Tuskegee Airmen Observe 75th anniversary of Historic Squadron
Friday, August 11, 2017

By Maj. Christina English, CAP, Commander, Central Florida Composite Squadron

Orlando, Fla. -

Members of Civil Air Patrol Florida Wing joined the Tuskegee Airmen Institute in observing the organization’s anniversary at the Hyatt Regency Convention Center August 3-5, 2017. Fourteen CAP members attended the historical celebration of our country’s heroes for their bravery and service.

The event featured a number of activities to bring greater awareness about the history of the Tuskegee Airmen and their contributions to the nation. Civil Air Patrol continued its long-standing support of the current day Tuskegee Airmen’s mission. CAP members provided a color guard at the youth luncheon for the Tuskegee members, worked with the Tuskegee Youth sponsored project, manned a CAP information booth and spoke with many Tuskegee heroes throughout the event.

The Tuskegee Airmen, Inc. (TAI) was founded in Detroit, Michigan in 1972, ending nearly 30 years of anonymity for the brave men and women who were part of the “Tuskegee Experience” during World War II. TAI is a non-military, non-profit entity that exists primarily to motivate and inspire young Americans to become engaged in our nation’s society and democratic process. Their legacy inspires many to continue to overcome challenges that still affect our nation today.

TAI sponsors scholarships and organizes youth training events in order to strengthen their cause for educating young minds and encouraging young people to reach for their goals. A partnership with TAI and Civil Air Patrol provided STEM kits (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics) containing hydraulic engineering models for the participants to build. Students attending the event were graduates of the Orange County Public Schools Calculus Project from surrounding Orlando middle schools.

The building activity was led by CAP Senior Member Eric Yuhauz, PhD STEM. The students utilized mechanical concepts to construct four types of wooden hydraulic machines using a small number of syringes (pistons), wooden frames, surgical tubing and liquid. The four machines are a cherry picker, an excavator, a scissor lift and a platform lifter. Yuhauz was the Martin H. Harris – Central Florida Air Force Association Teacher of the Year. He explained the kits are designed to introduce students to levers, linkages and hydraulic fluid power and were created to inspire learners to design machines of their own.

The CAP Color guard had the honor at this year’s TAI Anniversary to present the colors with the Tuskegee Airmen Institute flag to honor those still living and promote pride in the generations of their family members and patrons upholding their history, educational endeavors and TAI mission.

The cadet and adult CAP members spoke with the Tuskegee airmen and their families about CAP service with hopes to promote interest about squadrons near their homes and enhance the love of flying for the youth already connected to their local TA chapters.

The weekend ended with a compliment from Gen. Leon Johnson, TAI – President and Board of Governors, CAP member. “Together our efforts can continue to promote aviation education and inspire the youth of tomorrow.”

Photos provided by Maj. Christina English

Central Florida Composite Squadron members joined in the STEM activity scheduled during the Tuskegee anniversary celebration. (photo by Maj. Christina English)
Photo Caption:  Central Florida Composite Squadron members joined in the STEM activity scheduled during the Tuskegee anniversary celebration. (photo by Maj. Christina English)
Article Information
Reviewed by: Maj. Dennis Maloney
Syndicated to: Region Hq, Florida Wing, Group 3
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Civil Air Patrol, the longtime all-volunteer U.S. Air Force auxiliary, is the newest member of the Air Force’s Total Force. In this role, CAP operates a fleet of 560 aircraft, performs about 90 percent of continental U.S. inland search and rescue missions as tasked by the Air Force Rescue Coordination Center and is credited by the AFRCC with saving an average of 80 lives annually. CAP’s 57,000 members also perform homeland security, disaster relief and drug interdiction missions at the request of federal, state and local agencies. CAP also plays a leading role in aerospace/STEM education, and its members serve as mentors to 24,000 young people participating in CAP’s Cadet Programs. Visit www.GoCivilAirPatrol.com for more information.
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