Retiree receives degree

Comox resident Ervin Cross was presented with his Bachelor of Science from the Royal Military College of Canada. 

Ervin Cross (left)

Ervin Cross (left)

Comox resident Ervin Cross was presented with his Bachelor of Science degree from the Royal Military College of Canada (RMCC) in a ceremony in Courtenay on Feb. 24.

He graduated from RMCC in 1957 in chemical engineering, two years before the college was empowered to grant degrees.

In recognition of the full university program he completed, he was granted a degree retroactively at the RMCC convocation in November 2013, but was unable to attend the ceremony in Kingston, Ont.

As a representative of the Senate of RMCC, Dr. Joseph Buckley, dean of graduate studies and vice-principal, research, came to Comox for the presentation.

He brought words of congratulation from Brig.-Gen. Al Meinzinger, commandant of RMCC, and Dr. Harry Kowal, principal of RMCC, then gave Cross his degree and gifts from the commandant and principal.

“Mr. Cross is actually a member of the RMC class of 1957. He did not receive a degree back then, because it was only in 1959 that RMC was empowered by the Ontario legislature to confer degrees in arts, science and engineering,” Kowal noted in a statement.

Local members of the “Old Brigade” — RMCC alumni from classes at least 50 years ago — were also in attendance to celebrate the event.

Following the presentations, Cross addressed the audience of family and friends with words of reminiscence and thanks.

Cross was a pilot in the RCAF and flew the F86, Buffalo, Twin Otter and Harvard during his career. He retired from the Canadian Armed Forces in 1987.

Throughout the 1990s, RMCC began tracking down past students to present them degrees they had earned, but who had never received a degree certificate.

For more information on the Royal Military College of Canada, visit

— 19 Wing Comox