Family members experience a day in the life

419 photo day
Capt Howard “Pikey” Pike sits on the wing with his daughter Melissa Shields in the jet as family members enjoy a day at 419 Squadron. Photo: Submitted

Capt. Taylor Cartwright & Capt. Anthony Gandouin

On Friday, June 21, 419 Tactical Fighter (Training) Squadron conducted a ‘Moose Walk’, an event organized to allow the friends and relatives of Squadron members to experience the work environment of their partners, spouses, and family members. With coordination across the Wing, including 4 Wing Operations Support Squadron (OSS), Air Traffic Control, and Rescue Services, the event was completed successfully with a close eye on safety and supervision.

After an introductory address from LCol Colin J. ‘Moose’ Marks, guests received a safety briefing on emergency procedures as well as an outline of what to expect from the afternoon’s activities.

A barbecue was held to provide food and refreshments while the day’s experience was underway.

Despite the continuous threat of rain, thunder, and lightning the weather held and 419 Squadron was able to press ahead with the day’s events.

Spread over three waves, the 13 Squadron guests were outfitted with jackets and helmets provided by the Aircrew Life Support Equipment (ALSE) team to more fully experience fast jet cockpit claustrophobia. After kit fitting, a detailed ‘outbrief’ was conducted to ensure all necessary safety procedures were followed and to minimize the risk of foreign object debris (FOD) to the jets and their occupants.

Taking control of the radios for flight ”check in” meant guests were fully involved as they “Moose Walked” in formation to the main runway at 4 Wing Cold Lake. A full formation line up followed, with engine run-ups to full power before brake release and a short taxi down the runway. Once complete, the jets taxied back to the squadron ramp where photographs of the crews were taken to commemorate the event.

While guests were being cycled through the taxi experience the barbecue skills of squadron members were put to the test by participants with a tasty spread enjoyed by all, along with some further refreshments at the conclusion of the event. 419 Tac F (T) Sqn would like to thank 4 Wing for the support received in conducting the event and the efforts of those directly involved across both military and CAE personnel. We very much look forward to being able to repeat the event with as much success next year.

Moosa Aswayita!