My younger brother, Hugh, joined the army earlier this year. I think it’s safe to say that we had never really seen eye-to-eye growing up together.
Hugh and I were always very different people, and his passion for his future military career baffled me in some ways. While I might not have always completely understood Hugh’s passion for the armed forces, I do now completely support it, so when the time came to celebrate my brother’s achievements with his passing out parade, I confirmed my attendance in writing (as per the strict military instructions) immediately.
The passing out parade itself was a rather surreal experience. The soldiers all looked so similar from so far away, and as a result, everyone spent most of the parade trying to decide which soldier we should be watching.
Luckily my dad did manage to snap some pictures of Hugh with his DSLR.
To add to this, the temperature seemed to have dropped about 10 °C for the occasion, so it possibly wasn’t the most comfortable experience I’ve ever had. If I’m being completely honest I did momentarily question my decision to attend as I sat in below freezing temperatures and the harsh Northern wind blew rain at us from a 45-degree angle. However, the army band kept everyone’s spirits up by blasting out their best covers of Sam Smith and Avicii, and it was all worth it to see Hugh graduate from training in style.
After a buffet lunch, we found a green-ish spot for some photos.
And also got a chance to sneak a peek of Hugh’s home for the last seven months.
We spent the evening feasting in the Dean Court Hotel in York, which had a beautiful view of York Minster and a mouth-watering menu.
It was clear throughout the day that Hugh could not have been happier with his decision to pursue this career. I absolutely believe that there is nothing more important than pursuing what you love so it was great to see Hugh so happy. I felt extremely proud watching him in his uniform, in his element, marching with his fellow soldiers out on the parade ground.
Congratulations Hugh. Go kick some ass.