8 Wing Trenton welcomes new honorary colonel

Two men look at each other while a third stands slightly behind.
Honorary Colonel John Smylie (left) is welcomed by outgoing Honorary Colonel John Williams (centre), as wing commander Colonel Mark Goulden looks on, during Honorary Colonel Smylie’s investiture as the new honorary colonel of 8 Wing. PHOTO: Ordinary Seaman Paul Green

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8 Wing Public Affairs

Members of 8 Wing Trenton gave a warm welcome to their new Honorary Colonel, Mr. John Smylie, during an investiture ceremony at the National Air Force Museum of Canada, Trenton, Ontario, on September 20, 2018.

Honorary Colonel Smylie succeeds Honorary Colonel John Williams who has been the wing’s ambassador of goodwill to the local community since December 2014, continuing the tradition of exceptional leaders appointed as honorary colonels of 8 Wing.

“I look forward to starting my new role at 8 Wing as the wing honorary colonel. While I expect this positon will be busy, it is a positive reflection of the impact this wing has on our community and the great relationship we have with the people of the Quinte West region,” said Honorary Colonel Smylie.

As owner of Smylie’s Your Independent Grocer in Trenton and a previous honorary colonel of 436 Transport Squadron, Honorary Colonel Smylie is a familiar face at 8 Wing. His new role will see him take on ever greater responsibilities as honorary colonel of Canada’s largest and busiest air base.

“We are very pleased to welcome Honorary Colonel Smylie in his new role as 8 Wing honorary colonel, while we thank Honorary Colonel John Williams for his dedicated service,” said Colonel Mark Goulden, the commander of 8 Wing. “Honorary Colonel Williams has had exceptional influence on community and wing relationships for many years as a leader in the community. We will be forever thankful to him for the support that he provided to the women and men on our base, and to the Royal Canadian Air Force.

“I know John Smylie very well, and I know that he will continue the legacy of Honorary Colonel Williams, building on our strong relationship with the community and continuing to support our defence team.”

About 8 Wing Trenton

From delivering supplies to the high Arctic to airlifting troops, equipment and humanitarian loads worldwide, 8 Wing/Canadian Forces Base Trenton is the hub of air mobility operations in Canada.

8 Wing is responsible for search and rescue (SAR) operations over a large area under the jurisdiction of the Joint Rescue Coordination Centre (JRCC) Trenton.

As the hub of air transport operations, 8 Wing is involved in virtually every Canadian Armed Forces operation. 8 Wing Trenton is arguably Canada’s largest and busiest air force base.

About honorary colonels

The honorary colonel rank is “honorary and advisory,” and honorary rank does not confer authority or command function. Honoraries can provide continuity within the unit on matters of community events and activities, unit traditions etc. – of importance can be speaking to new recruits and young officers on unit history and traditions.


Royal Canadian Air Force

RCAF honorary colonels

8 Wing Trenton

Image gallery

  • Three men wearing military uniforms, sit behind a tartan covered table. Each has a large folder in front of him.
  • Two men wearing military uniforms shake hands while a third stands slightly behind them.
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