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The Cadet Unit History
Dedicated, Disciplined, Committed, Patriotic are ways of describing the Kingston College Cadet Unit of the Jamaica Combined Cadet Force.

The Cadet Force in Jamaica can be regarded as another youth movement run, in this case, primarily on a military basis. Its varied and interesting program has through the years offered thousands of boys then, a healthy atmosphere in which to satisfy their spirit of adventure. Most of the activities are of proven and practical values. For example, air training, where individuals not only are exposed for career development, but also a chance of knowing Jamaica from a different view. Other areas of exposure are Sea and Land training which would include radio and network communications, and last but not least music, both band and drums.

Started in 1940 as a sub Unit of the then functioning Army Training Corp in Jamaica with 20 boys. This "PINT SIZE" Unit excelled for over 3 years. Based on its functions and existence when it was being considered, Maj. DeCordova, consulted the Principal, Bishop P. Gibson on the involvement of K.C. as a pioneer Unit for the Army and Air Cadet Force.

In November of 1943, The Army Training Corp was incorporated into the newly-formed Army and Air Cadet Force with KC on parade. It was Bishop Gibson's dream that KC should be the pace setter in all aspects of endeavours.

Within Kingston College, the ideals of the Cadet Force have therefore complimented those of the school.

The AACF, unlike its predessor, the ATC, expanded its training and involvement of other schools across the nation. KC has however, maintained a standard of involvement which surpasses all other schools. This enthusiasm can be attributed to the quality and committed officers who have seen to the involvement and development of KC. Such are the likes of Lieutenants J. Burges, M. Caserly, E. Frater and H. Chapman during the period 1943 to 1949, and the champion of them all, Major Stafford "Zacky" Isaacs-Henry. For twenty selfless and glorious years he distinguished himself as the man at the helm.

The unit distinguished itself at the first NCOs Course held at Drax Hall, and again at Gibraltar Camp, Mona. Route marches and hikes to New Castle, Wareika Hills and Palm Beach among other places. Soon cadets were participating more intimately in the life of the school, parading at Chapel Services, Prize Givings, Patronal Festivals and other important functions. The annual Inspection became primarily a school function, attended by the Headmaster, staff , students and parents. Competitions have been keenly contested and performances have usually been of a highly creditable standard. Much hard work was put in at the NCO's Course held at Dinthill in 1958 where the team brought home their first trophy, The Esso Cup, awarded to the best team of Cadets at the course.


As the Cadet Force gained wider recognition, it was invited to parade on many public and ceremonial occasions both in Jamaica and abroad. On such occasions, individuals as well as detachments from Kingston College represented the Force with distinction. In 1953 when the Cadet Standard was first trooped, it was received by the OC. Lt. Isaac- Henry. This was also the year of the Coronation and three KC cadets were numbered among the Jamaican Contingent to the celebration in Britain.

1955 - During the "Jamaica 300" celebrations, Sgts. P Maxwell and N. Hall were escorts to the Colours in honour of H.R.H. Princess Margaret's visit.

1958 - The Unit increased its establishment to one hundred cadets which included the formation of the Drum Corp.

1960 - C.S.M. W. Tinglin (The senior NCO along with eight others) attended the Centenary celebrations in Britain. The officer in charge was Maj. Isaac-Henry.

Capt. K.B. Gordon of KC, led a contingent of KC Cadets (CQMS A. Chung, D/Maj. K. McGhie, Sgt.s W. Dwyer, E. DeLisser and Cpl. C. Phillips) to the All Islands Camp in Trinidad. The visit was sponsored from funds raised by the Unit. Incidentally, this visit started the annual Cadet Exchange programme with Canada and the other Caribbean Islands.

1965 - When the Governor General presented Sgt. B. Pitter of KC with the Duke of Edinburgh Award again for Jamaica this was a first. First time in Jamaica. First Cadet and the first boy to have received this award. Fittingly at this time with the most outstanding cadet in the Island, KC won the Ruel Vaz Trophy for the first time.

1968 - The Unit won the Ruel Vaz Trophy for the second time. The Unit increased its establishment to 150 as a brass Band was added to the existing Drum Corp.

1971 - The Unit won the Ruel Vaz Trophy for the third time.

1972 - The Unit lost its Band due to theft of most of its instruments and so the school decided to convert the Band room into a regular class room.

Claude Oakley appointed the first R.S.M. for the Cadet Force.

1974 - The Unit again won the Ruel Vaz Trophy with a strength of 120 Cadets and Other Ranks on Parade.

1975 - Michael Bennett appointed the first Colour Sergeant in the Force at the Adult Rank level.

1981 - The Cadet Force change status from an all male organization to include girls and from a three to a six Battalion structure.

Since this time the Unit has not achieved much as a Unit, however, members continue to achieve individually on the academics and social areas of their lives.

1982 - C.S.M. T. Thompson gained his Private pilot License through the Cadet Force.


OFFICERS COMMANDING AND OTHER OFFICERS OF THE UNIT THROUGH THE YEARS:

OC Lt. J. Burgess 1943 - 1945

OC Lt. M. Casserly
Lt. E. Frater 1945 - 1949
Lt. H. Chapman
OC Maj. S.W. Isaacs-Henry 1949 - 1969
Lt. W. Whyte
F/O Lt. F. Anderson
OC Lt. H. Critchlow Sept 1969 - Dec. 1969
OC Maj. C. Phillips Jan. 1970 - 1975
OC Maj.. L. Codling 1975 - 1978
Lt. D. Hinds
Lt. D. Tomlinson
OC Maj. C. Oakley 1978 - 1981
OC Capt. M. Bennett 1981 - 1994
Lt. K. Grossett
Lt. C. Errar
Lt. O. Richards
OC *Lt. H. Thompson 1994 - 1995
OC Lt. P. Gibson 1995 - 1996
OC Maj. R. Dobbs 1996 - 1997
OC Lt. D. Rattigan 1997 - 1998
OC *Lt. H. Thompson 1998-1999
OC Capt. B. Miller 1999- Present
Lt. M. Richards
Lt. R. McFarlane
Lt. W. Howell
Lt. P.A.Gray

Lt. Elvis Wilson

1999 - The unit acquired a new set of drum corp instrument courtesy of the KCOBA (New York) chapter, Past Cadet and other Old Boys.


History of Ludwig
In 1958 the Unit purchased instruments for its newly formed Drum Corp through donations from the Old Boys Association. In the midst was a Bass Drum affectionately called "Ludwig".

The bass drum is the most important instrument in a drum corp. This drum was made in England in 1957. This drum has remained functioning to this day bearing the insignia of the Army and Air Cadet Force.
One of the largest Bass drum existing in Jamaica, it has remained the pride of many parades and functions attended by the cadets. When played properly, it produces a beat for the marching troops that keep all on parade as well as spectators awake and aware. Being rope tensioned, whenever the skin bursts (which is rarely)a replacement has to be ordered from England.

Ludwig has had Queen Elizabeth smile on her visit to Jamaica in 1962 when Jamaica received its Independence and the Unit was on Parade. Many cadets who joined the Unit in the past recall times when Inspections are taking place and the Inspecting Officer takes too much time to inspect and cadets begin to faint and feel weary, a sudden beat from the Bass Drum gives them new life. One cadet recalls a fund raising route march through Harbour View with the Corp playing. The Bass drummer was a very tall and fat individual who had to be cautioned many times by the home owners that their home was being affected and at one time was given extra money by a man to play a bit softer.

Many memories, far too much to recall, centered around this instrument, that in the year 2000, when it was replaced sad faces appear among the past Cadets. It is the Units intention to keep this drum in playing condition in order to give the present and future Cadets a realistic legacy of where the Corp and the Unit is coming from.

Having retired Ludwig, he now takes his pride of place beside the saluting dais on our annual inspection and makes the link with the current crop of cadets and the old guard.

Ludwig is dead long live Ludwig.