Episode 048 – CWO Bill Darling Part 1

William Darling joined the Canadian Armed Forces in 1979 as a Gunner with 2 Field Royal Canadian Artillery, located in Montreal, Quebec. After completing Recruit and Basic training, he completed his TQ1 Artilleryman training at CFB Gagetown. He remained with 2 Field as a Gun Detachment member, being promoted to Bombardier in 1980. In 1982 he relocated to Toronto, Ontario, re-mustered Infantry and joined The 48th Highlanders of Canada, becoming the Regiment’s first 4th generation Highlander. The Darling family has served the Regiment continuously from 1896 to present day with his Great-Grandfather, Great-Great-Uncle, Grandfather, 3 Great-Uncles and his Uncle all serving as Officers. Bill’s 2 brothers also served in the Regiment.

Bill Darling served as a section commander in C Company in 1983 and 1984. In 1983 he was awarded the Regiment’s Eaton Trophy as the Top Jr. NCO. He completed his Jr. NCO course in 1984 and was appointed Master Corporal the same year. After a 2 year posting to the Militia Training Centre at CFB Borden he returned to service with the Regiment in 1987 having been promoted to Sergeant in 1986. Sgt Darling was awarded the Eaton Trophy for a second time in 1988 as the Regiment’s Top Sr. NCO, the first NCO in Regimental history to be awarded both the Top Jr. and Sr. NCO awards. He continued to serve the Regiment in a variety capacities including Platoon 2I/C, Company Transport Sergeant, Company Quarter Master Sergeant, Company Sergeant Major and Regimental Training NCO, earning promotions to Warrant Officer in 1990 and Master Warrant Officer in 1996. In 1992, WO Darling was awarded a Central Militia Area Commander’s Commendation for his dedication and professionalism during the Area’s annual Infantry Competition. In 1996 MWO Darling was again extra-Regimentally employed as a CSM with 32 Canadian Brigade Group’s Battle School instructing recruit and primary leadership courses.

In 1997, Bill Darling deployed as a Duty Officer with the 1st Battalion Royal Canadian Regiment, for the Red River flood relief operations in Manitoba as part of Operation Assistance.

When Bill returned to Regimental service, he was appointed the Regiment’s Drill Sergeant Major. He further had the honour and privilege of being promoted to the rank of CWO and appointed Regimental Sergeant Major of the 48th Highlanders of Canada in 1999. He had the privilege of representing the Regiment at various exercises and events around the country, most notably the Netherlands‘ Millennium Celebration of the Liberation of Holland in 2000.

When Chief Warrant Officer Darling relinquished the appointment of RSM in 2002, he was appointed the RSM of 32 CBG Battle School a position he held until 2005. In 2005, CWO Darling deployed on Op Boreas to Bosnia Herzegovina as the 2I/C of the European Union’s Multi National Task Force (North-West) Liaison and Observation Team Detachment in Sanski Most. Upon his return he was appointed the Brigade Sergeant Major of 32 CBG in 2006 a position he held until 2008. He was transferred to Land Force Central Area as the Reserve Sergeant Major at that time. CWO Darling was honoured to be appointed as a Member of the Order of Military Merit in 2010. CWO Darling was transferred to Canadian Army Doctrine and Training Centre in Kingston, Ontario as the Army Reserve Training Sergeant Major in 2011. Bill completed his appointment as the Army Reserve Training Sergeant Major in 2014, and he Commissioned from the Ranks, to the rank of Captain and he has been parading back “home” as the company second-in command of Administration Company, 48th Highlanders of Canada.

Captain Darling is a Construction Manager with CH2M Hill Canada Limited, a multi-national consulting engineering firm. He currently resides in Whitby, where he enjoys golf, playing and coaching hockey and the occasional quiet weekend at his cottage with his 3 children.

Portrait CWO WM Darling LFDTS HQ Reserve Sgt Major ©2012 DND-MDN Canada

Chief Warrant Officer WM Darling, MMM CD
CADTC HQ Reserve Sergeant-Major



CSM (MWO) Ron Alkema & CQMS (WO) Bill Darling, 1995


Regiment’s 100th Anniversary Parade, Monument sentries: WO Marty Dupuis (RCR), WO Bill Darling (Review Order), WO Bud Gillie (Modern Day), Sgt Peter Rosa (Boer War), Sgt Guy Bowie (WWI), Sgt John Van de Vegte (WWII); 1991


Commanding Officer, LCol George Turner, CD & RSM (CWO) Bill Darling, CD. Holland 2000


3 of 4 generations of 48th Highlanders. LCol W.W.G. Darling, DSO, ED (2nd generation, Commanding officer 1946-1949); a furture RSM now Capt W.M. Darling, MMM, CD at age 4, LCol C.W. Darling, VD (1st generation, Commanding Officer Home battalion 1915-1919, Commanding Officer 1919-1923), my brother Pte E.A. Darling (age 2 who served with the Regiment in 1983) and Bill’s father Lt (Ret’d) C.W.W. Darling (RMC 1953-1958). Missing are Bill’s Uncle LCol R.G. Darling, CD (3rd generation) and his baby brother Pte W.C. Darling (served in 1985) because he wasn’t born yet!

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