Canadian NORAD Region (CANR) – A US Air Force member's perspective

News Article / December 29, 2014

By Technical Sergeant Benjamin R. Sambolanay

My name is Technical Sergeant Benjamin R. Sambolanay and I am a Cyber Systems Operator Technician by trade. I joined the United States Air Force in 2003. My previous stations include Turkey, Okinawa, and Los Angeles, California, where I served as a US Air Force recruiter. I returned to my original trade as a Cyber Systems specialist here in Winnipeg, Manitoba. I am married to a wonderful and loving wife, Pebbles, and together we have two beautiful boys, Nikkolas, 6, and Finnix, 2.

My family and I arrived in Winnipeg in August 2012, marking a new chapter and a new beginning in our military family adventure. Two months after our arrival, we were blessed by the birth of our youngest son – our very own Canuck!  We are truly blessed to have such a great assignment, both befitting my professional military growth and a perfect place to raise a growing family. The people of our host nation, including the military and civilian personnel working at 17 Wing, 1 Canadian Air Division, and the Canadian NORAD Region, have been great to us.

Working side by side with the Canadian military and civilian IT professionals makes this assignment a rewarding one. Not only do I enjoy working with our closest Allied partner, but it is a continuous learning experience; learning a new culture and living in it, and constantly facing new challenges, all while having the privilege of working with people of the same ideology and responsibility – to keep our countries and families safe from any threats.

Great attitudes and very professional work ethics are only two of the many attributes that describe our Canadian partners. They are always ready and willing to help tackle the mission. Being around such dedication and professionalism inspires me to continuously improve myself. There is a sense of pride in belonging to a great team that provides the best aerospace surveillance, identification, control, and defense warning, and ensures that when it comes to defending our air, space and cyber space sovereignty, we here at CANR are second to none!

To sum up, I love my job, I love being stationed here with my family, I love the people here, both military and civilian, and – believe it or not (you may think I’m crazy, especially coming from all tropical, warm places!) – I love the SNOW!

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