Message from the Ombudsman (December 17, 2015)

Progress Update on Ombudsman’s Report into 1974 Valcartier Cadet Grenade Incident

On July 28, 2015 I released a report into the treatment of Army Cadets affected by a deadly grenade explosion which occurred at a Cadet Summer Camp on Canadian Armed Forces Base Valcartier, Quebec in July 1974.

The report focussed on the treatment of those cadets affected by the deadly explosion which killed six and injured dozens.

I made two recommendations to the Minister of National Defence and Department of National Defence. Both were accepted.

Tangible steps which have been taken since my report was released include the following:

  • Two of the key individuals involved in bringing the impact of the incident to the attention of my office were briefed by senior members of the Canadian Armed Forces on the practical measures to be immediately undertaken to help affected cadets. This was done the morning of my report’s release.
  • The Canadian Armed Forces has developed a screening tool that can be used by family physicians to determine the medical needs of those impacted.
  • The Canadian Armed Forces has appointed a Case Manager, who will now be responsible for managing medical assessments and the way forward in assisting the impacted individuals.

I am pleased to report that the Canadian Armed Forces has made good progress on connecting with former cadets and Canadian Armed Forces members who may have been impacted by the incident.

On the day of the incident, D Company had 155 members: 135 cadets and 20 staff cadets and officers.  To date, the Canadian Armed Forces and former cadets themselves have been unable to locate an additional 25 former cadets who were likely impacted by the incident.

If you are a survivor of the 1974 incident, or know someone who may have been affected, please call the Canadian Armed Forces help line at 1-844-800 8566 or email

My office will continue to monitor the progress made by the Department of National Defence and Canadian Armed Forces and will provide updates through our website and Twitter.

Gary Walbourne

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