Sunday, 3 June 2018


 Mark Johnson and I where fresh out of high school. We really

were unsure what we wanted to do once we graduated. There were

a lot options and none of them stuck out at us. Mark had

applied to several different collages, he never heard anything

back from them. Mark and I were hanging out over at the mall. 

 Mark went in to the outfitters store. This store had

everything any outdoorsy person could  ask for.

     Mark was one of 4 kids, both of his brother's had joined

the RCMP.
“, dude what kind of tent did your parents want you to pick up


“, It's the Coleman 8 person tent, Mark replied.”

“, it's this one right here.”

     Marks family loved being outdoors. I had gone camping with

them on the G.T trail last year.

     Mark grabbed the tent off the shelve. We started heading

towards the cashier. There wasn't much a selection, to chose

from. Of course they didn't have my size.

 “, what, I asked.”

“, Roller blades, really dude, Mark replied.”

“, I've always had a interest in inline skating, I said.”

“, I always thought you were a skate board kind of guy.”

“, nope more roller blading then anything else buddy.”

“, come on Mark you know I can skate like a pro.”

     Mark and I headed up to the second floor. The Military had

several tables set up in front of an empty store.

I had been thinking about joining the Military, after I had

graduated from high school. 

     I walked around the booth thinking this would be a cool job.

Training was 10 to 12 weeks long. But before  you could start

training you had  pass a physical.

“,  are you joining dude or what, I just signed up myself,

replied Mark.”

“, I'm thinking about it.”

     The more I thought about it, the more I  wanted to join the

Military. I Was starting to get hungry and I could hear Marks

tummy growling. Let me just say that when Mark gets hungry he

gets really grumpy.

“, excuse me sir, where do I sign up, I asked.”

“, Right over here.”

     I followed the recruiter in to empty store that they had set

up for those who where wanting to join the armed forces. These

guys took their jobs really seriously.

      Just like that I had joined the Military. This was one of the

biggest decision I had ever made in my life.

“, Well dude how did it go, Mark asked.”

“, it went grate they asked me all these questions, before I

knew it, I was signing on the dotted line, I replied.”

“, How is your bother Cody  going to react when he finds out

you joined the Military.”

 I never thought for one second how Cody and mom would react to

me joining the Military. I mean job is a job no matter what.

 As long as I can pay my bills and put food on the dinner


     Life was tough enough, people where losing their jobs and

others are losing their jobs to other countries.

     We headed to the food court to grab something to eat. I knew

what I was going to have, like always I headed right for


“, What are you in the mood for Mark.”

“, I was thinking burger king or getting something from

A&W,Mark said.”

“, I'll meet you over at those table by the door.”

     When I finally got my order, I headed over to the table where

 Mark was waiting.

“, Gee it took them long enough to make your sub, Mark said.”

“, they are just under staff today.”

“, interesting.”

     After we had finished eating lunch we headed back to

Mark's house so he could drop off the tent. Mark's parents had

their kitchen redone back in the winter time.

“, Hello, anybody home.”

“, Hey boy's, how was the mall this afternoon, Marks mom ask.”

“, It wasn't too busy today.”

     Mark and I went up to his room. I had to go to the washroom

really bad. Mark was in his room getting change before we

headed over to my house. I couldn't believe that Mark never

told his parents that he had joined the Military.

“, Hey Mark why didn't you tell your parents about you joining

the Military, I asked.”

“, I will before we leave to go to your house.”

“, cool,I replied.”

     I could tell that Mark was nervous about telling his parents

that he had joined the Military,  in all honesty, I think

his parents would be cool with it.

“, dude I will meet you down stair's.”

     I headed down stairs and poked my head in to the kitchen where

Mrs. Walker was baking. Marks house always smelt good, even

when Mrs. Walker wasn't baking cookies.

“, damn it smells good down here.”

“, Awe thank you honey, give me one second I have a plate of

cookies here for you, Mrs. Walker said.”

“, Thanks Mrs. Walker, I replied.”
 Mark came running down the stairs. He was whiter then a ghost.

Mark handed me his cell phone. I took a look at it, I knew by

the number Mark and I had either been excepted or rejected for

basic training.

     When I answered the phone the voice on the other end told me

that Mark and I had passed our physicals and we where cleared

for basic training.

“, Who was that on the phone, asked Mrs. Walker.”

“, It was the recruiting office Mrs. we've been excepted for

training, I replied.”

“, I'm vary proud of you boys.”

     It was hard on a lot of the guys out here.  They get called

 to serve their country. Only to be deployed to a country that 

could end their lives. The toughest part about being 40

thousand miles away from home. Some guys make do with cheating

on their wife's with some of the local's.

     I was sitting in my tent doing some paper work before my next

 shift. I hated the fact that I was behind, but the truth is after my shift is over, I'm just way to tired to think and

write what went down.

     While I was doing my paper work there was a sudden knock

on my door, not that my tent had a door to knock on, if you

get my point.

“, come in.”

“, excuse me sir, the general is here to see you.”

“, thank you PVT. Thomas, tell the general I'll be right in, I


  I finished my paper work and headed to my office I didn't

want to keep the general waiting.

     I walked in to my office and there was this uneasy feeling in

the air. Judging by the look on the generals face this wasn't

one of those lets shoot the breeze kind of chats. No this was

something happened and your ass is grass kind of talks.

“, Sorry for the wait sir, that picture your looking at is of

my youngest daughter riding her horse.”

“, She's a vary pretty Chris, let me cut right to the chase.

The reason why I'm here is to let you know that there have been

some concerns with the way your handling your teams missions.”

“, I can explain everything sir, the reason is sir, my guy are

over worked it's not safe. Most of my men are only getting a

hours sleep before they have to go back out on patrol sir.”

“, I see, so what can I do to fix this.”

“, Well sir I have some idea's that could fix this issue, the

other generals may not like it thou.”

“, I really don't care what they think, I'm the one who calls

 the shots around here not them.”

“, Yes sir, my idea is instead of having units pulling back to

back shifts with out any sleep, maybe there should be a

mandatory 9 hours off before that unit can go back out on

patrol, I said.”

“, I like the way you think Chris. How ever there is only one

problem with your idea.  The other side will advance if we

don't keep on top of them, the general said.”

“, Not really sir, if we keep the heat on by just constantly

putting units out in the field as other units are ending they

will have little chance to advance on us sir.”

“, Make sure you put that in your report. And Chris I don't

need to tell you to keep your units nose clean. Because if we

have any more problems, then there will be some  changes


     Before our next patrol started, I gathered  my guys together

and had it out with them in away that wasn't too condescending

. Up till this point I had never really had it out with my unit

since taking over the unit from a another commander who was

discharge for sexually assaulting another female officer.

     We gathered all in the mess tent. I begin telling them about

the meeting I just had with the general. Even though the

meeting was largely about me getting a rank change if things

didn't start improving. Some of the guys started shouting out

that the reason why things have been heated with in my ranks is

because of all the back to back patrols.

“, Okay guys listen up, the scoop is if you guys don't start

getting your ass's in gear, then are going to be some changes

in this unit, starting with my ass, as your commander.”

“, Your kidding right sir, the General won't fire your ass

for letting us have some fun, said PVT. Colin.”

“, I really wish I was kidding with you, but I'm not this

is the final notice, the general will fire me, I said.”

“, excuse me sir, not to be argumentative with you, I doubt the

general will fire your ass, said privet Chris.”

“,Well I hope that's the case, but just so you guys are aware

please for god sacks clean up your acts, I'm begging you.”

     I headed back to my tent and laid down on my bed thinking back

to what my younger brother Kyle said just before Mark and I

headed off for our basic training. I laid there with my eyes

closed I could hear Kyle's voice in my head saying Please don't

go! please don't go! over and over again. I could see the tears

pouring down the sides of Kyle's face as I got in to the cab

and headed for the bus station.

     Kyle's last words to me as the cab drove down our street where 

Andy I don't want you to die, Please don't go please don't go.

I looked back to see Kyle standing in the middle of the street

with moms wrapped around him pulling back towards our house as

the cab turned the corner. I sat quietly in the back seat with

my head down.

“, Andy you okay dude, asked Mark.”

“, yea man, I'll be alright once we get to Montreal, I

     The next day I woke to find a paper had been slid under my

tent door. I Picked up the paper and unfolded it and read what

was written on the paper. All I could read was Andy your

heading home for the Canada day long weekend, back your bags

and be at the Air base by 07 hundred.

     For the first time in 5 years I was going to be able to see my

younger brother Kyle, I couldn't wait. Word spreed through the

camp quickly of my leave for the long weekend. Most of the guys

where happy for me, while some of the other guys who I had gone

through the ranks with where told they were not going to be

heading home this time around. To be honest that's the only

thing that sucks about being in the Military is being told you

can't see your family after being apart from them for years at

a time.

     Once my bags where packed I headed down the path to a near by

Jeep that was waiting to take me to the air base where I was

going to be flying out of. What I didn't expect was this to be

my final ride and the last time I would see any of my men.

     I was sitting in my bedroom doing my home work when I heard

mom scream at the top of her lungs. I knew from the sound that

who ever had just called the news wasn't good news. I went down

to the landing and all I saw was mom sitting on the floor

holding the phone to her chest crying Andy no please tell me

this is not happening. It was then I put 2 and 2 together and

thought to myself no this can't be right Andy was heading home

there's no way, they have gotten the wrong number.

     I sat for a minute and then there was a knock at the door, mom

got up off the floor, she opened the door and there standing

there was the Chaplin for the Military and Andy's commanding

officer. Just what I didn't want to hear coming from Andy

commanding officer, “, I'm sorry to have to inform you of the

news but I'm to let you know that Andy was killed earlier today

on his way back to the air base, said the commanding officer.”

     I just sat in shock while my parents hugged one another

tightly in grief.
“, Kyle go to your room, please, my dad said.”

“, dad is Andy alright, I asked.”

“, Kyle please don't make me ask you again, go to your room,

I'll explain later.”

     I headed back up and went right for Andy's bedroom. I closed

the door behind me, and sat on his bed with his picture held

tightly to me chest. I could barely speak a word but some how I

was able to look at his picture.

“, why Andy why did you have to die like this, I cried out at

his picture.”

“, please come home to me please come home to me I kept saying

in a raspy voice.”

     That night my parents and I cried our self's to sleep over the

death of my older brother Andy.
     A week later our city came to a complete stand still as my

brother Andy's body was brought home. The drive from the

airport was the long's ride of my life. I watched as people

lined the street's of our city waving Canadian flags and

signing the national anthem as Andy's body passed by.

     From fire fighters to police our motorcade was either cheered

or saluted in a show of thanks and respect for my brother

Andy's duty and service to his country. 3 days later Andy was

given a regimental funeral. The only way I knew how to horror

my brother was to walk behind his flag draped coffin to the St.

James Cathedral church.
     3 year's later I graduated from high school. I found myself

sitting in the same office as my brother Andy once sat when he

decided to serve his country. I guess you can say I'm following

in my big brother's shoes. But all I'm really doing is going on

a mission to find the heartless coward who stole my brother

away from me 3 years ago.  










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