Sailor 3rd Class Kilian Soch: A different life

Navy News / November 6, 2020

Sailor 3rd Class (S3) Kilian Soch is a Boatswain in Her Majesty’s Canadian Ship (HMCS) Winnipeg, which is currently deployed on Operation PROJECTION Asia-Pacific.

“I joined the Royal Canadian Navy (RCN) because I’ve always wanted to be a part of something greater than myself, to serve Canada and protect my friends and family,” said S3 Soch.

“For duty, honour and brotherhood. To be an uncommon man.”

S3 Soch was inspired to join the RCN as a Boatswain because of a friend, who was a sailor in the same trade, had helped him overcome a period in which he was feeling defeated in the face of adversity.

“I took my time choosing my occupation in the RCN, and I couldn’t think of a more perfect fit,” said S3 Soch.

“My job is important to me because it allowed me to look toward future opportunities and to work hard and carry on for my friends and family.”

S3 Soch found out he was going to be deployed on HMCS Winnipeg back in October of 2019 and was overcome with excitement.

“I literally shouted in the classroom when we got our postings, I couldn’t wait to deploy. This was going to be my first big sail,” recalled S3 Soch.

However the Sailor 3rd Class could not have anticipated the impact that COVID-19 would have had on his first sail.

“The biggest challenge was dealing with all the preparations to deploy like the Immediate Multi-Ship Readiness Training in the COVID-19 environment, this was on top of adjusting to life on a ship such as living with your colleagues in a smaller environment,” said S3 Soch.

“But despite that, deploying with HMCS Winnipeg has been a huge highlight of my career. We’re striving in spite of the challenges we face with COVID-19 and we’re really coming together as a team.”

As Remembrance Day nears, we asked S3 Soch what he would like people to think about on this day of reflection.

“I think every day should be Remembrance Day; it doesn’t just stop for family members and friends of those who have made the ultimate sacrifice. Those lost were a father, a brother, a son, a mother, a sister, a daughter,” explained S3 Soch.

“Death teaches you how fleeting life truly is, and how little time we really have to tell somebody that we love them. I think Remembrance Day should be a reminder for everyone. A reminder to tell a supportive mother, father, sibling, or partner that you love them, and to reach out to family or friends who no longer have that chance. Remember the people who made the ultimate sacrifice, they will not be forgotten.”