Canadian Warrant Officers And NCOs - A Media Perspective

Discussion in 'Multinational HQ' started by wotan, Dec 1, 2006.

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  1. Given the recent death of CWO Girouard, RSM of the Royal Canadian Regiment Battle Group in Kandahar, Afghanistan, Mr. Bill Graveland of Sun Media has written an article to explain to the public the role of Warrant Officers and NCOs in the CF. It can be found here:

    The loss of any of our soldiers is sad, whether Private, NCO, Warrant Officer or Officer. But his article contains some good points, even if it must, due to space limitations, over-simplify some points. All in all, a good read, IMHO.
  2. I was sort of worried about the title in that it might attract certain, unwanted attention, however, if it helps "that person" out, by all means go for it and best of luck. Better men than I have tried to explain it to him and failed, hence, I've stayed out of that discussion.
  3. The link doesn't seem to be working.
  4. It does seem that the link has gone dead. Sorry about that.

    Provided the Mods are ok with it, I will re-type the article here under the provisions of the Canadian Fair Dealings Act. The article is credited to Mr. Bill Graveland of The Canadian Press as published in the Edmonton Sun of 2 Dec 06.


    Soldiers look up to senior non-commissioned officers as mentors and role models, the backbone of the army. When an "NCO" is killed, the loss is felt across the ranks.

    The conflict in Afghanistan is taking a serious toll on senior NCOs in the Forces.

    The death of Chief Warrant Officer Bobby Girouard, the Regimental Sergeant Major, in a suicide attack on Monday is just the tip of the iceberg. Two warrant officers, six sergeants and two master corporals are among the Canadians killed.

    "Of course it hurts us - as human beings, as men" said Maj Todd Scharlach, "when you lose key personnel and professional soldiers like Mr. Girouard and all the other soldiers we've lost as well."

    "Senior NCOs are really the backbone of a professional army. Their experience is vast," said Scharlach. "They're the ones that have risen from the rank of Private right up to - in the case of Chief Warrant Officer Girouard - the Regimental Sergeant Major."

    Non-commissioned officers play leadership roles but do not have formal commissions - unlike officers who have documents signed by The Queen commissioning them. Warrant Officers are given a warrant, a lesser-grade commission.

    Scharlach said even officers initially learn from senior NCOs during training.

    Commissioned officers move in and out of military units all the time. It is the non-commissioned officers who remain, maintaining continuity, enforcing rules, professionalism and pride.

    "And when you lose a senior Warrant Officer or NCO, it's very difficult on the organization," said Scharlach. "The soldiers truly look up to these individuals because they know that guy has been where I am right now."

    LCol Omer Lavoie, commander of the Royal Canadian Regiment Battle Group, mourned the loss of Girouard and called him a friend and confidante.

    "He is the man the soldiers aspire to be like and try to emulate," Lavoie said. "By leading through example, he sets the tone on all aspects ranging from dress, discipline, how the soldiers....conduct themselves in both battle and out of battle.

    "He was the epitome of setting the example that we'd expect of our soldiers, and he went above and beyond that."

    Cpl John Lougheed, 23, of Leamington, Ont, is well aware that there have been a lot of senior NCOs killed in the past year.

    "I'm in a bit of a leadership role right now with all the casualties our platoon took. I kind of got bumped up there," he said.

    Scharlach said the normal way to deal with vacancies is to simply move everybody up a step on the chain of command. "All along the line, you get promotions."


    The Canadian Fair Dealings Act does allow for this type of reproduction, however if the Mods feel it is inappropriate, I fully understand.

    **edited because my spelling made me seem more mong-like than usual.
  5. Thanks for transcribing the text. This is one of the few articles that is genuinely worth reading and certainly worth saving to look back upon.

    It gives soldiers, both junior and senior, a target to work towards and explains how the system works.

    If only the circumstances that led to its publication could have been different.
  6. Thanks, I just thought the article was too good to lose due to a bad link. And thanks to the Mods for tolerating it. I didn't know CWO Girouard, but he sounds like a Hell of a man. If his loss can make a few troopies work harder and save the loss of others, I'm sure he would call it square.

    VRI (Victoria Regina Imperatrix- it forms the RCR capbadge)
  7. I don't understand the part about "American" brothers. I fully agree with the article and its meanings toward Warrant Officers and Senior NCO's (we call them Staff NCO's). I don't believe, you will find too many people who have served in the American military which would disagree.

    Side Bar: Wotan, my apologies. I just spent a week in Red Deer, for my birthday. I forgot to send you an email for a pint. Again, my apologies.
  8. Howdy Phil,

    I believe that PassingBells was referring to Chief Two, but was trying to put it nicely without pointing fingers at anyone in specific. Guess I've kind of boned that, though, eh?

    And no worries, it was a busy weekend. Between handing over the Presidency of my Legion Branch, getting the boy to Defensive Driver Training and attending the "Welcome Home" to the troops at Rexall Place, there wasn't a lot of time left over. But, definitely give a shout when you are up this way. Cheers.
  9. The sad loss of a fellow Chief Warrant Officer :cry:

  10. DO NOT disrespect this Warrant with a comparison to yourself, Chief two.
  11. Even though not a WO and I will never be one, I must concur with TLFs comment!
  12. My sincere condolances to the family of Chief Girouard.
  13. Chief_Two,

    Nicely put and well done. The sentiment is appreciated. BZ for staying on target.