A Victoria army cadet has been recognized with a national award for his decisive and immediate actions during a fire in 2014.
Cadet Master Warrant Officer Nicholas Steffan, 18, was presented with the Cadet Commendation on Sunday during the 2483 Royal Canadian Army Cadet Corps annual ceremonial review in Esquimalt.
On March 17, during a regional cadet expedition in Whistler, Steffan was alerted to a fire that had started in the Whistler Athletes’ Centre.
With experience as a volunteer firefighter with the Otter Point Fire Department, he assisted in evacuating the 19 other cadets and staff, located firefighting equipment and extinguished the fire, suffering minor smoke inhalation in the process.
“Without the quick thinking and brave actions of Steffan, we may have had a very different outcome,” said Cmdr. Andrew Muir, commanding officer, Regional Cadet Support Unit (Pacific).
“His community involvement as a volunteer firefighter, combined with leadership training as a cadet, has created an outstanding citizen.”
Steffan is an accomplished cadet.
This summer he will travel to Scotland as part of the International Army Cadet Exchange and in August will be one of just two cadets from B.C. who will attend a two-week National Expedition in Capt Breton, N.S.
During the annual ceremonial review, he was also presented with the Lord Strathcona Medal, the highest award cadets can receive for leadership, citizenship and physical fitness.
The Royal Canadian Sea, Army and Air Cadets are national programs for youth ages 12 to18, which aim to develop in youth the attributes of good citizenship and leadership, promote physical fitness and stimulate the interest of youth in sea, land and air activities of the Canadian Armed Forces.