Civil Air Patrol
Orange County North Carolina Composite Squadron

What We've Been Doing Lately (see below)

For Upcoming Events click.
Orange County Composite Squadron Members Attend NCWG Conference-- February 9-11, 2018
Cadets, seniors, and guests from across NCWG traveled to Wilmington, NC for the Wing Conference held on Feb 9-11. Members of the Orange County Composite Squadron attended several seminars taught by fellow CAP seniors and cadets, expanding their knowledge of the program and specific topics within CAP. The seminars were followed by a formal banquet and awards ceremony. A guest entertainer, Steve Brogan, visited that night to perform his ventriloquist act and the night was wrapped up with a cadet ball. The cadets had a memorable time and look forward to next years conference. Many thanks for all the hard work our NCWG members did in planning this conference!
Orange County Composite Squadron Members Attend Fall Ranger Training Weekend-- December 1-3, 2017
Cadets and Seniors of the Orange County Composite Squadron attended the Fall RTW 2017. This was the largest RTW with more than 250 people. NC Wing hosted the event at Morrow Mountain State park, the object of the weekend was to train and operate as Search and Rescue personnel in the cold, wet environment (it rained after all!) and to work on individual Ranger skill sets and qualifications. The weekend proved to be a challenging and rewarding experience for all; the practical knowledge learned will be benefitting to our squadron's training program in the months to come. Thank you NCWG! Click here to read a full article written by Maj. Sherry Haskell (Public Affairs Officer of RTW).
Orange County Composite Squadron Members Attend 75th Anniversary of the Cadet Program Dining Out Event-- October 28, 2017
The 75th anniversary of the cadet program was celebrated by members of CAP from all over the NC Wing. The dining out event took place at the North Carolina Aviation Museum and Hall of Fame in Asheboro, NC. Past and present members, young and old, were there to commemorate the occasion. There were several guest speakers, a catered dinner, and music/dancing after the evening was wrapped up. The cadets enjoyed themselves and thank their Wing for providing a wonderful evening. Happy 75th!
Orange County Composite Squadron Members Help Out During Hurricane Irma-- September 11-12, 2017

On September the 11 and 12,  Capt. Long, C/CMSgt Mize and C/A1C Carreiro went to the NC EOC (Emergency Operating Center) to help with tasks around the facility for the hurricanes that were hitting the coast . Most of the time the main task was to sign people in and out of the facility. The cadets were very well fed and enjoyed helping. The cadets also saw NC Governor Roy Cooper and met a few other very important individuals.

Orange County Composite Squadron Holds Change of Command Ceremony-- August 3, 2017
The Orange County Composite Squadron conducted a change of command ceremony on August 3, 2017. After over a half year term of service as cadet commander, Lt. D. Ham, transferred command to Lt. A. Ham. Many thanks to Lt. D. Ham for his dedication and service to the squadron! He has done great things in and out of the squadron and we wish him well as he transitions out of this position. We look forward to many great things in this next term with our new cadet commander, Lt. A. Ham.
Orange County Composite Squadron Cadets Tour RDU National Guard Air Base-- July 6, 2017

The cadets and seniors of OCCS arrived at the National Guard Base at 13:00 hours (1pm) on Thursday the 6th of July. They were greeted by their tour guide who first took them to the flight deck and showed the squadron some of the many apaches they have stationed on base. After touring an apache aircraft, OCCS had the chance to fly in a simulator--quite an experience for all of the cadets. The squadron was directed to the briefing room where they watched videos on the evolution of the Army attack helicopter and soon thereafter, cadets had the chance to see and try on gear worn by the pilots. This amazing tour was summed up with a quick Q&A with the tour guide. The squadron proceeded to have dinner provided by Capt. Long to end their day and head back home for the squadron meeting. Many, many thanks to the folks that made this trip possible and to our wonderful guide!

Orange County Composite Squadron Tours Washington D.C.-- March 22-26, 2017
Members of the Orange County Composite Squadron toured Washington, D.C. on March 22-26, 2017.  The historical tour included visits to the U.S. Capitol Building, Library of Congress, U.S. Supreme Court building, spending a day at the Smithsonian Institution’s National Air and Space Museum Udvar-Hazy Center, and visiting the Quantico Marine Corps Museum on the way home. Highlights of the trip were touring Arlington National Cemetery where the cadets saw the Changing of the Guard at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier as well as President John F. Kennedy’s grave; the cadets especially enjoyed a day at the White house, touring the different wings, taking lots of pictures and eventually eating lunch and bowling in the Truman Bowling alley! Many, many thanks to those who made this amazing trip possible! Click here to read a full article on our trip, written by our very own Public Affairs Officer Lt. Mize!

Lt. Col. Carreiro Visits the Orange County Composite Squadron to Talk About Careers in the Marines-- February 9, 2017 
Lt. Col. Carreiro of the Unites States Marines visited the Orange County Composite Squadron on February the 9th at a weekly meeting. The Lt. Col. spent time talking to the cadets about what led him to join the Marines, his career in the Marines, what other career options were available after Marines, and his continuous service to his country now as an airline pilot. With props and slides, the cadets greatly enjoyed the presentation by a veteran and CAP parent. After the presentation, Lt. Col. Carreiro was presented the certificate of appreciation, by our Squadron Commander, Capt. Watkins, for sharing his experiences with us.
Members of Orange County Composite Squadron Attend the NC Wing Conference-- February 3-5, 2017
The North Carolina Wing of Civil Air Patrol holds an annual conference for seniors and cadets education, training, and enjoyment. This year the conference was held on January 3-5 at the JB Duke Hotel in Durham, North Carolina. The NC Wing provided a wonderful conference schedule, rock climbing, a banquet, and to top it all off, a cadet ball with dancing and a live DJ. Cadets and Seniors from the Orange County Composite Squadron attended and had a wonderful time. We look forward to going again next year. Great job NC Wing! Click here to read the article written by the conference public affairs staff, Capt. Albert and Lt. Bentley.
Orange County Composite Squadron Holds Change of Command Ceremony-- December 1, 2016
The Orange County Composite Squadron conducted a change of command ceremony on December 1, 2016. After nearly a year of service as cadet commander, Lt. Schwartz, transferred command to Lt. Ham. Many thanks to Lt. Schwartz for his dedication and service to the squadron! We look forward to great things from our new cadet commander, Lt. Ham.
Orange County Composite Squadron Members Attend Ranger Training Weekend-- October 28-30, 2016
Members of the Orange County Composite Squadron (cadets and seniors) joined over 150 other CAP members at the 7th annual fall RTW. Hosted by the NC Wing at Morrow Mountain State Park, the object of the weekend was to train and operate as Search and Rescue personnel in the cold, winter environment and to work on individual Ranger skill sets and qualifications. The weekend proved to be a challenging and rewarding experience for all; the practical knowledge learned will be benefitting to our squadron's training program in the months to come. Click here to read a full article about the weekend, written by Maj. Sherry Haskell (Public Affairs Officer of RTW). Click here to see the video.
Orange County Composite Squadron Cadet Earns Billy Mitchell Award!-- August 4, 2016
Orange County Composite Squadron congratulates Cadet Balog on her outstanding achievement and promotion to 2nd Lieutenant. The Billy Mitchell Award is a milestone in the cadet program and takes years of service to achieve. The award was presented by the NC Wing Commander, Col. Bailey. We are extremely proud of our new Lt. and look forward to many more successes in the CAP program!
Members of Orange County Composite Squadron Graduate NCWG Summer Encampment-- June 18-25, 2016
Several members of the Orange County Composite Squadron attended the NCWG Summer Encampment 2016 at Stanley County Air National Guard Base. Encampment is an outstanding CAP experience for cadets and seniors of all ranks and ages; with lots of training opportunities, encampment also fulfills one of the requirements for the Billy Mitchell Award. Often the hardest thing a cadet has ever done, encampment will test cadets physically and mentally, pushing them to new heights in the CAP program. To see the Encampment Facebook page and access pictures, videos, and more, click here. To see a full article about this year's encampment written by Encampment's PAO, Lt. Col. Lisa Armour, click here.
Orange County Composite Squadron Earns the Unit Citation Award!-- May 12, 2016
On Thursday the 12th of May, the North Carolina Wing Commander, Col. Crawford, visited the Orange County Composite Squadron to present them with the Unit Citation Award. A squadron is awarded the unit citation award based off of the following description: "Unit Citation Award: awarded for exceptionally meritorious service or exceptionally outstanding achievement which clearly sets the unit above and apart from similar units. Members are awarded the Unit Citation ribbon if they were members of the unit during the time period for which the citation is awarded." We congratulate our cadets and seniors on their outstanding achievement and look forward to seeing this award in our future yet again!
Orange County Composite Squadron Cadet Earns Billy Mitchell Award!-- April 7, 2016
Orange County Composite Squadron congratulates Cadet Ham on her outstanding achievement and promotion to 2nd Lieutenant. The Billy Mitchell Award is a milestone in the cadet program and takes years of service to achieve. The award was presented by Squadron Commander, Captain Watkins. We are extremely proud of our new Lt. and look forward to many more successes in the CAP program!
Orange County Composite Squadron Holds Change of Command Ceremony-- March 17, 2016
The Orange County Composite Squadron conducted a change of command ceremony on March 17, 2016. After 2 years of service as cadet commander, Captain Colquhoun, transferred command to Lt. Schwartz. Many thanks to Captain Colquhoun for his dedication and service to the squadron, he will be missed by all!
Orange County Composite Squadron Members Attend Ranger Training Weekend-- February 19-21, 2016
Members of the Orange County Composite Squadron (cadets and seniors) joined over 190 other CAP members at the 2nd annual winter RTW. Hosted by the NC Wing at Morrow Mountain State Park, the object of the weekend was to train and operate as Search and Rescue personnel in the cold, winter environment and to work on individual Ranger skill sets and qualifications. Expecting harsh cold, cadets were surprised with warmer weather and sunshine. The weekend proved to be a challenging and rewarding experience for all; the practical knowledge learned will be benefitting to our squadron's training program in the months to come. Click here to read a full article about the weekend, written by Maj. Sherry Haskell (Public Affairs Officer of RTW).

Orange County Composite Squadron Cadet Earns Billy Mitchell Award!-- November 5, 2015

Orange County Composite Squadron congratulates Cadet Ham on his outstanding achievement and promotion to 2nd Lieutenant. The Billy Mitchell Award is a milestone in the cadet program and takes years of service to achieve. The award was presented by Major Richardson of the Air Force ROTC. We are extremely proud of our new Lt. and look forward to many more successes in the CAP program!

Orange County Composite Squadron Members Attend Ranger Training Weekend-- October 30-November 1, 2015

Members of the Orange County Composite Squadron (cadets and seniors) joined 230 other CAP members at the 6th annual RTW. Hosted by the NC Wing at Morrow Mountain State Park, the object of the weekend was to train and operate as Search and Rescue personnel in the cold, fall environment and to work on individual Ranger skill sets and qualifications. The weekend proved to be a challenging and rewarding experience for all; the practical knowledge learned will be benefitting to our squadron's training program in the months to come. Click here to read a full article about the weekend, written by our very own squadron Public Affairs Officer!

Orange County Squadron Tours Washington, D.C.; Meet North Carolina Senators-- June 17-20, 2015
Members of the Orange County Composite Squadron toured Washington, D.C. on June 17-20, 2015.  The historical tour included visits to the Library of Congress, the U.S. Supreme Court building, walking the National Mall and visiting the Washington Monument, the Lincoln Memorial, the Vietnam Memorial, the World War II Memorial and seeing the White House.  The cadets especially enjoyed spending a day at the Smithsonian Institution’s National Air and Space Museum Udvar-Hazy Center and attending the Evening Parade at the Marine Barracks in Washington, D.C.  During the visit, the squadron met with N.C. Senators Richard Burr and Thom Tillis on the steps of the U.S. Capitol.  The squadron also toured Arlington National Cemetery where they saw the Changing of the Guard at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, President John F. Kennedy’s grave, Arlington House, the Arlington Memorial Amphitheater, and the United States Marine Corps (Iwo Jima) War Memorial. Click Here to read the full news release published on the NC Wing Website!
Army BlackHawk Pilot Visits Orange County Composite Squadron-- June 11, 2015
U.S. Army blackhawk helicopter pilot, Lt Kator, visited the squadron on Thursday, June 11th.  Lt Kator told the cadets about his high school days as a Civil Air Patrol cadet and how that influenced his decision to become a military aviator.  Lt. Kator told the cadets about exciting events at flight school, SERE (Survival, Evasion, Resistance & Escape) training, and the challenges and fun of becoming a military pilot.  He also showed the cadets his flight suit, helmet and other equipment.  After the riveting presentation, the Squadron Commander, Lt Watkins, presented Lt Kator with a Certificate of Appreciation and thanked him for sharing his flying experiences with our squadron.
Squadron Members Attend Winter Ranger Training School-- February 6-8, 2015
Both Cadets and Senior Members from Orange County Composite Squadron attended the Winter Ranger Training Weekend hosted by NC Wing at Morrow Mountain State Park. The object of the weekend was to train and operate as Search and Rescue personnel in a winter environment, and to work on their individual Ranger skill sets and qualifications. The weekend proved to be a challenging and rewarding experience for all; the practical knowledge learned will be benefitting our squadron's training program in the months to come.  Click here for a humorous and insightful look at the Ranger Training Weekend written by our very own Public Affairs Officer!  
Orange County Composite Squadron Holds Change of Command Ceremony-- February 5, 2015
The Orange County Composite Squadron conducted a Change-in-Command ceremony on February 5, 2015.  Current squadron Commander, Capt. Wehr, stepped down from his four year position of leading the squadron and Lt. Watkins stepped up to the plate to accept his place as the new squadron Commander. Click here to read the full news release published on the NC Wing website!
Orange County CAP Members Participate in Statewide Search and Rescue Exercise-- January 17, 2015
The Orange County Composite Squadron participated in the Civil Air Patrol’s SAREX Mission on January 17, 2015.  Cadets from the squadron dispatched as part of Ground Team 9 with cadets from the Raleigh-Wake squadron.  
 
Under Ground Team Leader Maj Bohler, a former Airborne paratrooper, Ground Team 9 was tasked with locating a missing alzheimer’s patient in Orange County, NC.  The ground team traveled to the Carillon Assisted Living facility... Click Here to read the complete article published by our Squadron Public Affair Officer!
Orange County Composite Squadron Visits NC Army Air National Guard 130th Aviation Regiment-- December 29, 2014
Civil Air Patrol’s Orange County Composite Squadron visited the 130th Aviation Regiment (Attack Recon Battalion) of the NC Army National Guard on December 29, 2014.  The cadets and senior members learned about the regiment’s 19 Apache and 4 Lakota helicopters and the servicemen and women who fly and maintain them. Click here to read the full news release published on the NC Wing website!
Orange County Composite Squadron Cadet Earns Billy Mitchell Award!--December 4, 2014
Orange County Composite Squadron congratulates Cadet Ham on his outstanding achievement and promotion to 2nd Lieutenant. The Billy Mitchell Award is a milestone in the cadet program and takes years of service to achieve. The promotion ceremony was at the end of the first meeting in December, and the uniform of the day was Blues. The award was presented by Col Javorski of the US Air Force and Orange County EMS Director Jim Groves. Also promoted at this time were Cadets Colquhoun and Albert to the ranks of 1st Lieutenant and Airman respectively. Once again, congratulations to all of our hardworking cadets! 
Orange County Composite Squadron Wins Quality Cadet Unit Award--October 10, 2014
Each year CAP National Head Quarters awards squadrons across the nation for an outstanding Cadet Program. This year our Squadron was one of only twelve squadrons in North Carolina to receive this honor. In order to earn this recognition, Squadrons must have an active and vibrant cadet program which fulfills the challenging criteria set forward by CAP NHQ. For more information about the Quality Cadet Unit Award click here.
OCCS Members Awarded for Outstanding Service-- September 2, 2014
Mr. and Mrs. Ernandes, who have recently resigned from CAP, were awarded certificates of appreciation for their outstanding service to our squadron. Both had achieved the rank of 1st Lieutenant, and served as Deputy Commander for Cadets and Activities Officer respectively. They have poured countless hours into enriching our squadron and the cadet program over the years. Our whole squadron thanks them and wishes them well in their future endeavors. Semper Vigilans!  
Members of Orange County Composite Squadron Attend NCWG Encampment-- June 21, 2014
Several members of Orange County Composite Squadron are now attending NC Wing Encampment at the Stanley County Air National Guard Base. Encampment is a great CAP experience with lots of training opportunities and also fulfills one of the requirements for the Billy Mitchell Award. Often the hardest thing a cadet has ever done, encampment will test cadets physically and mentally, pushing them to new heights in the CAP program. To follow the encampment on Facebook and see pictures, videos, newsletters and more, click here  

Cyber Patriot Demonstration-- April 8, 2014
Members of Raleigh-Wake Squadron's Cyber Patriot Team presented a demonstration/presentation of the Cyber Patriot program. The Cyber Patriot program is a competition-based, cyber awareness program designed to expose high school students to the world of computer defense. An overview of the program, useful tips, and a practical demonstration of what happens to a computer system under attack were all included. Orange County Composite Squadron heartily thanks 2nd Lt Vestal, C/1Lt Soares, and C/CMSgt Vestal of Raleigh-Wake Squadron, and hopes to form a Cyber Patriot team ourselves. 
Orange County Composite Squadron Cadet Earns Billy Mitchell Award!-- March 4, 2014 
Orange County Composite Squadron congratulates Cadet Colquhoun on his outstanding achievement and promotion to 2nd Lieutenant. The Billy Mitchell Award is a milestone in the cadet program and can take years of service to achieve. The promotion ceremony was held on the first meeting in March, and the uniform of the day was Blues. Also promoted at this time were Cadets H. Ham and D. Ham to the rank of Chief Master Sergeant and Senior Master Sergeant respectively. Once again, congratulations to all of our hardworking cadets!
Orange County Composite Squadron Cadet Earns Billy Mitchell Award!-- February 4, 2014
Congratulations to Cadet Ernandes for achieving the Billy Mitchell Award and promoting to the rank of 2nd Lieutenant! The award ceremony was held on the first meeting in February; the uniform of the day was Blues. Cadet A. Ham was also promoted during the ceremony to the rank of Staff Sergeant, and was presented with the Wright Brothers Award. Both cadets worked very hard to achieve these milestone awards and deserve our recognition. Great work!   
Orange County Composite Squadron Hosts Point of Distribution (POD) Training--October 19, 2013

This Saturday training course introduced students to the concept of POD and trained them on how to setup, operate, and maintain a successful Point of Distribution. The course started with indoor instruction in the morning, and then after lunch the trainees went outside to setup a fully functioning POD. 

 

POD's are frequently established after major disasters such as hurricanes and tornadoes. Qualified CAP members who know how to operate POD's will often be called in to disaster areas to supply victims with much-needed commodities such as: food, water, ice, and tarps. Kudos to everyone who took this course and became POD-qualified.

 

To read more about this training event click here to access the article on the NCWG website

Orange County Composite Squadron Wins Quality Cadet Unit Award--September 30, 2013
Each year CAP National Head Quarters awards squadrons across the nation for an outstanding Cadet Program. This year our Squadron was one of only eight squadrons in North Carolina to receive this honor. In order to earn this recognition, Squadrons must have an active and vibrant cadet program which fulfills the challenging criteria set forward by CAP NHQ. For more information about the Quality Cadet Unit Award click here.
Cadets Get Article Published in The News of Orange County
C/1st Lt Vinar and C/A1C Ham jointly authored an article about our squadron trip to the Wright Brothers Memorial and got it published in The News of Orange County newspaper. Great job cadets!
Squadron Picnic-August 3, 2013
On Saturday, August 3 we held our annual squadron picnic out at Lake Orange. Cadets and Senior members alike had a chance to relax and recreate with swimming and water sports. Afterwards, we had a wonderful meal of hot-of-the-grill hamburgers and hotdogs, salad, an assortment of side dishes, and of course desserts. Overall, this was a great afternoon and everyone had a wonderful time!
Trip to Kill Devil Hills, NC--June 11-12, 2013

The Orange County Composite Squadron took an overnight trip to the Outer Banks and visited several noteworthy locations. Our first stop was the Wright Brothers' National Museum, where we were able to tour the museum, see a complete replica of the Wright Flyer, and stand on the historic grounds where the first flight took place (pictured at the left). 

 

That night the squadron drove to nearby Roanoke Island to see the Tony award-winning show, The Lost Colony. Before the show, we were treated to a backstage tour in which we learned the history of the production and all the work that goes into an outdoor symphonic drama.

 

The next day we awoke bright and early, and headed back to the Wright Brothers Memorial for the flag-raising. Conditions were favorable, and our Color Guard did an excellent job at hoisting Old Glory.

Our last stop was the famous Cape Hatteras lighthouse; everyone was able to climb the dizzying 268 steps to the observation deck and see the breathtaking view of the island.

 

Thank you to everyone who made this trip possible!

Trip to Morehead Planetarium and Science Center--April 5, 2013 

On April 5, 2013, members of the Orange County Composite Squadron (MER-NC- 150) took a trip to the Morehead Planetarium on the University of North Carolina Campus. We saw the Planetarium show "The WIldest Weather in the Solar System" under the dome. Afterwards we got to attend the LIVE Science demonstration, "Magnificent Matter".


Our Public Affairs staff wrote an excellent article covering the trip, and it ended up getting published in Carolina Wingspan, the statewide CAP newsletter! Click here to view the newsletter.

Duke Basketball Color Guard--December 29, 2012
At Cameron Stadium, our Color Guard team presented the Colors for the national anthem. Afterwards, the cadets got to watch the exciting Duke vs. Santa Clara basketball game. Click here to view the video.
Durham Bulls Opening Night Color Guard--April 5, 2012
The Orange County Composite Squadron Color Guard team presented the Colors for the national anthem on opening night at the Durham Bulls.
Training with the Local K-9 Team--March, 20 2012
Orange County Composite Squadron had the privilege of performing a training exercise with the local police K-9 team. After a mission debriefing, the cadets went out on a simulated ground search for a downed aircraft. With the help of the search dog and his master, the team located the missing pilot in the woods. The team members then practiced their first aid skills and performed a medical extraction.

Color Guard - 9/11 Tenth Anniversary: Orange County First Responders

The Orange County Composite Squadron Color Guard team presented the Colors during the September, 11 ceremony commemorating the tenth anniversary of 9/11. Click here to view the video.