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Nothing Quite Like It!

Heroes Remember

Nothing Quite Like It!

Just prior to going over in ’06, I was promoted to the rank of master corporal and I was placed in 5 Platoon B Company and in January of 2006 we were on a flight headed over the pond to experience something like I never thought in any way that I would ever experience. I never thought that I would be encased in anything that I experienced over there. We landed in Kandahar airfield and I just remember getting off the plane and it was just that impact of that heat and getting off the plane on the tarmac and it was like wow! This is something else! I never been to a desert type environment so that in itself was just a shock. Once we got off the plane and we organized ourselves in Kandahar airfield we did some engagements with the personnel that we’d be relieving and getting our weapons all checked out and just briefings and then we packed up our stuff and it was B Company that was encased into the PRT down in Kandahar city and I remember everybody talking before we headed out about these golden arches and IED alley and you just start hearing stories and, you know, it creates this initial feeling of anxiety which I couldn’t relate with before. I didn’t understand what anxiety was, I took it sort of like an adrenalin, keeping myself aware because when we initially jumped in the vehicles to roll out to head down to the PRT in Kandahar airfield, oh sorry in Kandahar city, it was just like wow this is something else. Like I am going through these poignant spots where like you hear about it on the news, you see it on TV but now it’s like I am going to experience this. And I mean we made it through. There wasn’t any incidents but I just remember that initial rush of adrenalin and it made me feel alive. It was like a powerful drug that I just, like I liked it! I loved it and I wanted more of it.

Collin speaks about his first impression upon landing in Afghanistan and the adrenalin rush it gave him to get the mission started.

Collin Fitzgerald

Mr. Collin Fitzgerald was born in Ottawa March 14, 1979. At the age of 8, Collin’s parents encouraged him to join the Cadet Program leading him towards becoming a reservist. At the age of 17 and with the inspiration of World War Two and Korea Veterans, Collin made the decision to transfer over to Regular Force joining the Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry. He rose to the rank of Master Corporal after his 15 years of military service. In 2000 he attended battle school in Wainwright, Alberta, then posted to Winnipeg. In September of that same year he accepted a deployment to Bosnia. In 2006, Mr. Fitzgerald attached himself to 5 Platoon B Company and deployed to Afghanistan under the regiment, Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry. Experiencing intense combat during his time in Afghanistan, Mr. Fitzgerald was presented the Sacrifice Medal for his services and courageous acts of duty towards his fellow comrades. Upon discharge from the military, Mr. Fitzgerald suffered with PTSD and with the help of many supporters he was able to reintegrate into civilian life. He presently is highly involved in giving back to the military community and is a strong advocate for Highway of Heroes and many other service related initiatives. Mr. Fitzgerald now resides in Kingston, Ontario.

Meta Data
Veterans Affairs Canada
September 27, 2017
Person Interviewed:
Collin Fitzgerald
War, Conflict or Mission:
Canadian Armed Forces
Canadian Armed Forces
Princess Patricia's Canadian Light Infantry (PPCLI)

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