We have contacted numerous ex-cadets from the fifties through to the new millennium and plan to feature them in the coming months to give readers a chance to catch up with names and faces from each of the respective CMCs.
by M0917 Dean Fleet
– H2951 Ramsey Withers (RRMC RMC 1952)
I served as a Signal Officer with 1 R 22e R in Korea and, when the battalion rotated home, I went to the 1st Commonwealth Division Battle School as an instructor. Returning home I went to Queen’s to obtain my electrical engineering degree, graduating in 1954 and taking a young lady away from the university as my wife. We have just celebrated our 55th anniversary.
Postings to regimental field duty at home and in Germany, Staff College and another tour in Germany followed before taking command of a Signal Squadron in Valcartier. I was then posted as the first staff officer appointed to Mobile Command Headquarters. Ottawa came next with CFHQ duty.
In 1970, on promotion to brigadier-general, I formed Canadian Forces Northern Region, in Yellowknife. Returning to Ottawa I had two appointments in NDHQ until 1976 when I went to command Canadian Forces Europe as a major-general. On promotion to lieutenant-general I was appointed VCDS and, in 1980, was promoted to general and appointed CDS.
Retiring in 1983, I was appointed Deputy Minister of Transport Canada. Retiring again, in 1988, I worked in the private sector for ten years. 1988 was also the year I submitted my report on the future of the College, which has been dubbed “the Withers Report”, to the Board of Governors.
Today my principal activity is as a volunteer interpreter at the Canadian War Museum with which I have been associated for the last twenty-one years. (‘volunteer interpreter: a.k.a. live artifact’)
As far as the rest of my class goes, instead of going to university 2861 Dan Loomis (RRMC RMC 1952) immediately signed up after the news broke, served with 1 RCR and was awarded the Military Cross. 2897 Herb Pitts (RRMC RMC 1952) was also awarded the MC when serving with 1 and 3 PPCLI. Our third MC was 2967 Chuck Carter (RMC 1952) who served with the RCE Squadron. 2973 Bob Bull (RRMC 1952) who served with B Squadron LdSH(RC) was awarded the Belgian Order of Leopold and Croix de Guerre. I have heard say that this makes 1952 the most decorated class per capita up to that time. Afghanistan may well change it.
Ramsey can be contacted at [email protected]
– 9224 Peter Davies (RMC 1972)
After graduation Peter was posted to the aircraft maintenance organization in CFB Trenton where he served in the servicing and snags and the line servicing sections. In 1974 he served for six months as the Aircraft Maintenance Officer with 116 Air Transport Unit in Cairo and Ismailia, Egypt. After returning from Egypt, he was posted to the Canadian Force Officer Candidate School in Chilliwack, British Columbia. While at Chilliwak, he served as a platoon instructor, platoon commander, company second in command, standards officer and the medical detachment commander.
Following Chilliwack, he was posted to the Directorate of Aerospace Engineering and Maintenance in NDHQ, serving as a Deputy Aircraft Engineering Officer for the CP 121 Tracker, CC 129 Dakota, and CC 132 Dash 7. During this tour in Ottawa, he returned a second time to 116 Air Transport Unit in Egypt. In 1981, Colonel Davies was posted to 5 Air Movements Unit in Lahr, West Germany where he served as the Aircraft Maintenance and Servicing Officer. Upon promotion to Major in 1983 he returned to NDHQ Ottawa as an Aircraft Engineering Officer for the CC137 Boeing 707, CC 132 Dash 7 and CC 144 Challenger aircraft. In 1985 he became the project manager for the CC/CT 142 Dash 8 project, which saw the introduction of both a transport and air navigator trainer version of the aircraft.
In 1989, he was selected for the Canadian Forces Staff College in Toronto. Following Staff College, he was posted as the Base Aircraft Engineering and Maintenance Officer in Winnipeg. In 1994, upon promotion to LCol, he was posted to Air Command Headquarters in Winnipeg as the Senior Staff Officer Aircraft Maintenance Policy where he served until his transfer from the Regular Force to the Supplementary Reserve in March 1996. He was then transferred to the Primary Reserve in November 1996, participating in the Air Force Command and Control Review Team at Air Command Headquarters.
In 1997, he moved to Kingston Ontario and began working in the Directorate of Air Review and Corporate Service in the Air Staff, NDHQ, Ottawa. He joined the Directorate of Air Reserves in January 2000. Since the summer of 2006, Colonel Davies has been the Director of Air Personnel Strategy.
Peter can be contacted at [email protected]
– 13934 Ken Rodzinyak (RMC 1983)
Following graduation Ken spent the next year at the Canadian Forces Air Navigation School where he received his NAV Wings. He then married his sweetheart from his hometown of Lethbridge, Mrs Angela Rodzinyak (nee Schmidt). The are about to celebrate their 25th anniversary and have been blessed with three wonderful daughters in 1987, 1990, and 1992. Over the course of his career, Ken has completed three operational tours and one operational/instructional tour with Maritime Patrol (Aurora) Squadrons, logging 4000 hrs of flight time in the process.
His international postings included a tour in Germany at 4 Wing HQ in Baden and a tour at North American Aerospace Defence Command in Colorado Springs, where he was a Missile Warning Center commander inside Cheyenne Mountain, a staff officer in Plans and Policy and a member of the Commander’s Action Group (writing correspondence and speeches for the NORAD Commander and Deputy Commander). He also had a posting at the recruiting centre in Kamloops, BC. In all, he has had the opportunity to command at the crew, flight and unit level. He is presently at the Canadian Forces Aerospace Warfare Center at the “Space” desk of the “Sense” domain of Concept and Doctrine Development Branch. He returned to RMC for his post-grad in Space Policy and Law at RMC and received his Masters Degree in 2003. He is also working towards a MSc at University of North Dakota in addition to the work at the International Space University. Oh, and as an aside to those who know him, yes, he is still juggling.
“When I joined and decided to go to RMC I made a personal pact with myself that I would get out as soon as I stopped enjoying it – I have just completed 30 years and am still loving it!”
Ken can be contacted at [email protected]