The CSC Royal Roads Class of 1961 Reunion was held in conjunction with Royal Roads University’s Homecoming 2011 programme over the weekend 8-11 September.
Twenty two (22) of the original 65 Graduates participated over the weekend and were treated to 5 days of delightful sunshine and balmy Victoria temperatures.
The Saturday Ball on the Quarterdeck brought back memories of the dances hosted at CSC Royal Roads during our two years at the College.
Reunion events culminated at the Legacy Gardens where Class of 1961 donations to the Royal Roads University Foundation’s Military Heritage Fund enabled 70 granite pavers to be laid commemorating the 65 graduates plus 5 classmates of the original ROTP entry to CSC Royal Roads in the Fall of 1959.
An informal Meet & Greet kicked-off the events where classmates and their ladies gathered at the Gorge Vale Golf Club.
Excerpts from the address by Class of 1961, 5868 Lt Gen (ret) Scott Clements, the Vice Chair of the Foundation Advisory Council of RRU
Distinguished Guests, Ex cadets of the Royal Canadian Naval College, the Canadian Services College Royal Roads, the Royal Roads Military College, Alumni and Staff of the Royal Roads University, and all friends of this magic place that we all love so much.
As a cadet of the Class of 61, this is a special year for me, and my colleagues, It was not so long ago that I shared this podium with Royal Roads University President Cahoon and others in the commemoration of this symbolic and indeed, iconic, rededication of the Naval Mast at Royal Roads.
It was a very special day indeed – and here we are gathered again with the clear evidence that this project, envisioned by the Royal Naval College Class of 47, has been implemented and further improved so successfully. Among those that have contributed are the valuable and continued voluntary work from the local Naval Dockyard and the very generous financial contributions from the Royal Naval College Class of 43 to 45.
As the Vice Chair of Royal Roads University’s Foundation Advisory Council I would like to talk about some of the work that the Council has been doing for some years……… Our vision is very simple. We exist to Honour the Heritage, Maintain the Magic, and Facilitate the Future of Royal Roads….. Simple but powerful words that have guided every action of the foundation since we adopted them a few years ago.
My own Class of 61 is, of course at the milestone year of 50 years since graduation and as you can see we have raised enough funds to have 70 stones placed at the Mast honouring the 65 who graduated, plus five of hopefully many more that will be added over time.
So here we are today at the third annual event in the Legacy Garden, with the Naval Mast as its centre of gravity. Each year we see wonderful improvements. Quite simply I can think of no other more symbolic and visible heritage restoration than the naval mast to indicate to the 6000 ex cadets of the military era that the Royal Roads University is very serious about honouring its heritage.
What we have in front of us today is clearly a marriage of the past with the future. In addition to the Mast, the Legacy Garden has behind us the former Vice Commandant’s house that could well become a museum for Royal Roads history, and beside us these historic walls, which could well become, similar to a project just implemented at the Royal Military College, a place to honour those who have been associated with Royal Roads that have gone on to distinguish themselves as outstanding citizens of the world This whole area is therefore taking on a growing new significance for the property, blending history in a very appropriate manner with the new mission of the University.
What a marvellous Homecoming weekend this is. Thanks to all for contributing to make it so, and in particular thanks to all those who brought this magnificent mast back to a place of honour at Royal Roads and those who continue to develop this Legacy Garden.