by Peter S. Milsom, President, Kemptville
Branch, Navy League of Canada
This article is to announce and celebrate the award of the prestigious Navy League of Canada 125th Anniversary Commemorative medallion. What is the medallion intended to celebrate? Canada is a maritime nation. The objectives of the Navy League of Canada, incorporated in Canada in 1895, are diverse and strongly focused on the best interests of Canada in the maritime domain. Bordered by three oceans, this focus is understandable, but more than that, it is an imperative. This medallion celebrates 125 successful years of achievement of objectives.
The Royal Canadian Navy established the Cadet Program and updated it for the times to give young boys and girls the opportunity to develop good mental, moral and physical strength, to develop patriotism, leadership, good citizenship, a sense of duty, discipline, self-respect, and to respect others — all in a naval environment suitable for young people. What an incredible way to develop amazing young contributing Canadian citizens! Communities, organizations, and private citizens have worked together over the years and decades to make this success story happen. The award of this medallion acknowledges this type of supportive contribution, but also acknowledges the outstanding achievement of young cadets who have shown personal dedication and endeavour in responding to the program itself. Both sides of that coin must be acknowledged.
And speaking of coin, the medallion pictured here is in the form of a commemorative coin (but cannot be spent as currency) and is a splendid, indeed an elegant token of acknowledgment for those rare few chosen to receive it. This is decidedly not a cast of thousands. In Kemptville, with so many wonderful supporters, how could the allocation of four medallions — two per corps — be most meaningfully undertaken? The Board decided that each Cadet Corps should select two deserving recipients: the first, a cadet who has uniquely represented the best qualities of the cadets of the corps. The second, a civilian contributor whose personal commitment and contribution to the corps best exemplifies a spirit and generosity of effort supporting the welfare and best interests of the young members of the cadet program in Kemptville.