Three members of the Kittyhawk Air Cadet Squadron have resigned their positions within the squadron and will soon be leaving the Saanich Peninsula for what is certain to be an exciting and rewarding next chapter in their lives.
All three of the cadets have been accepted to attend the Royal Military College in Kingston, Ontario, where they will be embarking in what they hope will be successful careers in the Canadian military.
Kane Cracknell is one of the trio who joined the air cadets at the age of 12. In the six years following, Cracknell participated in the Squadron Computer Air Simulation Centre (CASC), where he learned to fly on flight simulators. He also excelled on the squadron’s biathlon and marksmanship teams and, in his last year with the Squadron, Cracknell achieved the highest rank of Warrant Officer First Class, and the parade position of Squadron Commander.
He was accepted into the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) through the Regular Officer Training Program (ROTP), and will pursue an education at Royal Military College to support his chosen career as an Air Combat Systems Officer.
Cracknell will be following his family’s military footsteps, as his grandfather was a reconnaissance pilot in the Royal Air Force.
Ryan Kelly also joined the Kittyhawk Squadron when he was 12 years of age and, like Cracknell, came with a familial tie to the military as his father is a Chief Petty Officer, 1st Class, with the Canadian Navy.
In Kelly’s case, it was the music program within cadets that caught his interest. He played a variety of instruments since he was only six years old, and within cadets, he excelled at the trumpet.
At the Military College he will focus on his studies toward an Electrical Engineering degree in the hopes of working toward a career as a Marine Systems Engineering Officer.
“I may need to set my trumpet down for the next few years at RMC,” said Kelly with a chuckle.
The last of the three young cadets, Curtis Dunsmuir, was urged to join cadets by his parents when he was 13.
With a love of aviation, he was an active member of the Squadron’s CASC program, and successfully obtained his glider licence through an air cadet scholarship opportunity in 2017.
His leadership skills were also recognized and he served as a Flight Sergeant and an appointment as the Squadron’s Flag Party Commander, where he remained until his resignation from the Squadron last week.
Dunsmuir’s first choice was to become a Canadian Air Force pilot, but, for now, he is thrilled to have also been accepted into the CAF ROTP program where he will pursue aeronautical engineering in his quest to becoming an aerospace engineer.
Captain Michael Tellier, the Commanding Officer of the 676 Kittyhawk Air Cadets, expressed pride in the three young men, and noted that it was both a testament to the quality of the air cadet program and the character of the trio from his squadron that three cadets would be accepted to the College, an institution that accepts only 350 new students annually from a host of world-wide applications.