OTTAWA— Captain Tristan Armstrong of Gore Bay joined the Canadian military in 2009, looking for a way to put his engineering education to use while serving his country and in pursuit of adventure.
The son of Maureen and Blaine Armstrong, Captain Armstrong grew up in Gore Bay where he attended C.C. McLean Public School and then Manitoulin Secondary School. Guelph University was Captain Armstrong’s postsecondary choice, where he obtained his bachelor’s degree in energy systems engineering.
“There are lots of civilian engineering companies across Canada, but I wanted to go on adventures—to travel,” Captain Armstrong explained to The Expositor.
Joining the military in 2009 and completing his training in 2010, Captain Armstrong joined just as Canada was withdrawing from Afghanistan and hasn’t yet had the opportunity to serve overseas, though through his new post he works closely with visitors from across the globe.
“Previously I was with the 14 Wing Greenwood (Royal Canadian Air Force base) in Nova Scotia,” said Captain Armstrong. “I was an information service flight manager—our job was to ensure that anything with an IP address was kept working. In 2014 I started in Ottawa with the Canadian Armed Forces Directorate Foreign Liaison.”
Through his role Captain Armstrong acts as an interface for the attaché foreign military working at embassies in Ottawa.
“I have a docket of countries I represent for the Armed Forces and provide requested information, set up meetings and arrange logistics for visiting foreign VIPs such as foreign chiefs of defense,” said Captain Armstrong. “It is a very different role than I have ever done before or probably will in the future—it is unique.”
Captain Armstrong comes from a family with military connections including his grandfather on his mother’s side who trained at the Canadian Forces Base in Kingston (the same as Captain Armstrong) and was a signaler in WWII, as well as his great grandfather who was a lineman in WWI.
Captain Armstrong traditionally spends Remembrance Day visiting his grandfather, but with his new role he will be spending this year in Ottawa at the parade at the National War Memorial.