It’s all in the family for Capt. Cori Lee. Listening to the stories of her grandfather, who was a navigator on the CC115 Buffalo, in her childhood, inspired her to one day join the military as well. Today, she’s followed in his footsteps and currently serves as an aerospace engineering officer at 19 Wing Comox.
Lee’s great grandfather and grandfather both served in the military, and her step-father is currently serving as a construction engineer. Growing up, she spent a lot of time around her grandfather and recalls the experiences he’d share with her.
“From an early age, I could see how passionate he was about his career and saw the same thing in my step-father later on in my childhood. I knew this would be a career where I could make meaningful contributions and gain unique experiences,” said Lee.
It seemed that Lee was answering the call of fate when she joined the military in 2008. Lee began her journey in the CAF by attending the Royal Military College.
“I enjoyed the physical and academic challenges during my time at the Royal Military College of Canada and found that RMC provided me with unique opportunities that I wouldn’t of had at any other University,” recalled Lee.
She fully became qualified in her trade as an aerospace engineering officer in August 2014, a trade she liked because of the variety of career options.
“For example, you can work at an operational squadron, an engineering or project cell, flight test engineering and the space program to name a few. The sky is literally the limit for this trade,” explained Lee.
While working in this trade at 442 Squadron, her primary role was the Deputy Squadron Aircraft Maintenance Engineering Officer and the Aircraft Maintenance Control Records Officer. She also served in the capacity of 442 Squadron Air Weapons and Explosives Safety Officer and Aviation Fluid Services Officer. Her tasks included managing and supervising the personnel and resources required to maintain aircrafts.
Currently, she is serving as 19 Wing Commander’s Executive Assistance.
One of the highlights of her time at the squadron have been the Search and Rescue Exercise followed by a Search and Rescue Mission Lee took part in.
“During the exercise and real search, it was extremely rewarding to be part of a highly professional team who were all focused and working towards the common goal of saving the lives of people who really needed our help,” noted Lee.
Being part of 442 Squadron is especially dear to the captain’s heart.
“The experiences I have gained at 442 Transport and Rescue Squadron have been extremely memorable. I feel very fortunate to have had the opportunity to work with some of the most skilled aircraft technicians in the country. 442 Sqn has always held a special place in my heart as this is the Sqn my grandfather retired from and I used to visit the Sqn as a little girl. There are still some IMP technicians who remember me when I was a child, and I find this very special,” said Lee.
Looking at her career so far, Lee has found joining the family business has been a rewarding choice for her.
“The Canadian Armed Forces provides amazing experiences and training that you simply would not get in any other profession. You will have a challenging and rewarding career while building friendships that will last a lifetime. Be prepared to work hard and go home every day with a strong sense of pride and accomplishment,” said Lee.