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8 Wing Trenton thanks community for support during COVID-19 quarantine at base

Letter of thanks to the community, from Col Ryan Deming, Commander 8 Wing/CFB Trenton, for the support received during the recent operation to repatriate and quarantine Canadians impacted by COVID-19 in China and Japan.


– Cpl Ken Beliwicz, 8 Wing Imaging

From 31 January to 28 February 2020, 8 Wing/CFB Trenton was involved in an unprecedented operation to return Canadians home from China and Japan who had been impacted by the outbreak of COVID-19 (Coronavirus).

At every step of the way members of our local communities including the City of Quinte West, City of Belleville, the Municipality of Brighton, Prince Edward County and Hastings County were behind the base and the members of Task Force-PARATUS, which was established to bring our fellow Canadians home in an effective, safe and dignified manner.

For a month, over 150 Canadian Armed Forces members worked to support over 100 members of the Public Health Agency of Canada, Ontario Emergency Medical Assistance Team, Canadian Red Cross and Canada Border Services Agency to evacuate Canadians and establish a quarantine area at 8 Wing/CFB Trenton and subsequently at the NAV Canada Centre in Cornwall.

Together we supported almost 700 Canadian evacuees during their quarantine in Trenton, and also assisted with the reception and travel to Cornwall of approximately 200 people from the Diamond Princess cruise ship.

Col Ryan Deming, Commander 8 Wing/CFB Trenton

Working with our partners, our Task Force employed the most stringent safety protocols in order to minimize risk to ourselves, our guests, our families and our communities. While everyone was released from quarantine at Trenton having shown no signs of COVID-19, the safety measures we employed were absolutely critical for the quarantine to be effective.

While I know this time was concerning for some in the community, I am pleased that there was no stigmatization displayed towards our guests in quarantine and their privacy was respected throughout as they went through this stressful and difficult time.

In fact, members of the Task Force (myself included) were touched by the outpouring of support from people near and far who called and emailed with offers to help, as well as donations of cards and other well-wishes. While the nature of the quarantine order limited our team’s ability to accept all offers, on behalf of the Task Force and our Task Force partners like the Red Cross, the gestures were taken to heart as a true reflection of the generosity, teamwork and compassion of our communities. We also thank the many businesses and groups who offered support to members of the Task Force during the operation. Despite the long hours, the morale-building donations helped us succeed in our mission.

Finally, I wish to thank our leaders in the community, including our large family of 8 Wing Trenton Honorary Colonels past and present, our political leaders at all levels and business leaders who came together to support this operation in any way they could. You all epitomize what it means to be Canadian.

8 Wing/CFB Trenton will always be here to support the Government of Canada and Canadians whether it be overseas or here at home.

I thank you all for your continued support- we cannot deliver on these operations without the outstanding support of our communities.

Colonel Ryan Deming, OMM, CD
8 Wing/CFB Trenton/Task Force-PARATUS

Filed Under: Letters and OpinionNews from Everywhere Else

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