Who said What…When?

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“I do not think the Royal Military College can be fully appreciated until some years after one has left. While Cadet discipline seems often irksome, studies and examinations a trial, and extra drill the invention of the Evil One, it is only later in life one fully realizes how invaluable it has all been, and that the happiest time in one’s life was spent as a Cadet there.”

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Message From The Commandant – 1972 Review…

In last year’s Review, my first as Commandant, I began my remarks by referring to Sir Arthur Currie’s foreword to the first RMC Review. In this year’s edition, I am going to take my theme from the second volume of the Review and quote from the foreword by No. 246 Lieutenant-General Sir. H.E. Burstall in which he wrote:

“I do not think the Royal Military College can be fully appreciated until some years after one has left. While Cadet discipline seems often irksome, studies and examinations a trial, and extra drill the invention of the Evil One, it is only later in life one fully realizes how invaluable it has all been, and that the happiest time in one’s life was spent as a Cadet there.”

This past year I attended Ex-Cadet Reunions in Halifax and Vancouver and at both was pleased to hear from a significant number of ex-cadets how much they appreciated what the Military College system had done for them. And they meant the system, not just the education, the sports, the summer training, or the military organization with its insistence on accepting responsibility and demonstrating leadership. It is the sum of all of these that makes the RMC graduate what he is.

One of the most important lessons taught here is self-discipline and it was the value of this to which most of these ex-cadets referred. I am sure that all of you in the graduating class have heard me say on the subject that it is an essential part of the preparation of an officer that he learn to make himself do what he doesn’t want to do when he doesn’t want to do it. I believe this is General Burstall’s message and I have no doubt that sooner or later most of you will agree that there is much merit in it. It may be a little while before you can look upon your time here as your “happy, carefree, college days” but you will be surprised to learn how quickly you will mellow and look back to RMC with pride and affection.

Good luck and good soldiering to all of you in the graduating class.

W.K. Lye

Brigadier-General

Commandant

 More on LGen Sir HE Burstall KCB, KCMG (1870-1945) Here…