Episode 047 – BGen Garry Thomson

Brigadier-General Garry S. Thomson, CD was born in Dundee, Scotland, attended High School in Thunder Bay and Kincardine, and university at Waterloo College, and holds a B.Sc. in Business from Pacific Western University, Los Angeles.

From a police and military family, (his father was a wartime officer in the British Army, captured at Anzio Beachhead as a Platoon Commander, 6th Gordons, 1st British Infantry Division) he was an Army Cadet, then began his own military career as ROTP (Infantry) in 1958, and was commissioned in The Royal Regiment of Canada in 1963. He commanded his Regiment from 1976 to 1979. He is currently Immediate Past Chair of The Royal Regiment Foundation and Chair of the G & SF Foundation. Brigadier-General Thomson commanded Toronto Militia District (now 32 Brigade Group) from October 1986 to October 1988 and served subsequently on the staff of Central Militia Area, and later Land Force Central Area as Deputy Chief of Staff, Administration. He was promoted on March 1, 1992 to Brigadier-General, and was appointed Deputy Commander Land Force Central Area on March 8, 1992. He was Acting Commander, Land Forces Central Area (LFCA) from February to May 1995 and completed his term as Deputy Commander in April 1996. While at LFCA, he spent time with the UN forces in Croatia and Bosnia, and was in Rwanda a few short months after the massacre in 1994. Brigadier-General Thomson was appointed in December, 2011 as Honorary Lieutenant-Colonel of The Grey and Simcoe Foresters Regiment, and looks forward to contributing to their long and distinguished service to Canada, and the chapters yet to be written.

In civilian life, Brigadier-General Thomson had many years’ experience in the insurance industry, including Vice-President, Group Operations and Vice-President, Association Business with Constellation Assurance Co., then as Assistant Vice-President, Association with Sun Life of Canada. He moved to the Workplace Safety & Insurance Board of Ontario as General Manager in Operations from 1997 to 2005. After a brief retirement he returned to business for a year as President of ATF Canada Corporation. He recently completed 28 years as a Governor of the Canadian Corps of Commissionaires, Great Lakes Division, is a member of the Probus Club of Mississauga South, a Chevalier of the Military and Hospitaller Order of St. Lazarus of Jerusalem, a member and past First Vice-President of The Royal Canadian Military Institute and a Past President of Fort York Branch, Royal Canadian Legion. He was for 7 years, ending 2012, the voluntary Producer of the RCMI’s Annual Massed Band Concert held every October at Roy Thomson Hall, Toronto.

A new activity he has taken on is taking select groups on battlefield tours in Europe, tracing Canadian and allied armies through WW1 and WW2, introducing Canadians to their military history. He has been passionate about flying as an aircraft owner and instrument pilot for 40 years, although he has now hung up his headset. He is an avid average golfer. Brigadier-General Thomson and his wife Sandra live in Mississauga, Ontario, and have their vacation home in Kincardine, Ontario.

 

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Brigadier-General Garry Thomson, CD – The Honorary Lieutenant-Colonel of The Grey & Simcoe Foresters.

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Major Thomson escorts the Lieutenant-Governor of Ontario, Pauline McGibbon, during an inspection of The Royal Regiment of Canada at the Royal Winter Fair.  The mascot on parade is Sgt Royal!

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Lieutenant-Colonel Garry Thomson, CD in his role as the Commanding Officer of The Royal Regiment of Canada

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Brigadier-General Garry Thomson, CD.  Deputy Commander of Land Force Central Area.

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In his role as the Deputy Commander of Land Force Central Area (now the 4th Canadian Division), Brigadier-General Thomson visits the troop overseas on a UN Tour.

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Brigadier-General Thomson poses with the Junior Ranks of The Royal Regiment of Canada during a visit by His Royal Highness, Charles the Prince of Wales.

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