Message from the Commanding Officer LCol Paul d’Orsonnens June 2017

As we approach June and our annual unit reunion day with sports and a great BBQ prepared by OC Admin Coy and team, all Brocks should be busy with activities and tasks that will advance them in their qualifications or prepare them for promotion, others will train in sports activities to represent the unit in upcoming events that the unit will sponsor. Summer is also the time when people important to the Brocks family continue on with new challenges in their careers.

Departure of FTUC staff: Capt Richard Law, WO Tal Shlakat and Sgt (soon WO) Sonia Shlakat are leaving this summer, and as much as we regret seeing them move on to new challenges, we are very thankful for their complete commitment to the unit and to its members for the past 3 years. We have a debt of gratitude for the many many hours spent assisting, mentoring, enabling, and overseeing the operations, the training, the pay and administration and preserving our historical heritage at the unit. Though they leave for Gagetown and Connaught, they aren’t leaving the Rifles family. There are many stories to recall: How can we forget the valiant attempts around midnight to become buglers with an old beaten bugle found in the Mess or WO Shlakat looking at Sgt Hopper, a hatchet buried in his leg, and calmly say that in wasn’t necessary to damage those perfectly good rain pants, but no one will ever forget the evil eye received from our CC when told that an admin form or claim didn’t seem complete. On behalf of the Regiment, many thanks for a great job very well done and very much appreciated. Thankfully, we have some survivors, and MCpl Tim Perry and crew remain at unit to keep the solid work going that’s been done up to now.

Op LENTUS: Congratulations to our Rifles who got Army wide press coverage on Army News! MCpl Moss distinguished himself for the sturdy leadership he demonstrated, by doing what he does best and getting committed as a Rifleman. All Brocks were very appreciated by the Platoon OC and 2IC for being trustworthy, dependable, resourceful, having a positive mental attitude and for getting the job done. Congrats all!

Officers 151st Mess Diner: The evening was a resounding success, with the Guest of Honour, the Deputy Commander of the Army being impressed by the strength and character of our unit and its strong links to the City and the community. Many military and civilian guests were present, and the unit thanks them for attending the dinner and representing The Brockville Rifles to our very senior Army leader. A special mention was made to our Worship Mayor Henderson, whom we are very appreciative of his continued support to the unit. The presence of the Mayor and our Chief of Police was noted by MGen Turenne as a testimony to the important link the unit has with the City of Brockville and adjoining counties.

The phase 1 of renovations ended the day before the Mess Diner, thanks to MCpl Justin Perry, Cpls Dale Cross and Dillon Fournier in the RQ and our FTUC staff that hounded the project manager. Well done for tracking the work being done and pointing out what needed to be changed or fixed. Our next challenge is ensuring that Phase 2 funding is authorized to the Rifles and further renovations to the interior of the building are carried out so that our Armory, built in 1900, will remain functional and serve us well for at least another 100 years. That task requires an engineer who understands those strange project drawings and 2Lt Andrew Melchers has volunteered, though he doesn’t know it yet.

These renovations have created an opportunity to rethink the internal use of the Armoury, to optimize our space for the use by our Rifles and for our training mission. As your CO, I received proposals to move the Messes and relocate the Museum collection, and there is very strong merit to the proposals, most notably because it came from the members of the unit. My thanks to those who gave their opinions and comments, this demonstrates your interest in protecting our unit and its glorious past, and making our present day events more significant.

Recently, our Historical heritage collection became the center of attention with the research done by Capt Law who discovered the story behind our most amazing set of medals in the collection. Private Torrance Glazier, 41st Battalion (Brockville Rifles), must certainly be the most decorated Rifleman from the unit, having been in four armed conflict from the Red River, the Fenian Raids in 1870 to the Boer war in 1899, to The First World War! Private Glazier will now be better remembered, because he did then exactly what Sgt Hopper, MCpl Jackson, Cpls Zeiman, Blair-Beveridge, and Mensen did recently in Afghanistan… do our duty as Riflemen!

Recruitment by our Sgt Hopper is going well with 20 recruits, which means BMQ courses will be opened and BMQ instructor positions will become available for those qualified for these positions.

Next year we are focusing on operations training in the defense sight your heavy machine guns and anti-armor weapons, ensure covering fire overlaps, then sight your trenches and dig in to protect yourselves, set up obstacles and wire entanglement ahead of our position to break the enemy assault, and then start doing what infantry do best, go on patrol. I look forward to joining your patrols and seeing everyone focused on the ops task!

Deployments: We are still waiting for further details following the Canadian Army announcement to send a platoon of reservists to various foreign locations. This will be an excellent opportunity to have our Brocks be part of missions and to experience training with a very realistic focus. This is the reason to do well on your RST and summer qualifications, so that you can be the first to be selected as part of that mission, and make the unit proud!

During the summer, those available to work at the unit will be training to meet the challenge that the Brocks received from the Highlanders…So at the Highland Games on first long weekend in Aug, we will have a Rifles tug-of-war team that RSM Gagnon will coach, while Cpls Zeiman and Perry have the task of getting us a regimental team uniform! (and yes.. no kilts!).

Sports is important in the Army and for our mental resilience (as is sleep and proper meals), and for that reason, RSM and I are fully supportive of our Brockville Rifles Army Run team! A team jersey will be chosen, and a training plan developed with PSP folks, so that we can all safely train for the 10KM, or for those who want to run with your CO, the half-marathon.

Our recent Thursday evening in the Mess became memorable as we watched the Sens battle the Pens in 2nd OT for the Conference title. As a Sens fan, I really appreciated that moment, even though certain Habs fans are in denial and continue to believed it’s all part of a conspiracy against Carry Price.

Summer RST is launched and many of you are already committed to courses or tasks. Do well, keep your powder dry, learn your fieldcraft, and master your musketry learn from others, and stay away from those who waste your time the Army needs smart soldiers to train the several thousands of new recruits that we need, so I expect our unit to continue to be among the best do it because of your commitment to the unit, to your colleagues and to yourself.

The RSM and I look forward to seeing you at the unit BBQ for a chance to share in more regimental good times. The following Thursday will be our last time together for some of us, so we say thanks to those who are leaving, such as Cpl Fournier who shared his Int war stories with us throughout the year and more importantly gave grief to the other teams during the Hockey tournament. Keep checking the FB page for unit news, and don’t hesitate to send us those memorable funny stories from your summer that we can share on the page.

So, again, keep your powder dry, your head up, be smart about how you act, remember your OPERATION HONOR awareness and Bystander Intervention training, and be smart about how you train, so that we can all RV back together in September.

SEMPER PARATUS

LCol Paul d’Orsonnens MSM, CD
Commanding Officer
The Brockville Rifles

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Message du Commandant
LCol Paul d’Orsonnens
Juin 2017

Alors que nous nous approchons de notre réunion annuel et BBQ de juin, nos membres de l’unité sont soit occupés avec leurs taches d’été pour atteindre leurs promotions ou de s’entrainer au sport pour représenter l’unité.

L’été est aussi le moment des changements, et nous perdons Capt Law, Adj Shlakat et Sgt Shlakat qui iront à Gagetown et Connaught. Nous sommes très fiers de vous avoir eu comme personnel à temps plein à l’unité. Vous avez assisté, suivi, appuyé et encadré notre personnel à l’unité et nous vous en remercions chaleureusement. De la part du Régiment, nous vous remercions. Heureusement, nous aurons le personnel du QM et CplC Perry pour assurer le suivi.

Op LENTUS : Félicitations à nos Rifles pour un travail très bien fait et pour avoir passé aux Nouvelles de l’Armée! Cplc Moss s’est distingué par son leadership naturel, et tous les Brocks ont été apprécié par le Cmdt de Pon et son adj. Félicitations à tous!

151e Diner des Officiers : la soirée fut un succès et notre invité d’honneur MGen Turenne, Commandant Adjoint de l’Armée Canadienne a remarqué les liens étroits entre le Régiment et la Ville. De plus, le maire Henderson a été remercié pour son soutien remarquable envers l’unité.

La phase 1 des rénovations a terminé à temps pour le diner, et représente une opportunité pour revoir l’emploi des espaces. Merci au personnel de jour pour le suivi assidu des travaux, et de faire faire les correctifs. Notre prochain défi est de confirmer le projet de rénovation de la phase 2 et recevoir le financement. Le Slt Melchers en sera responsable.

Ces rénovations ont créé l’opportunité de repenser notre aménagement intérieure. J’ai reçu la proposition de déplacer les Messes et de placer le musée ailleurs, la ou se trouve le mess des Carabiniers présentement. Je suis reconnaissant à tous qui ont soumis leur opinion sur ce sujet, vous témoignez de votre engagement envers votre unité et ses besoins futurs.

Récemment, notre collection historique a attiré l’attention, suite aux recherches du Capt Richard Law sur un ensemble de médailles, dévoilant l’histoire incroyable du soldat Torrance Glazier du 41e Bataillon (Brockville Rifles). Ayant combattu dans quatre guerres, il doit être le soldat le plus décoré de l’unité! Ce qu’a fait le Sdt Glazier équivaux à ce que nous avons fait en Afghanistan, tel Sgt Hopper, Cplc Jackson, Cpls Zeiman, Blair-Beveridge, et Mensen, et les autres Brocks là-bas.

Le recrutement va bien selon Sgt Hopper avec une cible de 25 soldats qui nécessitera des courses QMB et ouvrira des postes pour nos instructeurs.

L’année prochaine nous nous concentrerons lors de nos opérations et exercices sur la défense… nous placerons alors nos armes lourdes et mitrailleuse, ensuite les Pelotons et les tranchées de sections, le barbelé, et les patrouilles!

Déploiements : Nous attendons les détails sur le Peloton de réservistes, mais chose certaine, c’est une opportunité incroyable et vous devez être qualifié et prêt à partir, donc faites bien sur vos cours d’ été!

Durant l’été ceux disponibles vont participer à des exercices de sports pour faire une équipe des Rifles aux Jeux Ecossais en aout. Le SMR sera le coach au concours du tir de la corde, et Cpls Zeiman et Perry nous trouverons des chemises d’équipe!

Les sports sont une part importante des activités de l’Armée afin de développer la résistance et la résilience, et pour cette raison le RSM et moi appuyons une équipe de coureurs de la Course de l’Armée. Le personnel PSP fournira des plans d’entrainement pour le 10Km, ou le demi-marathon avec votre Commandant.

L’entrainement d’été a été lancé et vous êtes tous en général impliqué. Faites ca bien, gardez votre tète haute, apprenez votre métier d’infanterie, évitez les mauvaises influences… maintenez OP HONNEUR en tête, car l’Armée recherche des candidats engagé et motivé pour entraine les milliers de recrues à venir.

Le SMR et moi vous souhaitons un bon été rempli de collaboration. Jeudi prochain sera la dernière journée au régiment. Passez un bon été, soyez professionnel, et nous vous revoyons en septembre!

Lcol Paul d’Orsonnens
Commandant
The Brockville Rifles

Message from the Commanding Officer LCol Paul d’Orsonnens May 2017

As The Brockville Rifles deploy on the flood relief operation, I am compelled to express how proud I am to be a Rifleman and the Commanding Officer of the unit. Our available members are supporting the hard-working efforts to save homes and critical infrastructure in Gatineau area, while assisting exhausted public services and communities as they assess the damage and begin the recovery and repairs. Our Rifles, under the leadership of MCpls Ryan Moss and Dustin Jackson, are well served.

I thought this is an appropriate time to reflect on the past months and share some words on all our accomplishments.

The unit is a strong proud group that is centered on camaraderie and a core of dedicated members that mutually support each other at all times. Members demonstrate personal pride, integrity and determination, self-discipline and initiative to get the job done the Rifles way. Its been that way since the Regiment was first formed in Brockville in 1796.

Out-going Commanding Officer Lcol Shawn Herron demonstrated his unwavering dedication throughout his tenure as CO and again at the Oct 2016 Change of Command ceremony. Despite the fact that he was facing a very difficult personal situation, he made himself available for the Rifles and professionally led an excellent parade. This was inspirational for us all and stiffened our backs as we stood on parade before our 33 Brigade Commander, Colonel P. Kelly, MSM, CD, to demonstrate that the Regiment will carry the day. We are extremely pleased that LCol Herron is considering returning to the unit in support of the unit Museum Committee.

Our 150th anniversary events were special moments that brought forward our proud history and Rifles tradition and reunited long lost Rifles. We are thankful to ex-CO Jeff Shaver and his team for making the year memorable, and to Roger Hum and his fellow authors for the magnificent Regimental History book. The donation by the Kirkland family of the Fenian Medalearned by Corporal Kirkland in 1870 with the 41st Brockville Battalion of Rifles that was received by Corporal Joe Ashford on behalf of the unit marked another important moment. I would also like to thank Cpl Nick Perry for his excellent performance on the Bass Drum at the Remembrance Day ceremony. His efforts ensured we all kept pace despite the cold dreary weather. I would like to make special mention of the cadets and officers of the 113 Brockville Rifles Army Cadet Corps and 870 Vampire Squadron Royal Canadian Air Cadets. They were valiant through the ceremony despite the cold weather and were rewarded with heartfelt applause by the appreciative citizens of the City of Brockville.

For the Vimy Ceremonies in Europe in April, The Brockville Rifles stepped up as the sole regimental delegation from 33 CBG. We were proud to represent the thousands of soldiers from our 156th CEF (Leeds and Grenville) Battalion (5th Division), and our soldiers that directly joined the PPCLI (Then an Ontario Regiment), the 2nd, 21st, and 38th CEF Battalions of the Canadian Corps.

The Honorary LCol (and ex-CO) Richard Garber and Lt (ret) Nathalie Thibault, Second-Lieutenant Andrew Melchers, Warrant Officer Chris Cox, and Corporal Sean Parker and I stood solemnly at attention in the shadow of this magnificent monument as the National Anthems and The Last Post was played; a proud Canadian moment. Our Corporal Roger Varacalli had a first-hand view of the ceremonies as our official unit representative on sentinel duty on the monument during the ceremony with Prince Charles, French President Hollande, our Governor-General and Prime Minister walked next to him.

At Menin Gate in Ypres, our delegation of 2lt Melchers, WO Cox and Cpl Parker joined our senior Rifles Regiment, The Queen’s Own Rifles, in laying a wreath to honor those from Brockville, and Grenville and Leeds Counties with no known graves but their names remain, engraved on the walls of the Gate.

The delegation later walked the beach of Courseulles-sur-Mer in solemn silence recalling where B Coy (The Brockville Rifles) of the SD&G Regt landed on D-Day 6 June 1944, braving machine gun fire to establish a beachhead in France and begin the liberation of Europe.

While in Europe, we also took time to focus on strengthening our alliance with The Rifles Regiment of the UK. We discussed possible future training opportunities for our Riflemen and women as we become affiliated with 8 Battalion The Rifles Regiment, their reserve battalion in the Yorkshire area.

Next year will be the commemoration our Battle Honour of the Pursuit to Mons, where the four Divisions of the Canadian Corps broke through German defences in 1918 and began a rapid pursuit that helped bring the Armistice of 11 Nov 1918. The Brockville Rifles will be present with a unit delegation to fulfill our duty to remember. We will continue our close collaboration with the Brockville Museum by holding a lecture series on those battles, as was done for the Vimy Commemoration.

The 44th Annual Rick Foldeak Hockey tournament was held in April, and all participating 33 CBG unit teams played their best to beat our sister units. our unit team, well coached by Warrant Officer Tal Shlaket, provided a determined and valiant effort, however it was the Camerons this year that skated away with the trophy in what was the largest tournament held with 20 teams playing! Well done RSM Gagnon at ensuring the hockey tournament continues to remain the longest running Army sports tournament.

Demonstrating initiative and foresight with our recruiting effort, our Sergeant Josh Hopper and our Orderly Room staff skillfully applied the new Army recruitment approaches and in so doing has increased our number of recruits, which will help fill out Mons Company, well done Sgt Hopper

Unit training was very well organized by WO Shlaket and MCpl Tim Perry, with many battle procedures practiced, our gunnery skills strengthened and our fieldcraft improved. Continuing the tradition that no Rifleman or woman leaves the field unless regrettably injured, Sgt Hopper successfully demonstrated his newly acquired skills with a hatchet that quickly led him to the local clinic for a series of stitches, followed however by a prompt return to the field!

The officer’s Mess Diner this year will proudly have as Guest of Honour the Deputy Commander of the Canadian Army, who is responsible for the Primary Reserve for the CA, and we are committed to ensuring that he remembers The Brocks!

As we start the Reserve Summer Training period, I strongly encourage you to apply our regimental ethos of self-discipline and commitment to the various tasks you will take on, to qualifications that will make you a more versatile soldier, to job tasking that gains you more experience, or for a career progression course that will help you develop your leadership potential and skills.

The RSM and I wish everyone a very good start to the summer training as the unit members join up with their RST taskings and the unit gets ready to hold our annual BBQ in early June.

SEMPER PARATUS

Lcol Paul d’Orsonnens MSM, CD
Commanding Officer
The Brockville Rifles

Brockville Hotel Accommodation 150th Anniversary Reunion Weekend

Brockville Hotel Accommodation
150th Anniversary Reunion Weekend
30 Sept – 3 Oct 2016

BROCKVILLE, August 2016 – In support of our Reunion Weekend a number of Brockville Hotels are offering a special reunion rate should returning Brocks choose to stay at their establishment. The special rate will differ from one hotel to another. Most will offer the military rate to both serving and non-serving members of the Regiment.

Knowing that some retired members may not possess a veteran’s ID card the hotels will honor the discount when the member indicates that he/she was a former member of The Brockville Rifles returning for the reunion.

The hotels have advised us that the member must register with each hotel directly and not through a broker like Trivago or Expedia as they will not honor the special rate and will probably be more expensive.

The hotels supporting our weekend are as follows:

Days Inn
Click Here for Days Inn Website

Days Inn – 613-342-6613

Comfort Inn
Click Here for Comfort Inn Website

Comfort Inn – 613-345-0042

Travelodge
Click here for Travelodge Website

Travelodge – 613-345-3102

Holiday Inn
Click here for Holiday Inn Website

Holiday Inn Express and Suites – 613-342-1883 (note the suites are not part of the discount).