In 1973, at a meeting of the Royal Canadian Air Force Association, it was decided to lend support to the Canadian Cadet Organization and thus, 832 Ottawa Twillick Squadron was formed.
The Squadron, born in September 1974, was supported by 410 Wing of the Association.
In its inaugural year the Squadron met at the Boys and Girls Club on McArthur Avenue, but soon moved to the former Rockcliffe military base (which was still a very active Air Force base at the time). Over the summer of 2009 the buildings on the former Rockliffe military base were closed and the Squadron moved to Clarence-Rockland. The Squadron began training in October 2009 at the Carrefour Jeunesse Public School. The Squadron spent two years at the Carrefour Jeunesse Public School before moving to the Jean-Marc Lalonde Community Centre in September 2011.
In the spring of 2010, after serving for nearly 36 years as the Squadron’s only Sponsoring Committee, 410 Wing handed over the role of Sponsoring Committee to a Parents Committee made up of parents of the cadets and members of the Clarence-Rockland community.
In May 2010 the Squadron was reclassified as a bilingual Squadron and the name was officialy changed to 832 Twillick Clarence-Rockland Squadron.
2416 “Twillick” Aircraft Control & Warning Squadron (AC&W) (Reserve) was formed in Ottawa on 15 July 1950 and was directly accountable to Air Defense Command. Like other AC&W Squadrons within the Auxiliary Air Force, 2416 Sqn was equipped with the AMES-11C radar and its associated equipment, which was mounted on trucks so that it could be easily transported to various locations when and if they were needed.
The Sqn was initially located downtown but moved to RCAF Station Uplands in 1958. It was disbanded on 31 December 1961 because their manual operations were no longer required to assist the Regular Force AC&W Squadrons and their new SAGE system.
“Aeterno Vigilare Pretium Salutis” (Eternal vigilance is the price of salvation).
“Twillick”? What’s a Twillick?
The Twillick, or Greater Yellowlegs, is known in French as a “Grand Chevalier” and in Latin as “Tringa Melanoleuca”.
The Twillick is a medium-sized (roughly 36 cm in height) shorebird with distinctively long and bright yellow legs. Its diet consists of small fish and water insects. Once a gamebird, it is now a protected species.
The Twillick may be found from Newfoundland to Nova Scotia, as well as along the British Columbia and Alaska coasts. It usually winters from New York State to the Gulf of Mexico along the Atlantic coast, and from California to Central America on the Pacific coast. Vagrant individuals have been spotted in Europe and in Russia, and as far and wide as Japan, Micronesia and South Africa.
The name “Twillick” comes from Newfoundland, where the terms “Twilleck”, “Twillet”, “Twillic”, “Twillig”, “Twillik” and “Twillock” have also been used. In fact, the term “Twillock” was recorded in that province as early as 1620!
Twillicks are a perfect nuisance to hunters, as they keep themselves out of range and alarm other birds with cries of “twillick, twillick”. They also raise the alarm by picking up rocks or branches and dropping them in water (as the Twillick on our Squadron Crest is doing). This made it a perfect mascot for a Radar Squadron, since their job is to warn others of the presence of an enemy!