By 2nd Lt. Don Van Wormer, CAP
St. Mary's Composite Squadron Public Affairs Officer
Cadets and senior members of the St. Mary's Composite Squadron from the Maryland Wing of the Civil Air Patrol participated in a search for a blue-and-white Cessna 172 that had taken off from Gaithersburg Airport April 26th, just after noon and did not return as expected by 2:30 p.m. that day. St. Mary's CAP members along with other Maryland and Pennsylvania CAP squadrons conducted search operations from April 26th through April 30th, focusing on areas of Carroll and Frederick counties in Maryland and the adjacent areas in Pennsylvania. The wreckage of the aircraft with no survivor was found on April 30th, in Franklin County, Pennsylvania, near the town of Mercersburg by CAP ground search teams.
St. Mary's ground team members included Cadets DeGruy, Brand, Webster, Bauldauff, Trick, Myers, Bowers, Herten, Evans, and Smith. Senior members participating were Col. Larry Trick, 1st Lt. Donny Cone, and 2nd Lt. David Webster.
CAP, the official auxiliary of the U.S. Air Force, is a nonprofit organization with more than 60,000 members nationwide. CAP volunteers perform 95 percent of continental U.S. inland search and rescue missions as tasked by the Air Force Rescue Coordination Center and also perform homeland security, disaster relief and counterdrug missions at the request of federal, state, and local agencies.
Members take a leading role in aerospace education and serve as mentors to the almost 25,000 young people currently participating in the CAP Cadet Program. CAP's cadet programs provide young men and women with a safe and motivating environment in which to grow and explore opportunities in the military and aviation industries. Cadets progress through a 16-step program of leadership and aerospace education. CAP has been performing missions for America for 65 years.
There are approximately 1,300 members of CAP in Maryland. Last fiscal year wing members flew 34 search and rescue missions and were credited with 23 finds.
For information about the Maryland Wing of CAP, visit http://mdcap.org/ or listen to weekly episodes of "Civil Air Patrol Today" broadcast every Sunday morning on the following radio stations:
* Annapolis, MD - WYRE-AM 810, 8:00-8:30 AM ET
* Baltimore, MD - WFBR AM 1590, 8:00-8:30 AM ET
* Ocean City, MD - WKHZ-AM 1590, 7:00-7:30 AM ET
* Potomac, MD - WCTN 950 AM, 6:00-6:30 AM ET
* Rockville, MD - WLXE-AM 1600, 7:00-7:30 AM ET
* Washington, DC - WZHF-AM 1390, 7:00-7:30 AM ET
In addition, programs may be listened to at the Maryland Wing web site at http://mdcap.org/radio/ and can also be subscribed to as a podcast.
The St. Mary's Composite Squadron meets Wednesday evenings from 7-9 p.m. at the St. Mary's County Regional Airport, in the Capt. Walter Francis Duke terminal building, and is commanded by 1st Lt. Donald W. Cone Jr. For information, please visit the squadron's web site at http://www.capstmarys.com/.