Charlotte County CAP Members continue Tradition of Distinction
Wednesday, March 14, 2018
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Photo Caption:
FL051 members man the CAP information display at the 2018 Englewood Fly-In held at Buchan Field. Pictured L to R: 2nd Lt Albert Losacano, Cadet Senior Airman Jamie Macleod and Major Earle Bretz. (Photo credit: FL051)

By Maj. Earle Bretz & 2nd Lt Donna Jablonski, Public Affairs Officer, Charlotte County Composite Sqn

Members from the Charlotte County Composite Squadron participant at the annual Englewood Fly-In held at Buchan Field. The squadron has supported the local high school aviation program for the past 12 events.

“This was the best attended,” said Maj. Earle Bretz, FL051 public affairs officer. “There were more varied planes, more attendees and more planes flying up and down the runways to entertain the folks.”

Bretz said the hours spent telling the CAP story of success in performing missions for America will reap future benefits. Several potential members stopped by the CAP display for information.

The Charlotte County Composite Squadron honor guard presented the colors flags at the 12th Biennial Gathering of Quilts sponsored by the Disconnected Piecers Quilt Guild. Three veterans were recognized for their service and presented with a gift from the Quilt of Valor Foundation. Over 200 works of quilt-art were on colorful display throughout the Charlotte Harbor Event and Conference Center.

The members of the color guard, pictured below left to right: C/A1C Jonathan Hemingway; C/CMSgt Justin McDonald; C/TSgt Autumn Rhodes; and C/A1C Justin Hemingway. (photo credit; FL051)

Cadets of the Charlotte County Composite Squadron were recognized in March for achievements in cadet program. Pictured below L to R with their new rank are: C/2nd Lt Justin McDonald; C/Staff Sgt. Elizabeth Gregory; C/Master Sgt. Autumn Rhodes; C/Airman 1st Class Alexandrea Mulvaney; C/Senior Airman Jonathan Hemingway; C/Senior Airman Justin Hemingway.

C/2nd Lt. Justin McDonald earned the Billy Mitchell award which is earned by Civil Air Patrol cadets who have successfully completed the second phase of the cadet program. It marks the end of the enlisted phase of the cadet program; cadets are promoted to Cadet Second Lieutenants upon receipt and, by extension, Cadet Officers. The award is given in honor of Maj Gen William "Billy" Mitchell, former Deputy Chief of the Army Air Service and military aviation visionary.

C/Staff Sgt. Elizabeth Gregory earned the Wright Brothers award for successfully completing the Phase I of the Civil Air Patrol cadet program. It marks the transition of a cadet to the non-commissioned officer status in the Civil Air Patrol cadet program and accompanies promotion to the grade of Cadet Staff Sergeant.

While there are many youth-oriented programs in America today, CAP's cadet program is unique in that it uses aviation as a cornerstone. All cadets participate in a variety of activities, gain rank and increased recognition through the program. They are challenged in ways they may not have otherwise had the opportunity. Cadets may complete skill training that makes them eligible to participate in Air Force assigned missions, enjoy orientation flights and attend encampments, all designed to develop leadership qualities in our youth with an inspiring vision of the future.

Article Information
Reviewed by: Lt. Col. Jeff P. Carlson
Syndicated to: Region Hq, Florida Wing, Cadet Programs, Group 5
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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 for more information.
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