by Ken Hirter
On Saturday April 28th 2018 I had the pleasure to cover the 23rd Field Ambulance Change of Command Ceremony from Major Bryan Giles, CD to Lieutenant-Colonel Thomas Nguyen, CD.
This auspicious event began with the seating of the guests and opening remarks by the Master of Ceremony.
Since 1900, 23 (Hamilton) Field Ambulance Change has existed in various forms and under difference names. With the increasing awareness of the value that the Medical Services offer to the military, the two units were amalgamated Between WW l and WW Il, on September 1, 1939, into the 5th Field Ambulance. After WW ll the name was changed to the 16 Medical Company then once more to 23 (Hamilton) Medical Company and now renamed 23 (Hamilton) Field Ambulance. Once solely located in Hamilton, the unit now permanently staff’s medical platoons and detachment in Hamilton, London and Windsor, supporting 16 Reserve units throughout 31 CBG and Southwestern Ontario.
Outgoing Commanding Officer: Major Bryan Giles CD RN BScN CEN ENC (C) TCRN
Major Gilles enrolled in the Canadian Armed Forces Reserve in 1985 as an infantry soldier Esses and Kent Scottish in Windsor, Ontario. Major Giles was deployed to Cyprus as part of a UN tasking (UNFICYP) followed by an extensive Military History. Since December 2014, Major Giles has been the Commanding Officer of 23 (Hamilton) Field Ambulance.
Major Giles and his wife Christine have been foster parents for the Windsor Essex Children’s Aid Society since 2004. They live in Amherstburg, Ontario with their 3 children, Sara, Arta, and Sean.
Incoming Commanding Officer:Lieutenant-Colonel Thomas A.Nguyen, CD, MSc
Lieutenant-Colonel Thomas A.Nguyen was born in Diagon, Vietnam immigrating to Canada and settling in Toronto in 1980. With an extensive military service and an enthusiastic desire to contribute to his country he joined the Canadian Forces under the Reserve Entry-Scheme Officer (RESO) program in 1993 as a Health Care Administration (HCA) He is honoured to be given his second command of 23 (Hamilton) Field Ambulance, and is looking forward to be working with the excellent team at the unit.
The program was well executed and suited to the formality of the occasion. Closing remarks by the Master of Ceremony was a fitting tribute to both of these fine upstanding men. This was followed by an All Ranks reception.
Our thanks are extended to Ed Stewart who brought this to our attention. It was a wonderful experience that I had the honour to attend and record. Connecting and Bridging our Community and Communities and Beyond.