29 June 2009

CTWG: CT Squadron stops at nothing to silence EPIRB

6 June 2009

Overcoming challenging conditions, Danbury Connecticut’s 399th Composite Squadron’s officers and cadets combined their aerial and ground missions to locate and silence an apparent Emergency Position Indicating Radio Beacon (EPIRB) transmission.

Senior member, Lt Col ”Sandy” Sanderson’s aircraft, with Maj Michael Heath and 2nd LT James Gavin aboard were conducting an evening Long Island Sound Patrol in coordination with the US Coast Guard. During the patrol, they picked up an apparent EPIRB signal emanating from the Connecticut shoreline.

After receiving approval, the 399th’s ground team led by Capt Ken Chapman and consisting of Cadet /Captain Ryan Chapman and Captain John Freeman set out at 2330 to a marina indicated by the aircraft’s positioning data. Determined to locate the signal, the ground team applied advanced problem solving skills to influence the local air traffic control team to assist as well as an airport maintenance team that required the additional encouragement of six city police cars and a canine patrol dog. After finding a way to unlock a secured fence at the marina the signal was located in a fishing vessel, determined to be a false alarm and silenced.

The information for this post was supplied by Capt Ken Chapman and Capt John Freeman of the 399th Composite Squadron.

28 June 2009

CAP: CAP-USAF realignment benefits America’s youth

June 22, 2009
NATIONAL HEADQUARTERS


Big dividends for Civil Air Patrol cadet programs are expected out of an administrative shift by the U.S. Air Force’s Air University. Effective June 11, 2009, both CAP and CAP-USAF, the liaison between CAP and the Air Force, were realigned under the Jeanne M. Holm Center for Officer Accessions and Citizenship Development. All entities are housed at Maxwell Air Force Base, Ala.

The realignment opens up lines of communication between the Air Force and CAP, its official civilian auxiliary, with a single Air Force point of contact for CAP’s citizenship and character development programs.

“We’re already seeing it,” said CAP Executive Director Don Rowland. “I believe there are a lot of positive things for us because of this.”

Under this new organizational chart, Air University remains the umbrella organization for the Holm Center, but CAP and CAP-USAF move from direct oversight by Air University to the Holm Center. CAP views this as a move to streamline Air Force and CAP youth programs.

The Holm Center, commanded by Brig. Gen. Teresa A.H. Djuric, already oversees the Air Force Reserve Office Training Corps, including Junior Air Force ROTC. Adding CAP will allow for better coordination and the opportunity to combine curricula for both cadet programs, plus a better structure for teaching teamwork, citizenship, discipline and fitness, as well as customs and courtesies. The supervisory realignment means cadets from either program will now be able to attend the same encampments, greatly expanding the program for both groups.

“This action will bring a more concentrated dialog to both units,” said Djuric. “Today, dialog happens at the unit level, but when it starts happening on a weekly basis at the command level, we will be better able to see how best practices … can be applied universally.”

Junior Air Force ROTC currently has 102,000 cadets nationwide and CAP has 22,000 cadets. Some young people retain memberships in both organizations, which have similar goals. Junior Air Force ROTC is basically an in-school program, while CAP cadets meet after school.

The two programs have previously cooperated on crossover activities, such as CAP offering orientation flights to Junior Air Force ROTC cadets and the Air Force inviting CAP cadets to attend its JROTC Honors Encampment this summer.

Meanwhile, CAP-USAF is also happy about reporting to the Holm Center. “The realignment allows CAP-USAF to offer emergency services training to Air Force ROTC and Junior ROTC students,” said CAP-USAF Commander Col. Bill Ward. “Being under the Holm Center also makes it easier to coordinate with ROTC and Officer Training School.”

CAP-USAF’s status as CAP program manager will remain unchanged. CAP-USAF will continue to be the primary interface to other federal agencies and will retain authority for approving CAP training and Air Force assigned missions. CAP-USAF will also keep daily operational control for joint tasking and will continue to review and make recommendations on CAP’s annual budget and program submissions.

Civil Air Patrol realigns with Holm Center

Air University Public Affairs

6/25/2009
MAXWELL AIR FORCE BASE, Ala. (AFNS)


Civil Air Patrol-U. S.Air Force realigned under the Jeanne M. Holm Center for Officer Accessions and Citizen Development in a ceremony held at the center's Leadership Hall June 11.

Lt. Gen. Allen Peck, Air University commander, said the realignment is part of the evolution of Air University and falls under the category of an organization change request, or OCR. He said it could have been done with "a simple signature on a piece of paper," but he felt it should be done with a ceremony.

General Peck said realigning CAP-USAF under the Holm Center is the appropriate place for the organization because much of what the organization does involves citizen development.

"When we reorganized Air University into centers, we looked at CAP's role. There are great people doing great things at CAP, such as emergency services and search and rescue, and CAP is the auxiliary of the U.S. Air Force," he said. "The realignment allows a lot of opportunity for synergy between CAP-USAF and the Holm Center, and this is a win-win situation that is good for both organizations."

Brig. Gen. Teresa Djuric, Holm Center commander, said the men and women of both CAP-USAF and the Holm Center recognize the importance of the realignment.

"CAP-USAF and the Holm Center have had a strong relationship for quite awhile now; a relationship that started long before the OCR," she said. "This action will bring a more concentrated dialogue to both units. Today, dialogue happens at the unit level, but when it starts happening on a weekly basis at the command level, we will be better able to see how best practices that have been proven successful can be applied universally. This is truly symbiotic."

Col. Bill Ward, CAP-USAF commander, said with the transition comes aerospace education and curriculum.

"For example, emergency services is a lot of what CAP does, and the realignment allows CAP-USAF to offer that training to Reserve Officer Training Corps, and Junior ROTC students," he said. "In one sense the move will be fairly seamless in nature, but in another sense, CAP-USAF will now have 'one-star advocacy' on a regular basis. Also, being under the Holm Center will make it easier to coordinate with ROTC and Officer Training School."

Colonel Ward said under the provisions of U.S. Code 10, CAP-USAF oversees the operation of Civil Air Patrol. He is confident Holm Center personnel will find that CAP-USAF can assist them with their programs and will hopefully take advantage of that aspect of the realignment.

Civil Air Patrol is the official auxiliary of the U.S. Air Force. In addition to providing emergency services, CAP-USAF personnel provide support, liaison and oversight to the more than 57,000 CAP cadets and volunteers.

27 June 2009

Morale: Ironman

Hat tip to Black Five.

Dick and Rick Hoyt

"He'll be a vegetable the rest of his life," Dick says doctors told him and his wife, Judy, when Rick was nine months old. "Put him in an institution."

"But the Hoyts weren't buying it. They noticed the way Rick's eyes followed them around the room. When Rick was 11 they took him to the engineering department at Tufts University and asked if there was anything to help the boy communicate. "No way," Dick says he was told. "There's nothing going on in his brain."

"Tell him a joke," Dick countered. They did. Rick laughed. Turns out a lot was going on in his brain."

"Rigged up with a computer that allowed him to control the cursor by touching a switch with the side of his head, Rick was finally able to communicate. First words? "Go Bruins!"

85 Triathalons later...

Morale: The Pacific

If you loved Band of Brothers, here comes its long awaited sequal - The Pacific, March 2010.

26 June 2009

CAP: CAP-USAF New Command Structure

Civil Air Patrol realigns with Holm Center

Posted 6/25/2009

by Carl Bergquist
Air University Public Affairs

6/25/2009 - MAXWELL AIR FORCE BASE, Ala. (AFNS) -- Civil Air Patrol-U. S.Air Force realigned under the Jeanne M. Holm Center for Officer Accessions and Citizen Development in a ceremony held at the center's Leadership Hall June 11.

Lt. Gen. Allen Peck, Air University commander, said the realignment is part of the evolution of Air University and falls under the category of an organization change request, or OCR. He said it could have been done with "a simple signature on a piece of paper," but he felt it should be done with a ceremony.

General Peck said realigning CAP-USAF under the Holm Center is the appropriate place for the organization because much of what the organization does involves citizen development.

"When we reorganized Air University into centers, we looked at CAP's role. There are great people doing great things at CAP, such as emergency services and search and rescue, and CAP is the auxiliary of the U.S. Air Force," he said. "The realignment allows a lot of opportunity for synergy between CAP-USAF and the Holm Center, and this is a win-win situation that is good for both organizations."

Brig. Gen. Teresa Djuric, Holm Center commander, said the men and women of both CAP-USAF and the Holm Center recognize the importance of the realignment.

"CAP-USAF and the Holm Center have had a strong relationship for quite awhile now; a relationship that started long before the OCR," she said. "This action will bring a more concentrated dialogue to both units. Today, dialogue happens at the unit level, but when it starts happening on a weekly basis at the command level, we will be better able to see how best practices that have been proven successful can be applied universally. This is truly symbiotic."

Col. Bill Ward, CAP-USAF commander, said with the transistion comes aerospace education and curriculum.

"For example, emergency services is a lot of what CAP does, and the realignment allows CAP-USAF to offer that training to Reserve Officer Training Corps, and Junior ROTC students," he said. "In one sense the move will be fairly seamless in nature, but in another sense, CAP-USAF will now have 'one-star advocacy' on a regular basis. Also, being under the Holm Center will make it easier to coordinate with ROTC and Officer Training School."

Colonel Ward said under the provisions of U.S. Code 10, CAP-USAF oversees the operation of Civil Air Patrol. He is confident Holm Center personnel will find that CAP-USAF can assist them with their programs and will hopefully take advantage of that aspect of the realignment.

Civil Air Patrol is the official auxiliary of the U.S. Air Force. In addition to providing emergency services, CAP-USAF personnel provide support, liaison and oversight to the more than 57,000 CAP cadets and volunteers.

25 June 2009

Morale: Wing needs more chairs!



Hat tip: Neptunuslex.com.

We need some new chairs at Wing. Almost anything would do, but this is right up the alley! Contributions welcome! This is the F4 model, but does it come in a 182 model?

CTWG: Wing Rocket Comp!


20 June 2009

The Cadets of the Connecticut Wing mustered at the Gadbois Farm in Salem Connecticut for the third running of the Commander's Cup Rocketry Competition. Under the guidance of CATO, the statewide organization of amateur rocket enthusiasts, five squadrons vied for honors in three specified categories.

Novice entrants had to present kit built rockets exhibiting a theme representative of their squadron. The historical category required the building of a rocket chosen for its importance in the development of rocket vehicles. This entry had to be accompanied by a 500 word essay explaining the reason for the choice and details of the vehicle.

The last category required a scratch built rocket based upon a mythological or comic character. Historical entries included variations on the Atlas Manned Flight Booster, the North American X-15, and the Raytheon Patriot air defense missile.

The scratch built entries were built on the themes of Icarus, Batman, and Snoopy.

First place in cumulative scoring was taken by the Thames River Composite Squadron based at Groton- New London Airport. Running a close second were the Royal Charter Composite Squadron Cadets out of Hartford-Brainard Airport. The New Haven Minutemen, East Granby's 103rd, and Manchester also participated.

The winning team members and their cadet grades are 2nd Lt. Jonathan Scannell of Griswold, Chief Master Sgt. Alexis Wojtcuk of Norwich, Senior Master Sgts. Shawn East of Oakdale, and Abigail Wojtcuk of Norwich, Master Sergeant George Abbiati of Quaker Hill, Senior Airman Patrick Dougherty of Waterford, and Airmen Jennifer Johnson of Gales Ferry and Annabelle Orlando of New London.

The above article was provided by Major Stephen M. Rocketto, PAO for the Thames River Squadron.

CTWG: Stratford gets a Spatz!

Hanscom AFB Concord, MA

Stratford Cadet Joseph Kraynak recently tested for the General Carl A. Spaatz award, the highest achievement for a cadet in the Civil Air Patrol.

Cadet Kraynak ran the mile in fewer than 6:23 minutes. Within the allotted time, he had to complete two other parts of the physical test. He chose to do the Sit and Reach, which he passed, and then had to complete a set number of “Curl Ups” (like crunches) within sixty seconds. He accomplished this easily.

For the second part of the examination he had to write an essay on a topic given to him by National Headquarters. What the topic was or what he wrote is unknown, but he had to complete the essay within one hour, which he did.

After a break for lunch, and then he took his Aerospace test for which he had an hour. He finished early. The test was administered and graded on-line. He received a grade of 90%.

He took another short break and took the Leadership exam for which he had another hour. Again, he finished early. The exam was taken and graded on-line. He received a grade of 85%.

The essay he had written was then e-mailed to National Headquarters by Lt Col Isabelle (CTWG CAP-USAF Liaison) to be graded.

Final Notice: He passed!

So, for the first time in at least the last three years, Stratford has a Spatz winner and a new cadet Col.

Using historical analysis, the CAP estimates that out of all the cadets who join the Civil Air Patrol (CAP):

15% will achieve the Mitchell Award (C/2nd Lt)
5% will achieve the Earhart Award (C/Captain)
2% will receive the Eaker (C/Lt Col), and only
0.16% cadets per year will obtain the Spaatz Award (C/Colonel).

That means, that on average, out of every 1,000 cadets who join CAP, only 5 will ever achieve the Spaatz during their service as cadets.

Cadet Col Kraynak, was feted on 18 June and soon after left for the cadet summer program at the United States Air Force Academy, where he hopes to qualify for medical school and eventually become a surgeon.

The above information was supplied by Lt Col David B. Oestreicher the Squadron Commander of the Stratford Eagles - CT022

CTWG: CT Budget Crisis!

At this time, the State of CT is locked in an epic budget battle. Unfortunately, CTWG has been hit in the crossfire. Presently, our CTWG State funding has been reduced to ZERO!

Its time to ramp up the voices. We request all members, senior and cadet alike write to your state senator and representative to let them know what CAP does and what the state will loose if they do not fund CTWG. We have a very spartan budget of only $39,400.00. This is the greatest bargain CT has ever had.

So far, the representatives contacted have been very positive with regard to restoring our funding. We still need to contact more! To this end, last Friday a group of seniors and cadets visited the CT State Capital and handed out flyer's to the Representatives explaining more about what we do. The visit was received very well.

Still, there are no promises. PLEASE, we still need you to write your representative and senator! For impact, don't email - write them in hard copy and mail it! We are having very positive responses to this approach.

Follow this link to see who represents you: http://cga.ct.gov/asp/menu/cgafindleg.asp

CTWG: HR 1178 - CAP and Homeland Security

Presently in Senate committee, HR 1178 is intended to expand CAPs ability to work with Homeland Security.

The bill was introduced by US Repreentative Charles Dent (PA). The bill requests an assesment of CAPs capabilies to support Homeland Security inititaves, assist in protecting our borders and critical infrastructure. This includes aerial surveilance, damage assesment, training services and becoming a critical part of a collective response to disasters, search and rescue operations and evacuations.

Previously, this bill was referred to as HR1333.

We at CTWG PA will keep our eye on it, however if you would like to track it too, go here: http://govtrack.us/congress/bill.xpd?bill=h111-1178

CTWG: Torrington Squadron Thanked by Local Board of Realtors

16 May, 2009

Congratulations on a job well done!

In cooperation with the Litchfield County Board of Realtors, the North West Hills squadron provided a work force of cadets to help construct a new home in the Falls Village Habitat project.

The Board of Realtors offered the following comment: "What a sight is was to arrive and see this group of young cadets helping to do whatever was asked of them."

The days activities were published in the litchfield.bz on-line magazine.

Information for this posting was provided by CT 062's PAO, 1Lt Linda Hull

CTWG: Always Vigilant is back on line!

AV has been off the net for a while while we worked out the new Connecticut Wing web site design. Its starting to take shape.

During that time, we have also decided to keep this weblog on line and not link it directly to the new web site. The general feeling; the content here although related and specific to CAP and CTWG often includes unofficial, open source news and entertainment content. Because of this, we feel it should exist as a semi-official communications tool that has an independent life of its own.

As always, comments are welcome.

CTWG PA

03 June 2009

CTWG: Visits Westover Air Reserve Base

Six Officers and seven Cadets of the Thames River Composite Squadron, Groton, CT visited Westover Air Reserve Base, Chicopee Falls, Massachusetts under the leadership of Lt Col Richard Doucette, Assistant Operations Officer. Col Doucette arranged a tour of the facilities of the 429th Airlift Wing with which he served during the latter part of his Air Force career. Squadron members were briefed by personnel at the Fire Department, the 337th Airlift Squadron, the FAA
Control Tower, and the 439th Aerospace Medical Squadron.

The Westover Department is manned by a corps of civilian firefighters who work 24 hour shifts. Wayne Wood, Ken McMorris, and their colleagues explained the operation of the department and pointed out the features of the standard and specialized equipment which are used to meet with the wide range of emergencies which might be expected at a military airbase. While we were there, a fire was reported at the base of the water tower and we observed a muster of the firefighting crew and the dispatch of their engine. The reported fire was actually a smoke-like cloud caused by sandblasting and the engine soon returned to its bay.

We next visited the flight line and boarded a Lockheed C-5B Galaxy and were briefed by Lt Col Carroll, MSgt Carroll, and TSgt Diwan on the duties of pilots, loadmasters, and flight engineers, and the details of the aircraft itself. The aircraft is as long as a football field and the cargo space on the C-5 is roughly equal in length to the first flight of the Wrights at Kitty Hawk. Fixtures for the loading and securing of cargo were shown and we visited the passenger compartment
located on an upper deck aft which can seat 73 passengers. The nose and tail hatches fully open rendering the cargo compartment into an open tube and loading can be further facilitated by a "kneeling" mechanism which allows the aircraft to lower its hatches to truck-bed height. A ramp allows wheel powered and tracked vehicles to drive on board. Other cargo, such as a helicopter or pallets can be loaded using a winch which is built into the aircraft hold.

The flight crew area on the upper deck contains bunk space and kitchen facilities to accommodate the crew which might number eight: three pilots, two flight engineers, and three loadmasters. Squadron members were allowed to study the various stations including the navigation position, now redundant since the installation of GPS as part of the glass cockpit.

The tower is an FAA facility manned by civilians. The crew explained the use of the various equipment, surveillance radar, radios, computers, runway and taxiway lighting system and the ubiquitos "biscuit gun" used to signal aircraft in the event of radio failure.

Our final stop was at the building which housed the Aero Medical Evacuation Squadron offices and equipment storage. Lt Col Marie Dufault, the Chief Flight Nurse, explained the mission of Aero Medical Evacuation and demonstrated some of the medical devices adapted for aircraft use.

All Squadron members benefited from the visit which increased our knowledge of four of the operational units which are necessary organs contributing to the global reach of the USAF Air Mobility Command.

Post from Capt Stephen M.Rocketto, Director of Aerospace Education, CTWG

CTWG: CT Wing Rifle Tournament

The Connecticut Wing of the Civil Air Patrol culminated a year long rifle safety and marksmanship program by conducting a Cadet rifle tournament at the Quaker Hill Rod and Gun Club.

The Thames River Composite Squadron, based at the Groton Airport, placed first with a score of 538 narrowly defeating the Meriden Silver City Squadron which carded 526 points. Hartford's Royal Charter Squadron placed third with a 497.

Thames River Cadet Airman First Class Timothy Ploude was high gun with a score of 196. Plourde is a Montville High School senior and member of their rifle team and will attend the University of Connecticut next year with a US Air Force ROTC scholarship.

Cadet Chief Master Sergeant George Planeta of the Silver City Squadron earned second place honors with a 195. Planeta attends Portland High School, a member of the Quaker Hill Junior Rifle Club, and will enroll as a Midshipman at the US Naval Academy in June.

Airman First Class Andrew Molinari of Uncasville, another Groton member placed third with a 186. The Cadets trained over the past year supported by funding from the Connecticut Friends of the NRA and gun clubs around the state. Over 100 Cadets participated and 77 earned NRA marksmanship honors.

Submitted by, Stephen M. Rocketto Director of Aerospace Education, CTWG

CTWG: Wing Trip to Washington DC

The below article was provided by Capt Stephen M. Rocketto, Director of Aerospace Activities, CTWG.

Connecticut Wing Sponsors Trip to National Capitol Area
Fourteen Cadets and five CAP Officers representing six squadrons departed Connecticut on April 13th for a five day visit to the Washington area.

Before checking into their quarters at Bolling Air Force Base, the group stopped at the National Security Agency's Vigilance Park on the way down wand viewed US Air Force, Navy, and Army aircraft flown for the NSA on signal intelligence operations.

The second day was spent at the National Air and Space Museum's Udvar-Hazy Annex at Dulles Airport exploring its vast collection of modern and classic aircraft.

The group split the third rainy and blustery day. In the morning, they visited the USMC Museum at Quantico , VA. and were briefed by docents on the Iwo Jima invasion and visited galleries housing exhibits from Marine history. They viewed the original flag raised over Mt. Suribachi, shivered in the cooled exhibit depicting "Frozen Chosin," and entered a Vietnam fire base through the vibrating hull of a Chinook helicopter.

In the afternoon, they traveled to the US Navy Aircraft Museum at the Patuxent River Naval Air Station, Lexington Park, Md, home to Navy experimental and developmental squadrons. Both a Boeing X-32 and a Lockheed-Martin F-35C were on exhibit along with a wide range of modern aircraft used by the test pilot school and development squadrons. A comprehensive indoor exhibit housed a collection of equipment an which complemented the aeronautical development work at Pax River.

On the fourth and last day, mercifully sunny and warm, the contingent went to the National Mall. They visited the National Archives and viewed the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution of the United States, spent a half day at the National Air and Space Museum on the Mall and explored the Mall itself. Sites visited included the Museum of National History, the Vietnam and World War II Memorials, the Lincoln Memorial, the White House, National Capital, and the Smithsonian Castle (where one found Jimmy Doolittle's goggles).

On the last day, the two vans separated. One headed for Arlington National Ceremony where they paid respects to those past warriors who have served our county and viewed the changing of the guard at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier.

The other van headed for the Air Mobility Museum at Dover Air Force Base in Delaware. The museum is dedicated to military airlift. The strains of the WWII ballad, "Coming in on a Wing and a Prayer" echoed across the ramp and a wide display of transport aircraft glistened in the mid morning sun. A background was provided by Lockheed C-5s practicing landings and takeoffs.

The docents were extraordinary helpful and opened up some aircraft so we could examine the interiors. These included the rare Lockheed C-133 Cargomaster and a Douglas C-54 veteran of the Berlin Airlift. The Cadets then assumed the position of paratroopers in a Lockheed C-130E Hercules and Mr. William Maroon, a former C-130 navigator, talked them through an airborne parachute drop.