L-R: Honorary Lieutenant-Colonel (Retired) Sharman Thomas Senior, Private Sharman Thomas Junior, Major Nils French, and Chief Warrant Officer Sharman Thomas. Photo: Submitted

Trail Armoury marks historic moment when new member enrols

Private Thomas anticipates a rewarding career in the forces

Patriotism runs deep through the Sharman family, going back three generations and counting.

With the enrollment of new member Sharman Thomas Junior last week, an historic moment happened at the 44th Engineer Squadron in Trail.

Sharman junior is a third generation member of the squadron, marking a first in the unit’s almost 75-year history.

For the occasion he was joined by two very special role models.

His grandfather, Honorary Lieutenant-Colonel (Retired) Sharman Thomas Senior, who served as Commanding Officer of the 44th in the early 1970s in the rank of Major, was present for the occasion.

Also at Sharman junior’s side was his father, Chief Warrant Officer Sharman Thomas. Sharman Thomas spent three decades with the unit, becoming Regimental Sergeant Major before transitioning to a role with the Canadian Cadet Program.

Sharman Thomas described his son’s enrolment as a proud moment for the family and was happy that all three generations were able to attend.

Sharman Junior, now officially Private Thomas, excelled in the Canadian Cadet Program in his youth and is now looking forward to be in the reserves.

He anticipates a rewarding career with the forces in the years to come.

Major Nils French, the current commander of the 44th, conducted the enrolment at the Kemball Armoury in Trail the afternoon of Thursday, May 13.

L-R: Chief Warrant Officer Sharman Thomas, Private Sharman Thomas Junior, Major Nils French, and Honorary Lieutenant-Colonel (Retired) Sharman Thomas Senior. Photo: Submitted

French noted that it is common to have multiple members of the same family serving in the unit, pointing out that three brothers from Fruitvale were all members at the same time.

“Two generations has been common in the history of the 44th, but this is the first we’ve seen three generations” he said.

French, whose father served in the Army Reserves in Ontario, explained that military members know better than anyone else the many opportunities the Canadian Armed Forces offer and they often pass this on to their family members.

The 44th Engineer Squadron, part of B.C.’s 39 Combat Engineer Regiment, has armouries in Trail and Cranbrook.

The squadron is currently accepting applications for part-time positions (one evening per week, one weekend per month) with guaranteed full-time summer employment for the first four years.

More information is available at www.forces.ca or by calling the squadron directly at 250.368.2129.

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