The local Corsicana Civil Air Patrol Squadron, the Corsicana Thunderchiefs, had four cadets – Cadet Airmen Ana Alvarado, Cadet Airmen Samuel Alvarado, Cadet Airman Mark Pineda, and Cadet Airmen First Class Kate Whearley, fly on their first Orientation flight with the CAP on Monday, March 12th. The aircraft that was used for these Orientation Flights came from the Granbury Squadron, TX-441. All the cadets enjoyed their first flight and asked to go again on the next available Orientation Flight.
The CAP Orientation Flight Program introduces cadets to general aviation through hands-on orientation flights in single engine aircraft and gliders. Each cadet can have Orientation Flights (O-Flights) from glider to powered flights; Texas cadets gain first-hand knowledge of aviation, with opportunities to not only ride in aircraft, but to place their hands on the controls and FLY the aircraft!
The program’s motto describes what cadet flying is all about: “Safe, Fun, Educational.” The program is limited to current CAP cadets under 18 years of age. At no time will cadets sustain any costs associated with this program.
Each cadet is eligible for 10 O-Flights which are fully-funded by the US Air Force. Five of these flights are in a glider, and the other five are in powered aircraft. However, a cadet may ride back-seat as many times as they wish. Each flight will focus on a specific aspect of aviation, and there is a Learning Syllabus for each flight. Before, during, and after the flight cadets will have a hands-on approach to learning about how airplanes work, the preflight inspection and safety practices. Cadets will be allowed to handle the flight controls, under the pilot’s supervision, during the non-critical phases of flight (not during take-off or landing).
You can visit the Corsicana Thunderchiefs at the Mildred High School on Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. For more information on the cadet programs, how to join or how to fly with the Civil Air Patrol as a cadet (12-18 years of age) or as a Senior Member (21+ years), and see how you can help out your community.