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Watford youngster's family watch ceremonial
12:30pm Tuesday 30th October 2012 in News
A Junior Soldier was among more than 600 youngsters who celebrated the first milestone in their Army training by taking part in a Passing-In parade.
Callum Fletcher, from Watford, marked his first six weeks in the Army by marching on to the parade square at Uniacke Barracks at the Army Foundation College in Harrogate, North Yorkshire, watched by his proud parents and aunt.
The Junior Soldiers, who are aged between 16 and 17, are destined for careers in the Royal Armoured Corps, Royal Artillery and the Infantry.
It was the first opportunity Callum’s family has had to see him since he started training at the college.
The 17-year-old, who attended Hemel Hempstead Secondary School, said: "I’ve really enjoyed the whole thing - especially the field exercises.
"It’s at times like this that it hits you that you’re going to be a soldier. I have done a lot of stuff at the college in a very short period of time.
"I’m a bit of an adrenaline junkie and I like to be kept busy - and they certainly do that here.
"Going home will be great as it will not be so hectic. I’ll be able to take time over my meals and not rush.
"I’m also looking forward to having a bath. We only have showers here. I do miss family and friends and I’m looking forward to seeing them."
Callum added: "I can see this parade as being one of the proudest days of my life. It gives you a great sense of achievement."
Lieutenant Colonel Khashi Sharifi, the college’s commanding officer, was the Inspecting Officer for both the Cambrai and Peninsular company parades.
He told the assembled ranks: "You have all come through the first six weeks of your training and you should be proud. You have learned not just drill, but how to look after yourself - both in camp and in the field.
"The weather for the two field exercises has given you a taste of what a Yorkshire winter can offer. But you have come through it and bonded as a team."
The Junior Soldiers will return in November ready to start the next part of their training at the Army Foundation College.