Cell Phone Forensics Team Credited; Desmarais, Operations Director: ‘Technology is the Key’
Col. Martha Morris, Arizona Wing commander, calls Civil Air Patrol’s National Cell Phone Forensics Team “The League of Secret Super Heroes.” “They work in the dark of night, many hours, sifting data and saving lives with no one knowing who they are or what they do,” she said.
The team, consisting of Col. Brian Ready and Maj. Jerad Hoff in Arizona and Maj. Justin Ogden in Virginia, is one of the main reasons CAP has been credited with 101 saves so far in fiscal year 2017, far above the organization’s annual average of 80. CAP crossed the search and rescue century mark for the year this past weekend, when the cell phone team was credited with two more saves by the Air Force Rescue Coordination Center.
“Technology is the key,” said John Desmarais, CAP’s director of operations. “The cellular forensics guys are continuing to provide more and more assistance every day, and making huge impacts.”
The weekend missions involved an injured hiker on Crestone Peak in Segauche County, Colorado, and a missing brother and sister who had been hiking Three Fingered Jack, a mountian in Linn County, Oregon.“In the latter case,” Hoff said, the pair “had called 911 but the coordinates from the 911 system didn’t match with the location the objectives said they were at.”
The cellphone team works with ground search and rescue teams to narrow search areas by using data obtained from cellphones to focus on specific locations.
Two Arizona Wing cadets were selected to participate in the International Air Cadet Exchange (IACE), which represents the United States to citizens of countries all over the world. Cadet Maj. Jacob Little is visiting New Zealand and Cadet Lt. Col. Cameron Roach is visiting South Korea this month to work with other teenagers from more than 19 countries, learning about them and sharing their mutual love for aviation and youth leadership.
Cadets Little and Roach are two of only 36 people in the country to be selected for this year’s exchange. Lt Col. Peggy Myrick is the director of the Exchange in America. “It’s very competitive,” said Myrick, “and being selected means showing a maturity far beyond one’s age and being a true leader in their community.” Applicants must have earned the Amelia Earhart Award in the CAP cadet program, which fewer than 5 percent of all cadets achieve.
I am pleased to announce the 2017 Arizona Wing Award Winners. These individuals have served AZWG and CAP with dedication and professionalism, performing well above the standard requirements and expectations of our organization. These awards were presented at the Arizona Wing Conference in Flagstaff, 2-3 June 2017.
AZ WING OF THE YEAR AWARDS*
Aerospace Education Officer of the Year – 2d Lt Kevin Hopwood
Cadet of the Year- C/Lt Col Katherine Hamiel
Cadet NCO Of the Year – C/SMSgt Deon Kathleen Bryant
Cadet Programs Officer of the Year – 2d Lt Amber O’Donnell
Communications Officer of the Year – Lt Col Daniel Riley
Drug Demand Reduction Officer of the Year – Capt Jean-Marie Nixon
Emergency Services Officer of the Year – Maj Paul Combellick
Finance Officer of the Year – Capt Brian Tucek
Maintenance Officer of the Year – Lt Col James Fendley
Operations Officer of the Year – Maj David Roden
Property Management Officer of the Year – Capt Michael Miller
Senior Member of the Year – 1st Lt Mari Lynn Hamiel
Squadron of the Year- Verde Valley Composite Squadron 205
Squadron Commander of the Year – Maj Albert Barker
Supply Officer of the Year – Capt Vanessa Urbana
*All ”Of the Year” award recipients also received a Commander’s Commendation.
AZ Wing CAP members were eyes in the skies and on the ground for a three-day precautionary SAR mission along the Colorado River during the Memorial Day holiday weekend. Based out of the Lake Havasu airport and a Mohave Sheriff’s Department joint operations center, ground teams (including K-9s and their handlers) and flight crews worked with local, state, and federal agencies to ensure a safe holiday weekend for people celebrating on the river. It was also a chance to work with the new DAART (Domestic Operation Assessment & Awareness Response Tool), which is designed to provide simultaneous sharing of full-motion video, imagery and situational awareness information to Incident Management teams.
MAXWELL AIR FORCE BASE, Ala. – From May 21 to 28, 86 of Civil Air Patrol’s rising leaders gathered in Alabama for a weeklong activity to sharpen their skills for executive-level success in CAP. National Staff College, coordinated out of CAP National Headquarters at Maxwell AFB, is an annual professional development opportunity instrumental in CAP’s success as a premier public service organization in America and as the U.S. Air Force auxiliary.
The college is designed for Civil Air Patrol senior members who are, or will be, assuming leadership positions at the wing, regional or national levels within CAP.
From Arizona Wing Headquarters, Lt. Cols. Rob Pinckard, Chief of Staff and Linda Yaeger, Executive Officer completed NSC. Tucson Composite Squadron 105 Commander Lt. Col. A.C. Sperling also is a member of the 2017 NSC class.
“National Staff College helps our adult officers build their professional development portfolios and enhance their leadership experience,” said CAP National Commander Maj. Gen. Joe Vazquez. “Their week at Maxwell will help them become better leaders in CAP and in their communities.”
The curriculum included seminar discussions, case studies and exercises, along with presentations by top officials inside and outside the organization. Participants in the seven-day course concentrate on executive leadership, management, organizational behavior and policy formulation while examining CAP’s national-level operations in great detail.
The benefits extend beyond Civil Air Patrol. The leadership, communication and executive management skills, made available through the course at a fraction of what such classes would cost at various schools and universities, are in high demand by employers in all industries.
The training at National Staff College is a requirement for earning the Gill Robb Wilson Award, CAP’s highest professional development achievement. Because of the course’s graduate-level design and its focus on national-level operations, participation is usually restricted to members who hold the CAP grade of major or above and chief and senior master sergeants who have completed CAP’s Region Staff College or its equivalent and have received their wing commander’s endorsement.
Wilson Family’s Flying Legacy Dates Back to World War I
By Steve Cox, NHQ Public Affairs
Dr. Heather A. Wilson, confirmed recently as the 24th secretary of the U.S. Air Force, has a very special connection to Civil Air Patrol.
Her beloved grandfather, George G. “Scotty” Wilson, was among the original members of CAP, joining the New Hampshire Wing during the earliest days of World War II and later serving as one of the first commanders of the wing.
Scotty Wilson’s influence on Wilson is undeniable.
“He certainly told a lot of flying stories,” said Wilson, recalling her grandfather’s tales of being a barnstorming pilot in New England in the 1920s and 1930s and towing targets for Civil Air Patrol in the 1940s.
“He and I were always pretty close,” she said. “I felt he had a sweet spot for me.”
Read the full article here.
Five other members around the state reported that they have given blood at their local donation centers in the last week, bringing the current total blood donation from the Wing to 35 units. These donations essentially give the Wing six potential saves over the next couple of weeks as the blood is used to help accident victims and others in desperate need of donated blood.
Phase II of Operation Pulse Lift is scheduled for August 11, 2017, at Falcon Field. The longer-term plan is to hold a third blood donation event on Saturday, December 2, 2017, as a part of the Spirit of 76 – 76th Anniversary/Birthday Party at Falcon Field.
The American Red Cross workers were extremely pleased with the Falcon Squadron capabilities and support, saying that it is a perfect blood drawing center. As a result, it has been now listed as an Emergency Blood Drawing Center for them. Should there be an unannounced call-out for blood (for example, in a distant emergency in the state or if another donation center has to cancel at the last minute), the Red Cross will call on CAP to back them up by providing a location for an Emergency Blood Draw.
In a ceremony at the Arizona Commemorative Air Force Museum in Mesa, Robert Joyner of Apache Junction, Arizona, received a Congressional Gold Medal for his service in the Civil Air Patrol during World War II.
During the ceremony, Joyner said, “I have belonged to many different organizations in my life, but the one that had the most impact was the Civil Air Patrol. It opened doors for me that I never would have imagined.”
The medal is awarded by the United States Congress and is the highest civilian award in the U.S., on par with the Presidential Medal of Freedom.
In 2014, Congress approved legislation to award a Congressional Gold Medal to members of the Civil Air Patrol who served during World War II. After Joyner contacted CAP National Headquarters, it was determined that his World War II-era service made him eligible to receive the medal. U.S. Representative Andrew Biggs and CAP Arizona Wing Commander Col. Martha Morris recognized Joyner at the ceremony and presented his medal. Arizona State Senator David Farnsworth and Apache Junction Mayor Jeff Serdy also attended.
Joyner joined the CAP as a cadet in 1942 while attending high school. When asked why he joined the CAP, Joyner said, “It was the thing to do back in those days and because I loved airplanes so much. It was my way to contribute to the national war effort.” He transferred to the Senior Squadron located at Weir Cook Municipal Airport in Indianapolis in June 1945. In September 1945, he was promoted to the grade of Warrant Officer, which he held until his enlistment in the U.S. Army Air Forces.
Joyner became an airborne photographer and was selected as an instructor on B-24 bombers for active duty airborne photography operations. He served two and a half years, leaving the newly formed U.S. Air Force as a Non-Commissioned Officer. After his military service, he worked in the nuclear and chemical industries. He returned to his home state of Arizona and currently resides in Apache Junction. Joyner and his wife, Verna, have eight children. Two of their sons carried on the family tradition, serving proudly in the U.S. Air Force.
Learn more about the Civil Air Patrol Congressional Gold Medal.
SM Nancy Parra-Quinlan, a new member of Falcon Composite Squadron 305 in Mesa, has been selected by the Frank Luke Chapter of the Air Force Association as its nominee for 2017 Aerospace Education Teacher of the Year. She will compete with the three nominees from Arizona AFA chapters for the state title, and if successful, will go on to the regional and national competition. Parra-Quinlan is a master teacher and has been teaching aerospace and science for more than 20 years for the Mesa Public Schools. She was previously a CAP Aerospace Education Member.