Two FMCS Cadets Enjoy the Thrill of Flight PDF Print E-mail
Written by Will Kool   
Saturday, 23 July 2011 00:00

2 FMCS Cadet experience thrill of flight

MIDDLE RIVER, MD – Two cadets from the Fort McHenry Composite Squadron of the Civil Air Patrol participated in a Cadet Orientation Flight (aka COF or O-Flight) on Saturday, July 23, 2011, originating at Martin State Airport in northeast Baltimore. Each cadet in Civil Air Patrol is entitled to the extraordinary benefit of 5 free powered flights and 5 free unpowered (glider) flights, which are designed to help excite cadets to pursue aersopace careers, teach the practical application of knowledge gained from their Aerospace Education classes, and provide them with a fun, rewarding, and memorable experience. The flights were conducted in a CAP Cessna 182 aircraft, piloted by Captain Marty Sacks, also of the Ft. McHenry Composite Squadron.



Cadet Senior Airman Sennsa Imhotep took his 5th flight, and flew in the front seat on the first leg across the Chesapeake Bay to Easton Airport. The syllabus for the 5th powered flight includes safety, cloud types, weather briefings, how weather affects a flight, terrain, crab method of correction for wind drift, wake turbulence avoidance, and how temperature and altitude affect aircraft performance. C/SrA Darrell Nunley completed his 3rd O-Flight up front during the return leg from Easton back to Martin State. He followed powered syllabus 4, which covers safety, navigation and flight instruments, climbs, turns, the magnetic compass, and the relationship between attitude and airspeed. Both cadets were able to handle the controls durning their flights and gain real flight experience.

Captain Sacks served as the Mission Pilot and Pilot in Command. He provided instruction and supervision while the cadets flew, and per CAP regulations, handled everything below 1000 feet, to include startup, taxi, takeoff, landing, and shutdown portions of the flight. The cadets were further involved in helping ensure the completion of all checklist items during each phase of the flight.

Project Officer 1st Lt William Kool provided ground activities while everyone waited a couple hours for an isolated thunderstorm to pass prior to the flight. The cadets learned about online resources for determining current weather conditions, analyzing the weather forcast and synopsis, interpreting radar information, requirements for VFR flight, and the process of making a sound “go/no go” decision. Lt Kool also gave the cadets a tour in his car of the airport hangars, ramp, and non-movement area, with particular focus and attention to airport surface markings and signs.

Incidentally, while taxiing to the end of Runway 33 at Martin State for initial takeoff, the CAP flight crew witnessed the blunder of another pilot in a private aircraft who inadvertently taxiied across runway hold markings without clearance from the tower. Fortunately, there were no takeoffs or landings in progress, which would have created an increased safety hazard. This was a great learning opportunity for the cadets about the importance of maintaining situational awareness, having important airport information available during ground operations (such as a taxi diagram), understanding airport signs and makrings, and requesting assistance from ATC when lost or confused. This incident also underscores the importance of maintaining CAP “sterile cockpit” procedures, and the responsibility of each crew member and passenger to be aware of and speak up about factors that may affect flight safety.

Even though the Baltimore area was in the midst of a heat wave, and temperatures reached 95°F by end of the flights, everyone was well hydrated and took precautions to prevent heat illness. The weather was unable to dampen the spirits and excitement of all involved, although it may have played a part in the dampening of their uniforms.

Civil Air Patrol, the official auxiliary of the U.S. Air Force, is a nonprofit organization with more than 61,000 members nationwide. CAP, in its Air Force auxiliary role, performs 90 percent of continental U.S. inland search and rescue missions as tasked by the Air Force Rescue Coordination Center and was credited by the AFRCC with saving 113 lives in fiscal year 2010.

Its volunteers 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 the more than 26,000 young people currently participating in CAP cadet programs. CAP has been performing missions for America for 69 years. It is the largest sponsor annually of Wreaths Across America, an initiative to remember, honor and teach about the sacrifices of U.S. military veterans. For more information on the Civil Air Patrol, visit or


There are more than 1,500 members of CAP in Maryland. Last fiscal year wing members flew 42 search and rescue missions and were credited with 31 finds. For more information about the CAP, visit


Last Updated on Tuesday, 01 April 2014 01:58
Copyright © 2018 Fort McHenry Civil Air Patrol!. All Rights Reserved.
Joomla! is Free Software released under the GNU/GPL License.