Two long-serving Army Reservists have received Certificates of Meritorious Service from Her Majesty’s Lord Lieutenant of Cornwall, Colonel Edward Bolitho OBE.
Warrant Officer 2nd Class Andrew McNair, who works as a site manager and foreman for a small building firm, has spent a full 40 years in the Reserves while Staff Sergeant Jonathan Light has 24 years under his belt.
Both are attached to 232 (Cornwall) Port Squadron in Bodmin, a detachment of 165 Port & Maritime Regiment, Royal Logistic Corps, and have been commended for their “dedication and selfless commitment”.
Andrew delivers training across the whole of the regiment, from junior recruits to senior officers.
He makes a point of mentoring and encouraging the younger arrivals. “I just love to see the end product and know that I’ve made a difference,” he said.
“Sometimes youngsters can be over-confident; sometimes they’ll be really worried they’re going to fail. Or maybe they’re just not sure that they want to be here.
“I find out what their concerns are and give them the confidence to progress. I love it when youngsters come up to me after they’ve passed a course or been promoted and thank me for the help and advice I’ve given them.”
“I feel very lucky and honoured to have been nominated for this award,” he said. It’s been a brilliant career – I’ve been to Afghanistan twice, Ukraine and Georgia. I’ve got a completely different circle of friends now because of my time in the Reserves and we all keep in touch.”
Jonathan is employed as a Cadet Administrative Assistant with Cornwall ACF. He added: “It’s great to watch cadets develop and move up through the ranks, especially when they’ve had challenges or problems to overcome. It’s a lovely feeling to see them succeed and know that you’ve helped them in some way.”
Both Reservists received their awards during a ceremony at the Alverton Hotel, Truro. Others to be awarded the Certificate of Meritorious Service, which is only one level below national honours such as the MBE, were:
- Lieutenant Alistair Harper, a PhD student and father of four. Since taking command of the Bude Detachment of Cornwall ACF in 2016, he has transformed it into “the best detachment in the county”, with cadet numbers likely to reach 40 by the end of this year.
- Flight Lieutenant Christopher Gill, of 1942 (Wadebridge) Squadron, Air Training Corps. He has introduced a programme of weapon instruction, shooting and coaching that has led to the cadets achieving exceptional results in national shooting competitions.
- Second Lieutenant Ryan Pentecost, of Falmouth, a Detachment Commander with Cornwall ACF. As the County’s Navigation and Adventure Training Officer, he plans and organises Ten Tors training, encouraging cadets to work as a team and to become team leaders.