I attended C3SK's "OPERATION DEAD BY DAWN" in Belleville on the 30th of June. Aside from being one of the best events I have ever attended, unfortunately something very disturbing went down.
One of the players there was dressed in full CADPAT combats, and while there is nothing wrong with that, what they were trying to pull was unacceptable. Noticing they were dressed with a matching nametag, flag and officer's epaulet, but not knowing what to think of the "designer" beard sported by the individual, I asked them if they were in the Forces, to which I got an affirmative reply. I then inquired what Unit, and I was told "I'm in QYRANG", which is short for the Queen's York Rangers.
I left it at that not wanting to dig anymore - I was there to play airsoft, not police potential posers.... I did bring it up with the game host and between him, a number of staff here on ASC and a helpful Sgt @ the QYRANG Orderly Room, I have confirmed that this person is NOT a serving member of the Queen's York Rangers. Additionally, there is no one by that name in the Canadian Forces, period after a search of our internal email system.
So this is a polite reminder to all players that while it is perfectly fine to get dude'd up in an impression of a soldier from a specific Unit, it is completely crossing the line to start claiming that you ARE that soldier, especially when your appearance brings discredit to the uniform as this individual's did.
For reference, it is an offence under the Criminal Code of Canada to impersonate a member of the Canadian Forces;
Unlawful use of military uniforms or certificates
419. Every one who without lawful authority, the proof of which lies on him,
(a) wears a uniform of the Canadian Forces or any other naval, army or air force or a uniform that is so similar to the uniform of any of those forces that it is likely to be mistaken therefor,
(b) wears a distinctive mark relating to wounds received or service performed in war, or a military medal, ribbon, badge, chevron or any decoration or order that is awarded for war services, or any imitation thereof, or any mark or device or thing that is likely to be mistaken for any such mark, medal, ribbon, badge, chevron, decoration or order,
(c) has in his possession a certificate of discharge, certificate of release, statement of service or identity card from the Canadian Forces or any other naval, army or air force that has not been issued to and does not belong to him, or
(d) has in his possession a commission or warrant or a certificate of discharge, certificate of release, statement of service or identity card, issued to an officer or a person in or who has been in the Canadian Forces or any other naval, army or air force, that contains any alteration that is not verified by the initials of the officer who issued it, or by the initials of an officer thereto lawfully authorized,
is guilty of an offence punishable on summary conviction.
R.S., c. C-34, s. 377.
So I am putting this out there as an official heads up to Game Hosts, field owners, and players in the Ontario region; the person by the name of "Richard Boelens" who goes by the handle "DarkAngel" here on ASC is NOT a member of the Canadian Forces, is NOT an officer in the Queen's York Rangers, and does NOT represent the CF in any fashion.
Richard Boelens: NOT an Officer in the Canadian Forces
So in summary, remember that Airsoft is a sport, not too serious, let's keep it light. If you have PRIOR service in the CF that's great, but it's not the same as being a CURRENTLY serving member. If you are a fireman or police officer, that's awesome and hats off to you, but you are not in the CF etc etc etc... Let's all have respect for our serving Canadian Forces members playing alongside us and ensure that the dignity of service remains untarnished.