Episode 032 – CWO Emmett Kelly

CWO Kelly was born in MontréalQuébec in 1965 and was raised and educated in the Montreal area. In 1982, after five years as an Army Cadet with the 3 Field Engineers and The Black Watch (Royal Highland Regiment) of Canada, he joined the Black Watch as a private soldier in B Company.

CWO Kelly was with the Black Watch from December of 1982 until transferring to The Calgary Highlanders in August of 1995. During his tenure with the Black Watch, CWO Kelly qualified as an Infantry Communicator and Basic Machine Gunner. In 1985 CWO Kelly attended the Ecole de Combat with the Royal 22nd Regiment in Valcartier and successfully completed the Regular Force Infantry Section Commanders Course. This was followed with the completion of the Basic Parachutist Course at CFB Edmonton in December of that same year. While employed with the Black Watch, CWO Kelly was employed as a Section Commander and eventually as a Platoon WO in A Company. He was also employed as the Platoon WO with the Reconnaissance Platoon with 3rd Battalion of the Royal 22nd Regiment within the 10/90 establishment. CWO Kelly was attached to 2eme Regiment Artillerie Leger de Campagne during Operation Salon (Oka Crisis) in 1990 as a platoon WO.

In 1995 CWO Kelly transferred to the Calgary Highlanders where he filled all available positions for a Senior NCO within A Company. From 1999-2002 CWO Kelly was employed as the HQ Company Sergeant Major at the Western Area Training Centre in Wainwright, Alberta. CWO Kelly was appointed as Regimental Sergeant Major of the Calgary Highlanders in 2008, eventually handing over the position in January 2012.

CWO Kelly deployed to Sierra Leone on Operation Sculpture Roto 21 as the Staff College Sergeant Major within the International Military Advisory Training Team (IMATT). While there in 2011 he instructed on a Sergeant Major Course and on a Machine Gun Instructor course for the Republic of Sierra Leone Armed Forces (RSLAF.) CWO Kelly returned to Sierra Leone in 2012 using his civilian skills to oversee construction of a FOB and FIBUA Training Site sponsored by IMATT in support of RSLAF pre-deployment training. Upon return to Canada CWO Kelly was appointed as the Brigade Sergeant Major for 41 Canadian Brigade Group.

CWO Kelly attended Dawson College in Montreal studying Languages and Literature. CWO Kelly has worked in the construction industry in Calgary as a project manager and operations manager for various developers and construction firms.

CWO Kelly is married to Ottilie Kelly (nee Ermel) of Wainwright, Alberta and they have a daughter in the Calgary area. CWO Kelly also has a daughter who resides in the Montreal area. His hobbies include golf and when possible, more golf.

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CWO Emmett Kelly, CD – Brigade Sergeant-Major of 41 Canadian Brigade Group.


CWO Emmett Kelly – Regimental Sergeant-Major of the Calgary Highlanders 2008-2011


CWO Mike Lacroix, CWO Derek Munroe and CWO Emmett Kelly, three Canadian Chief Warrant Officers on the same tour in Sierra Leone boosting morale in the Mess!


I have to admit that Emmett was a Passenger when this happened!


LCol Mike Vernon, CWO Derek Munroe and CWO Emmett Kelly present the Sierra Leone Minister of National Defence, the Chief of Defence Staff and the command staff of the Republic of Sierra Leone Armed Forces with genuine Calgary Stampede Smithbilt Hats.


CWO Kelly’s assigned IMATT Land Rover – Note the distinctive sticker!


LCol Mike Vernon and CWO Kelly pose with former British Prime Minister Tony Blair.


Emmett uses his contacts in Calgary to get a legendary BBQ shipped to the task force in Freetown.

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