Meet the RMR’s NCO’s: Sergeant Megal Johnson, CD

Sergeant Megal Johnson, CD.

“Meet the RMR’s NCO’s” is a series where we profile a different NCO each month for readers to get to know the folks who make up the ‘backbone of the army’

Westmount, Quebec – 21 January 2023: Sergeant Megal Johnson grew up in Jamaica and immigrated to Canada as a teenager, where he settled in Montreal’s West Island. He has served four years as a Cadet in Jamaica and has fond memories of going to summer camps in the UK, exciting travel for a young teen!

He didn’t originally intend to join the Infantry, as he had applied for and been accepted as a Vehicle Technician as part of 34 Service Battalion. There was a SNAFU with the recruiting paperwork and he ended up joining the RMR in 1997, and the rest, as they say, is history! His military career has taken him around the world on expeditionary operations and across Canada on domestic operations, such as Op PODIUM which was the security task force for the 2010 Vancouver Olympics. In his civilian career he has been recently promoted to Lieutenant in the Hampstead Public Security. He currently resides in Vaudreuil, Quebec, and he is serving as the Training NCO for the RMR’s Bravo Company.

Corporal Johnson standing guard in Bosnia, 2001

Speaking of training, his list of qualifications is long: Advanced Small Arms, Civil Military Cooperation Operator, Psychological Operations Operator, Riot Control instructor, Small Arms Trainer Operator, Armoured Vehicle Operator, and of course the usual qualifications of an Infantry NCO. He has certainly made the most of his 26-years in the army, and his overseas deployments include:

  • Operation PALLADIUM, Bosnia-Hercegovina, 2001
  • Operation ARCHER (Op ENDURING FREEDOM), Provincial Reconstruction Team, Afghanistan, 2005
  • Operation ATHENA, Afghanistan, 2010

Given the large amount of overseas expeditionary service that he’s seen, it is not surprising that when asked what the coolest thing he’s ever done, he responded: “Training and operating with other countries. It is always interesting to learn how other people accomplish the same mission using different equipment, weapons, uniforms, and vehicles. Working with them gives you perspective and teaches you things.”

Sergeant Johnson briefing the Afghan national army commander at the end of the battle space, Afghanistan, 2011

When asked his favourite memory of serving with the RMR, he replied that it is still ongoing “Just coming into the armoury in general, and sharing knowledge with the talented young people we’ve got coming up through the ranks of the Regiment is inspiring.”

We also asked him what he liked the most and the least about serving in the RMR, and he told us: “My favourite thing about the RMR is the camraderie, the history, and above all the culture. I think the RMR has to be one of the, if not the, most diverse and dynamic units in Canada. We have people from all walks of life serving here and there are no issues – everyone comes together to get the work done.” He couldn’t really land on anything that he ‘likes the least’, but he did express a concern that there’s always a risk of traditions being lost, and he’s glad to be helping the RSM to preserve and maintain them.

A young Corporal Johnson learning how to operate Armoured Fighting Vehicles in Valcartier, 2000.

His advice for young soldiers in the Regiment is “Remember that it is both a privilege and an honour to be able to serve and protect your country. Be grateful for the opportunity and make the most of it.” And his advice for fellow NCO’s and leaders in general is: “It is important to take the time to share knowledge. The only way for younger generations to learn is by us teaching them, so it is important for us to take the time to explain WHY we do the things that we do, not just how to do them.”

Thank you for setting the standard, Sergeant Johnson.

Sergeant Johnson on operations with US Special Forces, Afghanistan, 2011.

Share your thoughts