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Mathieu LeClair, R.I.P.: Body Identified as missing RMC Cadet


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Body identified as that of missing cadet
By Staff
Updated 11 minutes ago

Elliot Ferguson

The Whig-Standard

Military investigators confirmed Wednesday that the body pulled out of Navy Bay Tuesday was that of a missing Royal Military College cadet.

Mathieu LeClair, a second-year student from St. John, N.B., had been missing since early Monday.

Capt. Karina Holder of the Canadian Forces Provost Marshal in Ottawa said foul play is not suspected in LeClair’s death, though the investigation is continuing.

No details about the cause of death were released.

In a statement Wednesday afternoon, RMC commandant Brig.-Gen. Eric Tremblay said news of LeClair's death was met with sadness by all at the college.

"Our thoughts and prayers are with his family and friends. As a small, close unit, this affects all of us here at RMC,” Tremblay stated.

A search for LeClair began Tuesday. An OPP dive team and a search-and-rescue helicopter crew from CFB Trenton were called in to help.

The Forces’ National Investigation Service investigates serious or sensitive service or criminal offences against defence department property and personnel. The organization has jurisdiction over military personnel on Canadian Forces' properties and on exercises and missions abroad.

“If something is suspected to have happened on DND property, it's ours,” Holder said.

OPP Sgt. Kristine Rae said because the investigation originated at RMC, the military retains the lead role in the case, Rae said.

RIP Mathieu.
N.B. student's body pulled from Lake Ontario

By By Jennifer Pritchett, New Brunswick Telegraph-Journal February 29, 2012 7:03 PM

The body of a 20-year-old Saint John, N.B., man who was studying at Royal Military College has been pulled out of the waters near the Canadian Forces university in Kingston, Ont.

Mathieu LeClair had been discovered missing by RMC officials on Monday afternoon and reported to military police. Ontario Provincial Police divers pulled his body out of the waters of Lake Ontario near the expansive campus on Tuesday afternoon.

"Although foul play is not suspected, the investigation remains ongoing, and no details as to the cause of death may be released at this time," said Capt. Karina Holder, spokeswoman for the National Investigation Service, the major crimes division of the Canadian Forces.

LeClair was in his third year at the college and was studying engineering. He was a member of the school's basketball team.

Military officials informed the family of his death on Tuesday afternoon and four RMC staff travelled to Saint John on Tuesday evening to support those closest to LeClair and to help with the funeral arrangements.

His mother, Mireille Basque, described him as a "driven" and hard-working young man who wanted to join the Air Force since he was a young child.

"I never had to worry about homework or his uniform being ready for Cadets. There was never an issue," she said. "He was very young when he said he was going to Royal Military College to be in the Air Force."

LeClair joined the Air Cadets in Saint John when he was 12 years old and continued until age 18.

"He was involved in everything," Basque said. "He was always in a good mood and he wanted people to be happy."

She said her son was disciplined, ambitious and organized from a young age. She remembers when he was about six years old, he came home from school and told his parents he wanted to go to summer camp.

"He had everything written down — everything he needed and what it was about," she said.

The RMC men's varsity basketball team website describes LeClair as being six foot one and 190 pounds.

College officials released a statement on Wednesday about his death.

"It is with tremendous sadness that we here at the Royal Military College of Canada learned of the death of Officer Cadet LeClair," said Brig.-Gen. Eric Tremblay, commandant of RMC.

"Our thoughts and prayers are with his family and friends. As a small, close unit, this affects all of us here at (RMC)."

Funeral details aren't yet confirmed.

LeClair's death is an eerie reminder of the 2003 disappearance of RMC cadet Joe Grozelle. The 21-year-old's body was found on the shore of the Cataraqui River not far from the college three weeks after he went missing. The investigation of his death went on for years and resulted in a 2008 coroner's inquest, which failed to determined how and when he died.

© Copyright (c) New Brunswick Telegraph Journal

Condolences to family, colleagues and friends....
fraserdw said:
Didn't this happen to another B Ball player at RMC?

OCdt Joe Grozelle a few years back. Not sure if he was a B-Ball player, but was a student at RMC who disappeared literally mid-sentence in writing an essay.
Just BING it and he was a B Ball player too and third year as well!
RIP OCdt LeClair.
Condolences to his family and friends.

It's kind of funny describing RMC as a "small unit" when there are well over 1200 people roaming the peninsula, but that's what it certainly feels like. Everyone knows everyone, especially in the Sqns (even us cranky old guys).

Sad story, the circumstances of the case may never be known at the request of his family...RIP, video at link


Hundreds attend funeral for RMC cadet
Mathieu LeClair was found in a lake near the Royal Military College in Kingston, Ont.
CBC News Posted: Mar 6, 2012 6:55 AM AT Last Updated: Mar 6, 2012 8:04 AM AT

Hundreds of mourners attended the funeral of Mathieu LeClair on Monday in Saint John, remembering the 20-year-old as a caring young man with a tremendous future in the military.

LeClair was reported missing from the Royal Military College in Kingston, Ont., on Feb. 27. The Ontario Provincial Police pulled LeClair’s body from the waters of Lake Ontario near the campus the next day.

The Canadian Forces National Investigation Service says foul play is not suspected, however they have not released the young man's cause of death.

The military says it may never confirm what happened at the request of LeClair's family.

On Monday, mourners were focused on remembering the young man.

Capt. Peter Smith met LeClair when he joined the air cadets at the age of 12.

Capt. Peter Smith described Matheiu LeClair as a caring young man with a tremendous future. (CBC)
“The boy had tremendous potential. He was really an exceptional young man,” he said.

Smith said LeClair was smart, driven, disciplined but also kind and nurturing and excited to be in the military.

“He was so young and such a bright future. Such a good person, such a good caring kid who had such great leadership, it was a shock,” he said.

LeClair’s casket was carried into the church on Monday by his own classmates. They arrived by the busload from Kingston.

LeClair's family asked all media to keep a respectful distance from the funeral services.

This is the second high-profile death of an RMC cadet in the last decade.

In 2003, the search for 21-year-old Joe Grozelle ended when his body was recovered from a river near the military college’s campus.

Two autopsies never determined the cause of death.
My condolences to the family, friends, and fellow classmates of Ocdt.Leclair. Rest in Peace. :cdn: :yellow:
Godspeed young man!

If memory serves, didn't two OCDT die doing Farnham training as well, I believe from heat exhaustion or heat stroke?