Canadian Armed Forces Reservist Bombardier Matthew Fairbank and his civilian employer Greg Moskal were recognized at an Army Reserve Recognition Day event in the city last Wednesday.
Kathleen Gibson, representing Yorkton-Melville MP Garry Breitkreuz, said reservists deserve a pat on the back, noting “the sacrifice they make to keep Canadians safe.” She said it is important to have “recognition of the important contribution to our country.”
Yorkton MLA Greg Ottenbreit picked up on the theme of saying thanks, expanding that to business people such as Moskal who allow the time off for reservists such as Fairbank to be active.
That said Ottenbreit added reservists give more through not only their time but “too often of their lives.”
James Wilson, Mayor of Yorkton said Canadian military personnel have also stood up for principles this country believes in.
“That character lives on through you today,” he said, adding “… it is very important that we support you as a community.”
Fairbank said he appreciated his employer being recognized.
“My boss puts up with a lot of stuff,” he said, adding when there is a course to go on “… I just ask him and he lets me go.”
As an example Fairbank recently took a month to participate in a march of 50,000 soldiers in The Netherlands, and will soon depart on a three-week Airborne Parachute Course.
Moskal said it is good to be thanked publicly.
“I appreciate it,” he said.
Moskal said it is not always convenient to give Fairbank the time, but he does it.
“A lot of times it’s trying,” he said, adding that it helps that most of the time he is given “fair warning” to make arrangements.
There have been times, such as the flood situation in Winnipeg a couple of years ago Fairbank was called out to help and had to leave a job site in Ontario.
“At times he’s gone and I have no say in it,” he said.
But Moskal said the sacrifice is worth it to keep Fairbank who is now a 10-year employee with Moskal Mechanical.
“It’s hard to replace good employees,” he said. “It’s hard to find any employees.”
As for his being a reservist he said he does it as a way to serve the country, adding he enjoys what it has to offer.