Almost a month into his new position incoming Army Sergeant Major CWO Alain Guimond believes family support is vital to achieving operational readiness.
Guimond began his new post June 18, 2015, where he works with the Commander of the Canadian Army Lieutenant-General Marquis Hainse.
The new Army Sergeant Major said, “While the men and women of the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) are away from home, training for the next mission, it is the families that carry the workload back at home. They are the true heroes, enduring long hours separated from their loved ones. By providing their loved ones with the support at home, families ensure mission success at home and abroad.”
Straight off the farm at 17 years old in Sainte-Blandine in rural Quebec, he signed up for the Army in Rimouski. He went to recruit school in St-Jean and finished first in the NQ3 (DP1) combat engineer trade course. Thirty-two years later, he has never looked back nor questioned the career choice he made.
CWO Guimond shares his life with his second wife, who is a former military member and a public servant for 35 years. His daughter from his first marriage is a registered nurse, and he is proud to say that his two step-sons have joined him by serving in the military. One is serving with the military police, with the other following in his footsteps as a combat engineer.
“I am very proud to have children in the CAF. Family support has always been part of the army way of life, and I fully support their decision to pursue such a noble and honourable career path,” said Guimond.
A career combat engineer who moved up through the ranks, CWO Guimond has credentials as a combat diver and as a parachutist. He dove for 21 years as a combat diver on various taskings such as sabotage exercises, reconnaissance missions, clearing mines and assisting in search and recovery operations.
Guimond faced challenging assignments, as well. He was the point person who worked on sending teams of army divers to assist in the recovery after Swissair 111 flight went down in the Atlantic Ocean near Nova Scotia in 1998.
CWO Guimond has had five deployments during his Army career, one tour in Afghanistan and four in Bosnia. During these deployments, he was away from his family.
“As the foundation of the Canadian Army’s success, families deserve recognition. Thanks to them, the Canadian Army can prepare for operations and carry them out effectively. Furthermore, the Canadian Army respects and values the contribution of families to Canadian Army readiness. The support from the families makes it much easier on our soldiers during training and deployment because they know they can concentrate on their jobs,” explained Guimond.
CWO Guimond is looking forward to his new job and hopes he will have some influence over soldiers about the things he is passionate about.
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