Maryland Air Guard Hosts Civil Air Patrol

  • Published
  • By Master Sgt. Edward Bard
  • 175th Wing Public Affairs
Civil Air Patrol cadets were treated to orientation flights (referred to as "O-flights") at Warfield Air National Guard Base in Middle River, Md., recently.

From July 20 to 22, a Maryland Air National Guard C-130 and with a CH-47 helicopter from the Army National Guard carried the cadets on the local flights, which are aimed at exposing the cadets to military flight operations.

"Part of the encampment experience is to understand that one of the main missions of the CAP is aerospace education.... It allows the cadets to see military aircraft up close," Cadet Maj. Matt Herten, 2010 Tri-Wing Encampment, cadet commandant, said.  "The Maryland Army, Air Guard and the Air Force in general are big supporters of the CAP program." CAP Cadet Major Herten has obtained his private pilot license and currently attends Penn State University.

"This may be the first time any of the cadets get to ride in military aircraft," CAP Capt. Marty Sacks, a cadet orientation/mission pilot and CAP liaison, said. "I know the experience is an enjoyable one for the cadets."

The flights lasted approximately 45-50 minutes in the local flying area. During their O-flights, cadets were able to see many regional landmarks like the Naval Academy, the Chesapeake Bay Bridge, downtown Baltimore and Phillips Army Airfield at Aberdeen Proving Ground.

In addition to the flights, the cadets visited the base fire department and witnessed a display of the fire trucks' capabilities to suppress fires.  

The cadets also had a chance to see inside of the cockpit of an A-10C attack jet. Tech. Sgt. Antonio "Tony" Queen, a crew chief from the 175th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron, manned A-10 static display and answered the many questions from the cadets.

The CAP expressed appreciation for the Army and Air National Guard for the O-flights and Lt. Jason Hearne from the Fire Dept and Tech Sgt. Tony Queen for the mini tours.

According to CAP's website, the encampment is the most significant and worthwhile training experiences in a CAP cadet's career. It is a seven-day basic training-like program and is required for the prestigious Billy Mitchell Award. Encampment is designed to develop a greater understanding of the CAP and the Air Force missions and capabilities, personal and team leadership and team work.

The cadets will end their Tri-Wing Encampment on July 25, 2010.