Featured Squadron of the Month

205 Collishaw Squadron

Squadron Name:  205 Collishaw Squadron
Chartered:  November 12, 1942 
Status:  Active
Community:  Nanaimo, BC

Squadron History

Like many other squadrons in Canada, 205 Nanaimo Squadron (original name) received its charter in 1942 soon after the formation of the Air Cadet League of Canada. Squadron numbers at that time (i.e. – 205) all ran in numerical order, regardless of geographical location. On November 12, 1942, 205 Squadron was chartered under its first Commanding Officer, Flying Officer Jack Fouracres. The first inspection parade was held in the Nanaimo Arena.

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First squadron Banner

The first sponsoring body for the squadron was the Nanaimo School Board of Trustees with the squadron parading in the John Shaw High School on Franklyn Street, Nanaimo. Around 1945/1946 the Lions Club assisted by the Rotary Club of Nanaimo took over the Civilian sponsorship of the Squadron. This responsibility was later taken over by independent parent groups and other interested citizens. Some, and later most, of the squadron’s finances during this period came from United Appeal funds.

In 1974, 808 Thunderbird Wing of the Royal Canadian Air Force Association assumed the Civilian sponsorship of 205 Nanaimo Squadron providing the squadron with the LHQ it currently occupies at 719 Nanaimo Lks Road, Nanaimo BC.

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205 Squadron at Sea Island Summer Camp in 1960

In 1966, a group of young ladies from the Nanaimo area became interested in Air Cadet Training. They approached the 808 Thunderbird Wing to request they be sponsored as Cadettes and become an integral part of the squadron. Because the Air Cadet League of Canada’s mandate did not include female cadets, the 808 Wing independently sponsored these young ladies under strict supervision. They permitted them to train with 205 Nanaimo Squadron, thus obtaining the skills required to make them a well-disciplined cadet group. These Cadettes will be remembered for their colorful kilts of first BC Tartan (then RCAF Tartan), white shirts and blue blazers. After July, 30, 1975, the date Bill C-16 received Royal Assent, girls were officially integrated into the Air Cadet program allowing them to wear the regulation blue uniform of the Canadian Forces, as worn by all air cadets and supplied by the Department of National Defense.

One person of note whose individual generous contributions of time and expertise over his 41 years of affiliation to 205 Collishaw Squadron, impacted the moulding of not only the history of the squadron but the future careers of thousands of young Nanaimo cadet is Capt. Roy Herrington (Retd).

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Flt Sgt. Roy Herrington receiving his wings

Capt. Herrington started his affiliation with the Air Cadet program in 1966 as an Air Cadet with 676 Kittyhawk Squadron in Sidney BC. Here he qualified for and earned his private pilot wings while honing his musical skill as a trumpet player in the squadron band. After aging out and moving to Nanaimo, in 1977 he joined the CIC (Cadet Instructor Cadre) branch of the DND as an officer Cadet with 205 Collishaw. While working his way up the ranks of the CIC he took courses in technical shooting, Band instructing, Outdoor Survival, Abseiling and Orienteering. He also took courses through his civilian job with Telus that assisted him in his leadership role in the Air Cadet Program. Roy served two terms as the Commanding officer of 205 Collishaw Squadron before his retirement from the CIC in 2018.

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Capt. Roy Herrington

In 2003 Capt. Roy Herrington was awarded the Queen’s Golden Jubilee Medal for his contributions to the city and Youth of Nanaimo BC.

In 1992 the Squadron name was changed to 205 Collishaw Squadron in recognition of Nanaimo born WWI/WWII air hero, Air Vice Marshal Raymond Collishaw.

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2016 City Trip
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2018 Squadron Staff

On November 12, 2022, 205 Collishaw RCACS of Nanaimo proudly celebrated its 80th Year of serving and supporting the city of Nanaimo. 80 years of providing the youth of Nanaimo with training in all aspects of the Aviation Industry. Flying, Gliding, Aircraft maintenance, Airport Operations, to name a few. Cadets are offered opportunities to participate in Effective speaking training, Music, Range, First aid, The Duke of Edinburgh Program, and International Air Cadet Exchange travel. Cadets are also given the opportunity to earn up to 12 High School credits along with National and Provincial scholarships and bursaries to go towards their High School Graduation and post secondary education.

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2016 Gliding Weekend
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2017 FTX

At 205 Collishaw Squadron, none of this would have been possible without the generous support the squadron receives from their Corporate Sponsors: 808 Thunderbird Wing, Royal Canadian Air Force Association, Royal Canadian Legion #10 (Nanaimo), Royal Canadian Legion #191 (Chemainus), Royal Canadian Legion #256 (Mount Benson), Royal Canadian Legion #257 (Lantzville) and the volunteer support of the Cadet parents serving on the Squadron Sponsoring Committee.

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2023 Annual Ceremonial Review - Squadron Photograph

Commanding Officers
205 Nanaimo High School Squadron 1942 – 1946

DatesCommanding Officers
1942 – 1946FO Jack Fouracres

Commanding Officers
205 Nanaimo Squadron 1947 – 1992

DatesCommanding OfficersDatesCommanding Officers
1946 – 1949FO Jack Fouracres1949 – 1951FO Roy Thorsteinson
1951 – 1959FL Jack Neil1959 – 1965S/L Lew Davies
1965 – 1973FL Norm Bain1973 – 1974Capt Norm Swanson
1974 – 1978Maj John Quarnstorm1978 – 1979Capt Norm Swanson
1979 – 1982Major John Cooper1982 – 1984Lt Paddy Paddison
1984 – 1987Capt John Barr1987 – 1990Capt Jim P Easton, MMM, CD

Commanding Officers
205 Collishaw Squadron 1992 – Present

DatesCommanding OfficersDatesCommanding Officers
1990 – 1993Capt Doug Slowski, CD1993 – 1996Maj Roy Herrington, CD
1996 – 1999Maj Joseph Stevens, CD1999 – 2001Capt Gerrit Loeffen
2001Capt Joseph Stevens, CD2001 – 2005Maj Roy Herrington, CD
2005 – 2008Maj Richard Mudryk, CD2008 -2011Capt Susan Morgan, CD
2011Capt William Dornan2011-2013Capt William (Bil) Derby
2013-2016Capt George Ruscoff, CD2016-2018Capt Cortnee Morgan, CD
2018-2022Capt Tamara Edwards, CD2022-Capt David Ruel

Sponsoring Committee Chairs
205 Collishaw Squadron 1992 – Present

DatesCommittee ChairsDatesCommittee Chairs
1992 – 1993Mr. J Keltie1994-1995Mr. B Fergusson
1995-1997Mr. Rick Higgins1998Mr. Dave Tyler
1999Mr. Glenn Cox2000-2001Mrs. K McDonald
2002Mrs. Theresa Gustafson2003Mrs. Valli Bajan
2004-2006Mr. Harry Cubbage2007Mrs. Doreen Stinson
2008Mrs. Marilyn Rodgers2009Mr. Bill Shook
2010Ms Kelly Olynyk2011-2012Mr. Gerry Derksen
2013-2014Mr. Neil Cyr2015Mr. Chris Jaeger
2016Mr. Chris Jaeger then Mr. David Ruel2017Mr. David Ruel then Mr. James Van Domselaar
2018Mr. James Van Domselaar2019-2022Ms. Grace Dean
2023-2024Capt (retired) Gerrit Loeffen

Cadet Commanders
2015 Collishaw Squadron 1992 – Present

DatesCadet CommandersDatesCadet Commanders
1992 –WO1 Large1993
1994WO1 Clayton (Jan94) and1995WO1 A Farrow
1996WO1 J Battie and J Martin1997WO1 R Marsden and S. Seykora
1998WO1 Olga Canlas1999WO1 Olivia Canlas
2000WO1 Nancy Wong2001WO1 Cortnee Morgan
2002WO1 Jordan LaBossiere2003WO1 Seamus O’Connell
2004WO1 Tim Hou2005WO1 Michal Rafa, WO1 Aaron LaBossiere
2006WO1 Robert Gagliano, WO1 Aaron Tuba2007WO1 Mitchell Lehman
2008WO1 Jessie Lublinkhof2009WO1 Travis Shook
2010WO1 Dhruva Nathan2011WO2 Casey Lublinkhof
2012WO1 Sarah Lumley2013WO2 Rebecca Lumley
2014WO2 William Groundwater2015WO2 Jacob Campbell
2016WO1 Joshua Lumley2017WO1 Alex Dempsey
2018WO1 Leo Shin2019WO2 Landon Van Domselaar
2020WO1 Austin Elzinga2021WO2 Myles Tayor AND WO2 River Reid (covid COHORTS)
2022WO1 River Reid2023WO1 River Reid, WO1 Joseph Clemotte

Reviewing Officers
2015 Collishaw Squadron 1992 – Present

DateReviewing OfficersDateReviewing Officers
1992Maj U. Jaggi, CD1993LCol Thomas R Byrne CD
1994Col Finn A. Knutsen, MSC, CD (Ret’d)1995Maj Chuck Fast, CD
1996Brig. Gen. K.O. Simonson, CD (Retired)1997Maj D.G. Crocker, CD
1998Maj J.W. Stevens, CD1999Brig Gen (Retired) Barry D. Bowen, CD
2000Maj Gen (Retired) Scott Eichel, CD2001LCol Thomas R. Byrne, CD
2002LGen (Retired) Brian Smith, CD2003LCol Colin Goodman, CD
2004LCol Francois Gaboury, CD2005LCol Paul Ormsby, CD
2006LCol Doug Slowski, CD2007LCol Doug Slowski, CD
2008Superintendent Jeff Lott, OIC, Nanaimo RCMP2009Mayor John Ruttan
2010LCol Doug Slowski, CD2011R/Adm Greenwood N.S., OMM, CD
2012Maj Aaron Macluskie, CD2013Maj Ab Jagat, CD
2014Maj Carrie Johnston, CD2015LCol Glenn Watters, CD
2016Maj Allan Thompson, CD2017Mr Mike Hooper, Nanaimo Airport Commission
2018Commander Scott McVicar, SSM, CD2019Commander Brad Henderson, CD
2020Mayor Len Krog2021Maj Ryan Kean, CD
2022Maj (Retired) Len Campbell, CD2023LS (Retired) Lewis Forth

Our sincere thanks to Ms. Allison Haapala for her contributions to our November 2023 Squadron of the Month Feature.

More detailed and current information about 205 Collishaw Squadron can be found on their website at https://www.205collishaw.com

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