56th Field Artillery honors Norfolk County soldier

Capt. Peter Davis has been posthumously honored for his 44 years of service to Canada and his community.

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“He was a natural artillery officer in that he was of good nature, technically proficient and always thought of the welfare of his soldiers first,” Lt. Col. Patrick Pitt, of the 56th Field Artillery Regiment, said. “He was an excellent leader who was invested in training from the most junior members to senior leaders.”

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Capt. Davis died Aug. 31, 2023. He was 62.

A plaque naming a lecture hall in honor of Davis was unveiled at the regiment’s 69th Battery in Simcoe following Exercise Gravenstaffel Gunner in Simcoe in March. Members of the Field Battery, regimental associations and family members including Davis’s wife Janis, his son Ryan and his brother Chris were on hand.

A veteran of Afghanistan, Davis served with the United Nations in the former Yugoslavia and with the regular force as well as with the 56th Field Artillery, 69 Battery (reserves) in Simcoe.

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“His contributions to individual training as an instructor and course officer to the unit cannot be understated,” Pitt said.

Davis helped train hundreds of soldiers through his contributions to the regiment and through training gunners at 4th Canadian Division Training Center in Meaford, Pitt said.

Locally, Davis was dedicated to his Norfolk County home.

“As the leader of 69 Battery he could be counted on to lead community outreach initiatives such as planning for the Warrior’s Day Parade and recruiting efforts at the Norfolk County Fair, Remembrance Day at local schools and at Remembrance Day ceremonies.”

Davis was a member of 69 Battery Association and after he retired from the unit continued to volunteer as a cadet officer for the cadet corp garrisoned in Simcoe, Pitt said.

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Sgt. Scott Hoo, of the 56th Field Regiment, said Davis was well-liked and respected whose knowledge and leadership skills were hard to surpass.

“When he came back to the 69th Battery from the regular force, he provided leadership and guidance to those below and above him in the change of command,” Hoo said. “He was a course officer, served as the unit’s operations officer and as battery commander for regimental summer training.

“He helped institute a training program that enabled more candidates and instructors to participate in summer courses.”

Davis also coordinated the use of local training areas in Simcoe and obtained the appropriate approvals to complete senior level courses in Norfolk.

“His mentorship has provided untold numbers of soldiers and leaders guidance through their respective careers and was often sought by all levels of soldiers due to his many years of experience,” Hoo said. “He always looked for way to connect with the community and his work, through the cadet program has helped boost its numbers significantly following the COVID-19 pandemic.”

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