018

Lorsque les jeunes Canadiens et Canadiennes membres des Forces armées canadiennes sont admis au Collège militaire royal (CMR), ils apprennent les rituels et les traditions qui découlent d’une succession de conflits et de guerres. On leur enseigne notamment le sens de la chaise vide et du toast aux camarades tombés au champ d’honneur lors des dîners régimentaires. Il est toutefois très difficile pour une personne qui n’a jamais connu la guerre et qui n’a jamais perdu d’être cher de comprendre ces symboles.

Grâce à la générosité de ses donateurs, la Fondation des CMR a investi plus de 400 000 $ dans la visite annuelle des champs de bataille européens depuis 2009. Durant cette expédition de huit jours, des professeurs du CMR spécialisés dans l’histoire des deux Guerres mondiales présentent l’histoire des champs de bataille canadiens en France et en Belgique. Les élèves-officiers visitent des champs de bataille sacrés, comme ceux d’Ypres, de la Somme, de Beaumont-Hamel, de Vimy, d’Amiens, de Dieppe, de Juno Beach, de Caen et de Falaise. Le voyage comprend aussi une tournée des cimetières de guerre du Canada et du Commonwealth.

Du 17 au 25 février, les élèves-officiers du CMR ont marché sur les plages de Dieppe et de Normandie, foulé le sol de Beaumont-Hamel, de Passchendaele et de Saint-Julien et visité une dizaine de cimetières et monuments commémoratifs pour se recueillir près de dizaines de milliers de tombes. Ce voyage à permis à de futurs officiers de mieux comprendre la devise Vérité, devoir, vaillance ainsi que le véritable sacrifice de la guerre. Plusieurs élèves-officiers considèrent ce voyage comme l’activité la plus significative à laquelle ils ont participé durant leur formation au CMR et ils n’oublieront jamais les leçons qu’ils y ont apprises.

La Fondation des CMR souhaite remercier 5586 Ian Mottershead et 5507 Jack Peltier de la promotion de 1962 pour leur généreux soutien. Ensemble, ils ont offert plus de 250 000 $ pour appuyer la visite annuelle des champs de bataille européens.

Voici des témoignages de participants à la visite :

« […] un des moments charnières de ma formation au Collège. […] J’ai participé à de nombreuses études et visites de champs de bataille, […] mais aucune expérience ne se compare à celle qui m’a été offerte par le CMR. […] Ce fut un honneur pour moi de visiter un cimetière où reposent des milliers de jeunes Canadiens. Ce souvenir a joué un rôle essentiel dans ma formation de leader […] » – 22973 Jaime Phillips (2004)

« […] Il ne s’agit pas d’une simple visite, mais d’un pèlerinage pour guerriers en devenir. […] Je suis heureux de constater que la tradition se poursuit. […] Le voyage nous rappelle sans ambages les exigences du métier des armes : leadership, compétence et courage. […] Je peux affirmer que ce fut le moment charnière de ma formation au Collège et que j’y pense encore souvent des années plus tard. » – 23254 Geoff Tyrell (2005)

« J’ai été déployé plusieurs fois depuis la remise de mon diplôme, et ce sont toujours les souvenirs de cette visite qui me ramènent sur terre. […] Je sais que mes efforts n’ont rien à voir avec celui des Canadiens qui ont été enterrés en Europe. […] J’espère que les officiers continueront à participer à ce voyage et qu’ils en reviendront eux aussi transformés. » – 24125 David Kay (2009)

« L’activité la plus marquante de ma formation au CMR est sans aucun doute la visite des champs de bataille. […] L’expérience et les connaissances acquises lors de ce voyage m’ont accompagné pendant mes déploiements. […] C’est pendant ces quelques jours que j’ai compris pour la première fois toute l’importance de mon engagement personnel envers la profession des armes…] et le sens de l’expression Nous nous souviendrons d’eux. » – François Hachez 24618 (2010)

Video Links:

Video Courcelette: https://youtu.be/hIpKCXeGo9U

Video Beaumont-Hamel: https://youtu.be/AkO3jL0M8Ts

Video Cemetery: https://youtu.be/5kbWY88ghYg

*Video Cemetery: https://youtu.be/Ss_4agxRCGo

Video Cemetery FR: https://youtu.be/WTHYKlVgj9A

Video Beaches: https://youtu.be/_Jr7rswN8Gk

Video Belgium: https://youtu.be/L2CKDMzXAjY


RMC audience at 2018 Kingston Film Fest

27472  OCdt (IV) Eliza Bruce

This past weekend, a contingent of 15 Officer Cadets along with Major Belyea and Dr. Sarah Johnson attended the annual Kingston Canadian Film Festival and had extremely positive experiences and takeaways as a result.

RMC has been doing this for a couple years now.  Thanks to the incredible support and funding from donors to the RMC Foundation; which covered the costs for the weekend passes.  This allowed us to view as many films, as possible, and to attend extra sessions throughout the downtown core to meet with the film festival folk and guest appearances as well as directors, film editors, script-writers, and even actors!

I honestly did not have a good picture of the Canadian film industry before this event, and was completely blown away by the professional, meaningful, sometimes hilarious, sometimes sobering, presentation of the films we took in over the weekend.  All of which were filmed beautifully against the backdrops of Canada’s most picturesque and also obscure landscapes and urban centres, featuring well-known actors and up-coming talents.

Being able to hear the stories of the directors after every film helped us piece together the relevance of each film within the larger context of Canadian society, and in some cases the military.

We viewed films in almost every genre, from documentary, drama, comedy, tragedy, thriller, and social study.

Some notable films that left indelible impressions on us were Ninth Floor, about a little-known history in 1969 that involved a protest university students in Montreal standing up against racism towards black immigrants, that was a key event towards the development of Canada’s multicultural policy.

Two films that captured the realities of winter prairie life and functioning with cultural differences within the family unit were respectively Never Steady, Never Still, and Meditation Park.

Another film from which I learned a great deal was Our People Will Be Healed, which illuminated a great deal about what is being done to increase and improve First Nations communities and early/high school education systems, and how cultural practices are preserved at the youngest levels.

The final film we watched as a group was Clearing the Way, about Canadian combat engineers in Kandahar during 2006, which was one of the most vivid lessons in military combat realities, and provided a very truthful and impactful presentation of what life was like for the troops facing the horrors and joys of each day in an unpredictable and chaotic war zone while skillfully and professionally completing their jobs.

I, and my classmates who joined me, are very grateful for this opportunity to experience a side of Canadian culture to which we were previously unexposed. Such masterful storytellers make me proud to be both Canadian and military.


Rowing at Ergometer Championships in ‘The Garden City’

27918 OCdt Jack Whitford

On the Friday afternoon of March 2nd 2018, the Royal Military College Rowing Club headed out for our final competition of the 2017/18 season. The Ontario Ergometer Championships was held at Ridley College in St. Catharines. A lengthy drive from the peninsula in Kingston, the trip was graciously funded by the RMC Foundation and proved to be an excellent opportunity for RMC rowers to show their stuff on the ergs. Accompanying us on our journey was Coach Stephen Lutz, who spent his weekend supporting our rowers with vital race planning advice and loud encouragement from the sidelines.

We competed on Saturday afternoon after a solid night’s rest, and represented RMC well on the scoreboard. Notable top ten finishes in the 2000m race include team captain Drew Spinney (7th place in lightweight men’s), Liam Cooke (5th place in heavyweight men’s), Chrystelle Cloutier (5th place in lightweight women’s), and Brandon Tempest (9th place in lightweight men’s). Cloutier and Cooke also snagged personal best times in this event, alongside other RMC athletes Liam Vickers, Sean Midgely, Timothy Villegas, Samuel Kim, Jonas Cancino, Celine Faucher, and team 2IC Lewis MacPherson.

The Rowing Team would like to thank the RMC Foundation for their continued support and for funding this competition. Without their generosity, attending the Ontario Ergometer Championships would not have been possible.



One Comment