Latest Cadet Awards

Last Thursday night, a number of MVCS cadets were recognized in front of the squadron and their families.  A couple of our cadets were recognized for multiple accomplishments.  The MVCS Cyber Patriot Team was also recognized.

  • C/A1C Heros kevork Hagop Avedissian completed the H. H. Hap Arnold Achievement

    C/SrA Marcus Wilson is promoted in recognition of his completing the Mary Feik Achievement.  Photo by 2d Lt. Mark Patrick
    C/SrA Marcus Wilson is promoted in recognition of his completing the Mary Feik Achievement. Photo by 2d Lt. Mark Patrick
  • C/SrA Andrew Cameron and C/SrA Marcus Wilson completed Mary Feik Achievement
  • C/SMSgt Josh Pavek completed the Mary Feik and Jimmy Doolittle Achievements
  • C/2d Lt. Michael Jurkoic received the Billy Mitchell Award and the Cadet Community Service Ribbon.  This ribbon is awarded to members who complete 60 hours of community service outside of Civil Air Patrol.  The service must be verified by a volunteer coordinator.
  • C/TSgt Thad Smith completed the Eddie Eddie Rickenbacker Achievement
  • C/SMSgt Austin Croy and C/SMSgt Harrison Cox completed the Jimmy Doolittle Achievement
  • C/1st Lt. Aidan Kress completed the requirements for for Administrative Officer

 

 

 

 

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Promotions, awards and holiday celebrating

1st Lt Joseph Murphy assists with the promotion of his son C/Maj Thomas Murphy to his new rank. Photo by 2d Lt Mark Patrick.
1st Lt Joseph Murphy assists with the promotion of his son C/Maj Thomas Murphy to his new rank. Photo by 2d Lt Mark Patrick.

After safety and aerospace training on the evening of 18 December, MVCS cadets and senior members came together to recognize those earning promotions and awards.  Following the ceremony, they celebrated with a holiday pot luck meal.

Cadets promoted included:  C/TSgt Kelia Aardema (Rickenbacker Achievement); C/SrA Maxwell Albrecht, C/SrA Gabriel Ramiscal (Mary Feik Achievement); C/MSgt Josh Pavek (Lindbergh Achievement), C/SMSgt Brian Cochran (Doolittle Achievement), C/CMSgt Anith Muthalaly (Goddard Achievement), C/SSgt Matthew Cox (Wright Brothers Award). Additionally, C/CMSgt Sean Callis was awarded the Armstrong Achievement.

The awardees were joined by many from their extended families to celebrate their accomplishments at the end of a very eventful year.

Cadets and Senior Members of MVCS and their families share a holiday pot luck meal following the awards ceremony.  Photo by 2d Lt Mark Patrick.
Cadets and Senior Members of MVCS and their families share a holiday pot luck meal following the awards ceremony. Photo by 2d Lt Mark Patrick.

Recent MVCS Cadet Achievements

C/Amn Andrew Cameron, C/TSgt Harrison Cox, C/TSgt Austin Croy and C/CMSgt Clare Porter receive recognition. Photo by 2d Lt Mark Patrick.
C/Amn Andrew Cameron, C/TSgt Harrison Cox, C/TSgt Austin Croy and C/CMSgt Clare Porter receive recognition.
Photo by 2d Lt Mark Patrick.

At Thursday’s recognition-packed meeting of MVCS, in addition to C/2d Lt Abbe’s Billy Mitchell Award, four additional cadets were honored.  Squadron Commander, Lt Col Lou Volchansky, presided at the ceremony.

C/Amn Andrew Cameron completed the Hap Arnold Achievement which is accompanied by promotion to C/A1C.

C/TSgts Harrison Cox and Austin Troy completed the Lindbergh Achievement which is accompanied by promotion to C/MSgt.

C/MSgt Clare Porter completed the Armstrong Achievement which is accompanied by a ribbon.

Latest Promotions

23 Oct 2014
C/CMSgt Coleman and C/Amn Gysen are promoted on 23 October 2014. Photo by 2d Lt Mark Patrick.

C/CMSgt Coleman and C/Amn Gysen were promoted at Thursday evening’s meeting of MVCS.  The squadron commander, Lt Col Volchansky, pinned on the cadets new rank insignia joined by parents and family members.  Congratulations!

The promotions were preceded by presentations given by senior members on fire safety, aerospace (the chandelle maneuver), and land navigation.

This weekend cadets plan to take a tour of the Pentagon.  Does this sound like fun to you?  Why not join us?

1st Lt Joseph Gruber’s Photo of the Lunar Eclipse Goes Viral

Photo by 1st Lt Joseph Gruber
Lunar eclipse over the U.S. Air Force Memorial on 8 October 2014.
Photo by 1st Lt Joseph Gruber

Our own 1st Lt Joseph Gruber didn’t set out to do anything other than take a cool photo on 8 October 2014, but his handiwork has certainly gained attention.

Gruber’s social media posting led to the Air Force Times picking up the photo along with its parent Military Times.  Click to see the article there.  It was then picked up by CAP’s Volunteer Now.  It certainly helped that the photo was set over the Air Force Memorial.

As the importance of photography increases as part of CAP’s Emergency Services mission, it’s encouraging to see members honing their skills!  You can find plenty of information on CAP’s web site about this part of our mission.  For example, this set of training slides, or this Checklist and Operations Manual for the Nikon D90 Camerat Kit.

 

MVCS Changes of Command

On Thursday, April 24, 2014, NATCAP Wing Commander Col. Bruce Heinlein presided over the change of command of Mount Vernon Composite Squadron.  1st Lt. Kevin Geiss relinquished command and Lt. Col. Lou Volchansky assumed command.  In his remarks, Col. Heinlein praised the accomplishments of MVCS under the command of 1st Lt. Geiss and thanked him and his family for their service and sacrifice for the benefit of the squadron’s volunteers.  1st Lt. Geiss’s son, C/SMSgt Benjamin Geiss, has been active in the MVCS cadet program, making CAP a family affair.

1st Lt. Geiss served as the squadron’s Public Affairs Officer prior to assuming command.  He also holds Public Information Officer, Mission Observer, Mission Scanner, Mission Staff Assistant, and Liaison Officer qualifications.  A Department of Defense civil servant at the Senior Executive Service level, he finishes his duties as Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Air Force for Energy and moves on with his family to a new civil service posting in Ohio.

Lt. Col. Volchansky, a civil servant with the Federal Aviation Administration, first became affiliated with CAP as a cadet with the Monticello Composite Squadron.  A retired U.S. Air Force pilot and Certified Flight Instructor, he has been serving as the MVCS Safety Officer.

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Lt. Col. Lou Volchansky receives the guidon from Col. Bruce Heinlein. Photo by 2d Lt. Mark Patrick.
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1st Lt. Kevin Geiss passes the guidon to Col. Bruce Heinlein. Photo by 2d Lt. Mark Patrick.

 

Later in the evening, Lt. Col. Volchansky presided over the cadet change of command.  C/Lt. Col. Joseph Frech relinquished command, and C/Capt. Nicholas Johnson assumed command.

C/Lt. Col. Frech plans to attend Old Dominion University and will participate in the U.S. Marine Corps’ Platoon Leader Class, one of the paths to becoming a Marine Corps officer.  C/Lt. Col. Frech’s father, Capt. Joe Frech, commands the Challenger 1 Cadet Squadron.  Both of C/Capt. Johnson’s siblings are MVCS cadets and both his parents are senior members.

C/Lt. Col. Joseph Frech relinquishes command by passing the guidon to Lt. Col. Lou Volchansky.  Photo by 2d Lt. Mark Patrick.
C/Lt. Col. Joseph Frech relinquishes command by passing the guidon to Lt. Col. Lou Volchansky. Photo by 2d Lt. Mark Patrick.
C/Capt. Nicholas Johnson assumes command, taking the guidon from Lt. Col. Lou Volchansky.  Photo by 2d Lt. Mark Patrick.
C/Capt. Nicholas Johnson assumes command, taking the guidon from Lt. Col. Lou Volchansky. Photo by 2d Lt. Mark Patrick.

 

 

Cadet Achievements Recognized

On January 23rd, a number of MVCS superlatives were recognized at a squadron meeting.  Two CyberPatriot teams were recognized.

The MVCS drill team was presented with the National Cadet Competition Ribbon.

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Drill Team and sponsors, left to right:  1st Lt Duane Johnson, 2d Lt Lydia Johnson, C/2d Lt Hunter Harlow, C/MSgt Alexander Johnson, C/SrA Jonathan Ruscoe, C/Lt Col Joe Frech, C/Capt Nicholas Johnson, C/1st Lt Thomas Murphy, C/SSgt Madeline Johnson, C/SrA Mary Ruscoe, C/SrA Austin Croy, Capt Joe Frech. Photo by 2d Lt Mark Patrick

Three cadets were presented the Academic Cord, C/Capt Nicholas Johnson, C/MSgt Alexander Johnson, C/SSgt Madeline Johnson.  Per NATCAP Supplement 1 to CAPR 39-3, “Cadets earning a GPA of 3.5 to 3.9 (or equivalent) will wear a blue and white shoulder cord. Cadets earning a 4.0 GPA or above (or equivalent) will wear a blue and silver shoulder cord.”

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MVCS commander 1st Lt Kevin Geiss presents C/SSgt Madeline Johnson with the Wright Brothers Award.  Photo by 2d Lt Mark Patrick.

In addition to the above, the following achievements and awards were presented:

C/CMSgt Gabriel Abbe (not pictured) received the Neil A. Armstrong Achievement, the fifth achievement in Phase II, “the leadership phase.”

C/SSgt Madeline Johnson was presented with the Wright Brothers Award for successfully completing all Phase I requirements.  Phase I is dubbed, “the learning phase,” upon completion of which cadets move on to Phase II, “the leadership phase.”

C/A1C Marcus Wilson and C/A1C Thad Smith earned the Hap Arnold Achievement.  This is the second of four achievements in Phase I, “the learning phase.”

Cadet Matthew Cox received the Curry Achievement, the first achievement in Phase I.

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C/A1C Marcus Wilson and C/A1C Thad Smith earned the Hap Arnold Achievement. Photo by 2d Lt Mark Patrick.
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1st Lt Kevin Geiss, MVCS commander, congratulates Cadet Matthew Cox for receiving the Curry Achievement. Photo by 2d Lt Mark Patrick.
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1st Lt Kevin Geiss, commander of MVCS, congratulates C/Capt James Hildebrand upon his receiving the Cadet Recruiter Ribbon. Photo by 2d Lt Mark Patrick.

C/Capt James Hildebrand received the Cadet Recruiter Ribbon.  The Recruiter Ribbon is awarded by the unit commander to cadets and senior members in recognition of outstanding efforts to recruit new members for CAP.  It is awarded to cadets who recruit two new qualified cadets or senior members for CAP.

Cadet Colonel Alexander Fry Earns Spaatz Award

Lt Col Tom McGrath congratulates C/Lt Col Alexander Fry on earning his private pilot's license.  Photo by Lt Col Jonathan Fry.
Lt Col Tom McGrath congratulates C/Lt Col Alexander Fry on earning his private pilot’s license.File Photo by Lt Col Jonathan Fry.

On January 4, 2014, C/Col Alexander Fry earned the Gen. Carl A. Spaatz Award, and along with it promotion to his current rank.

The Gen. Carl A. Spaatz Award is the Civil Air Patrol’s highest cadet honor.  It is presented to cadets who have demonstrated excellence in leadership, character, fitness, and aerospace education.  Gen. Carl A. Spaatz was the First Chief of Staff of the United States Air Force and first Chairman of the CAP National Board.

Cadets qualify for this prestigious award after devoting an average of five years to progress through sixteen achievements in the CAP Cadet Program. Along the way they develop self-discipline, a strong sense of personal responsibility, the ability to lead and persuade, and the foundation necessary for pursuing a career in aviation, space, or technology.

C/Col Fry is the 1,918th cadet to earn the award since it was established in 1963.  He has been a member since 2008. 

November Awards and Promotions

MVCS cadets received the following awards and promotions at our meeting last Thursday evening.  Congratulations to all!

Joseph Frech Gen Ira Eaker Award C/Lt Col
James Hildebrand Earhart Award C/Capt
Thomas Murphy Administrative Officer C/1st Lt
Josiah Coleman Jimmy Doolittle Achievement C/SMSgt
Alexander Johnson Jimmy Doolittle Achievement C/MSgt
Madeline Johnson Wright Brothers Award C/SSgt
Thomas Pidgeon H. H. “Hap” Arnold Achievement C/A1C
Joseph Abbe Mary Feik Achievement C/SrA
Thad Smith Maj Gen John F. Curry Achievement C/Amn
Nicholas Johnson VFW Cadet NCO Award C/1st Lt
Benjamin Geiss VFW Cadet NCO Award C/SMSgt

The squadron was pleased to have Mr. Bud Bishop, a representative from VFW Post 7327 in Springfield, appear to present Cadet NCO awards to MVCS members Johnson and Geiss.

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C/Lt Col Joseph Frech, posing with his parents, is awarded the Gen Ira Eaker Achievement.
Photo by 2d Lt Mark Patrick.
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C/Capt James Hildebrand, pictured here with MVCS Commander 1st Lt Kevin Geiss, is awarded the Amelia Earhart Achievement.
Photo by 2d Lt Mark Patrick.
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MVCS Award recipients.
Photo by 2d Lt Mark Patrick.
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C/1st Lt Nicholas Johnson, posing with his parents and VFW Post 7327 representative Bud Bishop, receives the VFW’s Cadet NCO Award.
Photo by 2d Lt Mark Patrick.
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C/SMSgt Benjamin Geiss, appearing with his parents, accepts the VFW Cadet NCO Award from VFW Post 7327 representative Bud Bishop.
Photo by 2d Lt Mark Patrick.

This Week’s Awards and Promotions

 

Cadets recognized at MVCS's 25 July 2013 meeting.  Photo by 2d Lt Mark Patrick.
Cadets recognized at MVCS’s 25 July 2013 meeting. Photo by 2d Lt Mark Patrick. 

Thursday evening at MVCS’s regular meeting, seven cadets were recognized for various achievements.  C/2d Lts Thomas Murphy and Hunter Harlow were presented with the Billy Mitchell Award ribbon and accompanying promotion.  This award marks the end of the enlisted phase of the cadet program.

C/SSgt Alexander Johnson earned the Wright Brothers Award, marking the transition to Non-Commissioned Officer status.

C/SrA Benjamin Youngs was presented with the Mary Feik Achievement ribbon and promotion for successfully completing the specific requirements of Achievement 3 in Phase I of the cadet program, and an Academic Cord.

C/TSgt Jason Arquette was presented the Eddie Rickenbacker Achievement ribbon and accompanying promotion.

C/A1c Madeline Johnson was presented the Hap Arnold Achievement ribbon and promotion.

C/1st Lt James Hildebrand was recognized for completing the requirements for Administrative Officer.