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Major Sam Meckbach (repeated from commando.org)


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Sam Meckbach, the former DCO of 2 Cdo passed away on the 1st of Feb after a final battle with cancer.

Sam began his military career in 1956 in a High School Cadet Corps #109 in Ingersoll Ontario. He attended cadet leadership and communication courses in London, Ipperwash and Blackdown and took the Banff National Cadet Camp in 1960.

He joined 3 RCR (The London and Oxford Fusiliers) in 1959 and then attended Officer Training in Borden in 1962. Sam served with 2nd and 1st Bns of The Canadian Guards and on their reduction in 1969 he was transferred to 2 PPCLI in NW Europe.

Sam was posted to the Combat Training Centre in Gagetown, 2 Commando in Edmonton, and then 3PPCLI in Victoria. Subsequent postings with the RSS Pacific in 1979 at Bay Street Armouries and 1982 in Vancouver linked Sam to the Militia units in BC and the cadet participation in many BC unit activities.

In 1985 Sam left the Regular Forces and joined 11 Svc Bn as DCO and later his civilian job took him to Vancouver where he served with Militia Area HQ at Jericho.

In 1996 Sam was asked by RCSU Pacific to address some cadet issues and as a result he volunteered to serve as C Coy Commander in Vernon CSTC and later as the DCO. This led to his appointment as CO of 3005 RCAC (11 Svc Bn) in Saanich. In 2000, Sam went to Connaught CSTC and was privileged in 2001 to take the National Rifle Team to Bisley UK.

After five summers in Connaught Sam was again given one of those once in a lifetime opportunities to command Whitehorse CSTC, in 2005 and 2006. In the past, Sam has managed a convenience store in Victoria for ten years and for four years was the Director of the Provincial Emergency Program Academy at the Justice Institute in Vancouver.

Recently he has delivered the Harassment Advisor and Harassment Investigator courses for the Admiral and conducts Administrative Investigations into Human Rights violations for the Base Commander Esquimalt.

Sam is a graduate of many courses including Staff Colleges at Kingston, ON and Quetta, Pakistan. In addition, he has completed the US Ranger course, the Australian Jungle Warfare course and the Royal Marines UK High Angle training. Sam served with the UN in Cyprus in 1964 and 1974 (as DCO of 2 CDO during the Turkish invasion). He retired in 2007 after 48 years of Regular and Reserve Force service.

Sam was currently serving as the Executive Director of the Army Cadet League of Canada – BC Branch and he was a past president of the Vancouver Island Branch of the RCR Association. Sam Meckbach was married to Marjorie (nee Purkiss) and they have two children and six grandchildren, all residing in BC.
Sam was a true officer and gentlemen. I worked with him at Pacific Region Cadets and for a time my wife and I were neighbours of Sam and Marj in Esquimalt. Throughout he was a good friend, mentor and confidante. I will miss him. :salute:
I met him in Victoria doing research for a paper in 4th year - 1978. Great great guy! So long Sam!  :salute: