Salmon Arm cadet earns VIP experience with CF-18 Hornet

Cadet Warrant Officer First Class Nicholas Lourens pursuing career on flight path

Cadet Warrant Officer First Class Nicholas Lourens is having a summer he will never forget.

On Friday, the 17-year-old Lourens, a cadet with 222 Shushwap Royal Canadian Air Cadet Squadron, acquired his private pilot’s licence at the Canadian Flight Centre (CFC) at Boundary Bay Airport, south of Vancouver, where he’s been learning to fly. In addition, Lourens was selected to have a VIP experience with a Canadian Armed Forces CF-18 Hornet demonstration jet.

Lourens was selected for the F-18 VIP experience based on his performance to date in a flying scholarship course he and only 33 other cadets from throughout B.C. receives from the Department of National Defence. The scholarship covers his flying lessons, accommodation and travel.

Read more: Okanagan Air Cadet challenges cadet program on gendered policy

Read more: Hundreds of cadets converge in Okanagan

Read more: Air cadet squadron celebrates 25 years

“My dad took me to Salmon Arm Airport one day after daycare when I was four years old,” says Lourens in a July 22 media release from the Comox Cadet Flying Training Centre. “I looked at a plane and I thought ‘This is it!’ I wanted to be a pilot since then. That is why I joined cadets and now I’m achieving that dream thanks to this program.”

Lourens, whose goal is to one day fly a Bell CH-146 Griffon helicopter with the Royal Canadian Air Force, says he always felt a little ‘weird’ being so passionate about planes and flying. That changed when he joined the cadet program.

“I didn’t feel weird in cadets. I joined for the flying, but the best part is the friends I have made along the way. It feels cool to have found them and I have made some great buddies,” says Lourens.

Lourens recently graduated from Salmon Arm Secondary and wants to pursue a career in aviation.


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here


Just Posted

UPDATE: Algae bloom in Shuswap Lake determined to be non-toxic

Interior Health maintains people should not drink untreated water

4 inmates at Okanagan Correctional Centre granted early release due to COVID-19

The move, which impacts offenders serving intermittent sentences, is to prevent spread of virus

Canadian police to make home visits to enforce mandatory quarantine for travellers

Police forces have been asked to help verify Canadians are complying with the Quarantine Act

COVID-19: Dairy association wants Okanagan-Shuswap milk supply to flow smoothly

Changes to consumer demand from pandemic have left thousands of litres of B.C. milk being dumped

VIDEO: Easter festivities may be scaled back, but it can still be a fun holiday

COVID-19 circumstances have dictated that the holidays may not be perfect

Accused’s house arrest conditions no different than what residents self-isolating face: Kamloops judge

A Kamloops woman’s strict house arrest terms are no more onerous than self-isolation experienced by many, judge said

Princeton woman sits out pandemic in ‘cheese heaven’

‘We are surrounded here by fruit orchards and the blossom are starting.’

Shuswap history in pictures: The lady on the house

Photograph raises several questions for Salmon Arm Museum

Okanagan drive-in movie theatre plans to open amid COVID-19

Enderby theatre making a number of operational changes to further enable social distancing

Letter: Community newspapers help keep readers connected

Writer grateful for Observer at time when residents are sheltering in place

Column: Making the most of this new normal

Opening our eyes by Nan Dickie

B.C. artist erects 15-foot statue and names it COVID

Decades of collecting spare parts culminated in folk art towering over a country road

Most Read