Official military portrait of male soldier in front of Canada Flag

Master Corporal Dany “Dan” Drapeau-Guay was chosen to participate in the 2021 Remembrance Day Sentry Program. He is one of six Canadian soldiers and Royal Canadian Mounted Police to be given this honour. Before the Nov. 11 ceremony in Ottawa, he will meet with many dignitaries. (Submitted photo)

Petawawa soldier chosen for 2021 Sentry Program

By Patricia Leboeuf

Posted on Thursday November 4, 2021

Master Corporal (MCpl) Dany “Dan” Drapeau-Guay was chosen to stand sentry at the Remembrance Day ceremony in Ottawa.

He is one of six Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) and Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) members in the 2021 Remembrance Day Sentry Program.

“The Remembrance Day Sentry Program publicly acknowledges the dedication, effort, professionalism, and performance of those who serve Canada and all Canadians,” said Major-General Lise Bourgon, Acting Commander, Military Personnel Command, in a press release. “We congratulate those selected this year for the honour of representing your country at the National War Memorial on Remembrance Day.”

An RCMP member and representatives from different military branches are selected from a pool of Canadian professionals and given an important role during the national Remembrance Day ceremony in Ottawa. All who are chosen are given this prestigious position due to their dedication, professionalism and performance in service to Canada. They are selected based on criteria such as deployment experience, community involvement, physical fitness and their record of conduct.

MCpl Drapeau-Guay has been given the “Special Operations Forces Sentry” title and represents the Canadian Special Operations Training Centre in Petawawa.

“It is nice to be given a different purpose than from what we usually do in the regiment,” he said. “I’m glad that I have been chosen for this.”

For him, Remembrance Day is personal. While deployed in Afghanistan, he attended 22 ramp ceremonies, but it truly hit him when he lost a friend.

“In 2015, one of our guys was killed in action,” he said. “He was a very close friend and a really big mentor to the whole Regiment.”

He still stays in contact with families of the fallen and tries to make sure that they are doing well, and maintains links with fellow soldiers, some of whom may be struggling at this time of year. He knows firsthand the sacrifices soldiers must make for Canadian interests at home and abroad.

“It will be an honour for me to stand there and be strong at the monument,” said MCpl Drapeau-Guay.

Those who will stand with him include Petty Officer Second Class Jacob Russell, Personnel Coordination Centre (Pacific), Esquimalt, B.C.; Corporal Justin George, 1 Combat Engineer Regiment, Edmonton, Alta.; Corporal William Jodoin, 21 Aerospace Control & Warning Squadron, North Bay, Ont.; Lieutenant (Navy) Debra Fredericks, Canadian Forces Trauma Training Centre (West), Vancouver, B.C.; RCMP Corporal Rielly Knock, F Division, Saskatoon, Sask. and Corporal. Nick Kerr, Canadian Armed Forces Transition Group, Edmonton, is the special guest of the Acting Chief of the Defence Staff General Wayne Eyre.

“There must be acknowledgement for the sacrifices of past and current members and the families as well,” said the Master Corporal.

“We are in an era where mental health has been upfront, and by remembering all of this, it makes us strong as a force so we are able to accomplish what is asked of us.”

The Remembrance Day Sentry Program was created in 1998 to publicly recognize outstanding Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) members from the Regular and the Reserve Force and the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP).

“The sentries chosen for this year’s Remembrance Day Sentry Program continue to epitomize the very best of the Canadian Armed Forces and the Royal Canadian Mounted Police,” noted General Eyre

MCpl Drapeau-Guay was originally posted to the reserve unit, Le Régiment de Maisonneuve in Montreal. Shortly after this posting, he decided to join the Regular Force and was posted to 3rd Battalion, Royal 22 ieme Regiment, Charlie Company as a C-9 gunner, which included a deployment in 2006 to Afghanistan as part of a close protection team.

On his return from Afghanistan, he decided to apply to the Canadian Special Operations Forces Command (CANSOFCOM) and completed selection in 2009 and was loaded to the Special Operations Basic Qualification (SOBQ) Course in 2010. Afterwards, he deployed numerous times with the Canadian Special Operations Regiment, including North Africa, the Middle East and the Caribbean. As a highly capable member, he has dedicated a significant amount of time to develop tactics, techniques and procedures regarding the employment of support weapons within CANSOFCOM.