Canadian Forces Aeromedical Evacuation Flight celebrates a decade of innovation and hard work

Members of the Canadian Forces Aeromedical Evacuation Flight celebrate their 10th anniversary at 8 Wing Trenton
Members of the Canadian Forces Aeromedical Evacuation Flight celebrate their 10th anniversary at 8 Wing Trenton on February 23, 2019. Photo: Makala Chapman – The Contact


By Makala Chapman – The Contact

The Canadian Forces Aeromedical Evacuation Flight (CF AE) is celebrating its 10th anniversary. In order to commemorate the milestone, members of the deployable medical team gathered at the Officers’ Mess at 8 Wing Trenton on February 21.

During the special event, Flight Commander Major Marilou Beaucage shared a brief history of the unit, and highlighted some of their many accomplishments.

The decision to centralize aeromedical groups was made in November 2006 to improve efficiency. The following year, the first aeromedical evacuation crewmembers were posted to 8 Wing Trenton.

CF AE was officially stood up in October 9, 2009, and has since been carrying out missions both domestically and abroad. In its relatively short history, CF AE has flown hundreds of missions and has received the Canadian Forces Unit Commendations (CFUC) on two separate occasions.

The first commendation was presented to the flight back in 2012 in light of their work during the Afghanistan mission. They were awarded the prestigious honour again in 2016, officially receiving it in October 2018, for their role in developing a plan to evacuate Canadians who contracted Ebola overseas in 2014.

“We feel like it’s a milestone because it’s been a busy ten years,” Maj Beaucage said, adding: “We are a small unit but we accomplish a lot and are a part of big projects.”

As for what inspires those in CF AE to continue doing the work that they do, Maj Beaucage noted it was their dedication to both the mission and the patients.

“We are passionate about our job because we care about our members,” she said. “We want to support them and bring them back home safe to their families.”

In terms of what’s next for the flight, she noted the “future is bright” and said she was looking forward to seeing their capabilities and role in the Canadian Armed Forces expand.

CF AE’s former flight commander Maj Sandra Pilote also shared a few words in a written statement. She noted that being a part of the aeromedical team had been a highlight of her career. “This 10 year’s success is the result of team work,” she wrote. “I take with me fond memories, valuable skills, friends and so much more. I hope to one day leave an impression on others similar to the one CF AE left on me.”

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