Mr. John Clarke joined The Cape Breton Highlanders in 1960 at the age of 22, rising through the Non-Commissioned Officer (NCO) ranks to become the Regimental Sergeant Major of the Battalion from 1987 to 1994. As the highest-ranking NCO, Mr. Clarke provided sound and sage advice to the Commanding Officer of the unit, as well as providing guidance and mentorship to all members of The Cape Breton Highlanders. After retiring from active service, he continued to remain an important fixture of both the Cape Breton Highlanders and The Cape Breton Highlanders Association.
One of Mr. Clarke’s greatest accomplishments, which can be recognized and appreciated by all, is the Cape Breton Highlanders Museum located in Victoria Park. After his retirement in 1994, he turned his full attention to the many artifacts and historical objects of the Regiment. John took it upon himself to preserve the history and development the museum. He was responsible for the establishment of the museum and is the prevailing authority on the history of the Cape Breton Highlanders. A priceless resource for the Regiment and our local community, he is routinely engaged in request from researchers and those looking for lost loved ones.
John believes it is important to preserve the military history of Cape Breton. He has been quoted saying, “Everyone in Cape Breton has a military connection.”
John has been awarded the Canadian Forces Decoration 2nd Clasp, Queen’s Jubilee, Canadian Centennial Medal and Canada 125th Anniversary Medal. Mr. Clarke lives in Coxheath with his wife, Fiona, and is the father of three and grandfather of six.