DANVILLE — Where can you stay for 7 days and nights, have three meals a day provided, go swimming often, go to the rifle range, ride in a Blackhawk helicopter and repel from a 60 feet tower? The place would be the WV Wing Civil Air Patrol Summer Encampment, and three young people from Boone County were among 107 outstanding young people from all over West Virginia who experienced all of those activities and many more from June 20 through June 27 at Camp Dawson in Kingwood.
For Cadet Airman First Class Randi Buckner, Cadet Shyanne Trent and Cadet Jordan Adkins, it was their first Summer Encampment and they were full of laughter, stories and excitement at the end of the week.
Encampment is the premier event for CAP cadets, many of whom return year after year, not only for the exciting activities, but for the leadership training they receive in the cadet-run Encampment.
Adult CAP members provide logistical support and supervisory oversight, while the cadets, who are divided into flights and under the command of cadet officers, sleep in the barracks, eat in the mess hall and participate in numerous activities and competitions.
Every cadet hopes that at the end of the week his or her flight will receive the coveted title of Honor Flight for being the most outstanding flight in the Encampment.
In addition to those listed above, other activities for 2015 included a Confidence Course, Physical Fitness Training, Water Survival, Outdoor Survival, Electronic Firing Range, and Drill & Ceremonies.
Civil Air Patrol, the official auxiliary of the U.S. Air Force, is a nonprofit organization with 58,000 members nationwide, operating a fleet of 550 aircraft. CAP, in its Air Force auxiliary role, performs about 85 percent of continental U.S. inland search and rescue missions as tasked by the Air Force Rescue Coordination Center and is credited by the AFRCC with saving an average of 70 lives annually.
It’s unpaid professionals also perform homeland security, disaster relief and drug interdiction missions at the request of federal, state and local agencies. The members play a leading role in aerospace education and serve as mentors to more than 24,000 young people currently participating in the CAP cadet programs.
Performing missions for America for the past 73 years, CAP received the Congressional Gold Medal in 2014 in honor of the heroic efforts of its World War II veterans. CAP also participates in Wreaths Across America, an initiative to remember, honor and teach about the sacrifices of the U.S. military veterans.
Visit www.capvolunteernow.com for more information.