Brandon, MB. – Members of the Western Hockey League’s Brandon Wheat Kings enjoyed a day to remember Monday when they travelled out to Canadian Forces Bay Shilo and serve as “Soldiers for a Day.”
All twenty-five players, coaches and training staff were making their third trip to CFB Shilo in as many years. In both 2011 and 2012, the Wheat Kings were guests of the 2nd Battalion of the Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry.
The day-long program will give the Wheat Kings an introduction to army life through basic training exercises. The players and coaches will learn about equipment, vehicles and experience a wide range of military skills.
2 PPCLI is a major unit belonging to 1 Canadian Mechanized Brigade Group. 2 PPCLI is made up of soldiers from across Canada. Based in the Light Armoured Vehicle III (LAV III), 2 PPCLI is divided into three rifle companies. Each rifle company is made up of three platoons and a headquarters element. In addition to the 2nd Battalion, CFB Shilo is also home to another major brigade unit, First Regiment, Royal Canadian Horse Artillery.
The PPCLI has a rich and colourful history and received numerous battle honours during World War One and World War Two. The second battalion is an important part of that tradition. Raised specifically for service in Korea it has been kept on strength ever since. The Battalion's actions in Korea, saw it awarded the United States Presidential Unit Citation-a unique honour among Canadian units. The Battalion has also participated in numerous peacekeeping operations, including in the Medak Pocket in Croatia in 1993, where it earned the Commander-in-Chief's Commendation. 2 PPCLI has a strong connection to its history and traditions. Additionally, the Battalion has a strong link to Manitoba, forged over its 35 years of service in the province.
The Wheat Kings have had a long standing relationship with CFB Shilo. In addition to hosting the 2010 MasterCard Memorial Cup and helping to raise money for military families through the sale of their game worn jerseys on opening night, the Western Hockey League club has hosted annual Remembrance Day games for over thirty years.
As well, through the generous support of MTS Connect and its three local dealers, military families from CFB Shilo have the opportunity to attend Wheat King games this season as part of the “Hometown Heroes” program.
Following what should be an exciting day at the Base, the Wheat Kings will return to the ice on Tuesday to continue preparations for this weekend’s two home games against Portland and Red Deer on Friday and Saturday nights.
Tickets to both games, as well as all remaining Wheat King home games will go on sale first thing Monday morning at the Keystone Centre box office. Fans can also order online at www.keystonecentre.com or by calling 726-3555.