By: 1st Lt Bryan Weil, PAO
November 7, 2013 Raleigh, NC – The Raleigh Wake Composite Squadron (MER-NC-048) held its end of year promotion and professional development recognition ceremony tonight. Cap. Rich Laviano, Squadron Commander officiated the ceremony; Col. Larry Ragland, Middle East Region Commander and Lt. Col. Dion Viventi, Group 3 Commander, were also in attendance to observe the ceremony.
Receiving their Yeager award, which is awarded for completion of aerospace education, was Cap. David Gilchrist, 1Lt. Bryan Weil, 1Lt. Matthew Wingfield,. Receiving the Davis award which is given for completion of level two requirements, was Cap. David Gilchrist and 1Lt. Bryan Weil. Additionally, Maj. Peter Bohler (Not present) was the recipient of the Wilson award in recognition of completion of level 5 requirements.
1st Lt. Robert Sunman (not present) was promoted to Captain; Senior Members Ed Addison, Joseph Leveille and Roy Vestal were promoted to Second Lieutenant; Lieutenant’s Bryan Weil, Travae Willis, Terri Richards and Matthew Wingfield were all promoted to First Lieutenant.
Major Tim Tessen receives his new Rank from Cap. Laviano and Col. Ragland
Major Timothy Tessin was promoted to Lt. Col. Col. Ragland, the Middle East Region Commander stated upon promoting Lt. Col Tessin, “just as Lt. Col Tessin’s rank was temporary for one year until he proved to the commander that he met the obligations of that rank, so was his (Col. Ragland) promotion to Colonel, until he fulfilled his responsibilities as the Middle East Region Commander. Ragland told the junior officers present that while the ranks of Major and below were permanent ranks, each officer carries the responsibility that that rank has.” In fact, he further stated, “promotions should never be seen as a reward, but a challenge to work even harder.”
Col Ragland addresses the squadron with Cap. Laviano.
Raleigh Wake has a rich history of having a large group of pilots to fly the many missions needed by the Civil Air Patrol in support of their mission to aid the United States Air Force in several missions. During the ceremony, nine pilots were recognized as achieving their Form 5 status. The form 5 status documents each pilot’s proficiency, and is required for each CAP Pilot to fly a CAP plane. The pilots recognized for achieving this milestone were: Lieutenants Ed Addison, Ben Carson, Paul Franzon, Jim Loebach, Joey Leveille , Andy Vlack, Captains Jeremy Browner, Steve Merrit, and David Gilchrist. Franzon and Merrit also were recognized as Form 5 Glider Pilots. Addison, Gilchrist and Vlack additionally were received their Transport Mission Pilot status. 2nd Lt. Addison additionally was recognized as an instructor pilot, and lastly 1st Lt. Vlack was awarded his Mission Pilot credentials.
Members of Raleigh Wake Composite Squadron present for ceremony with Lt. Col Dion Viventi and Col. Larry Ragland
While the above lists can be tedious to read, it is important to remember that all the members listed above for various achievements, completed their individual accomplishments as volunteers. Significant time and personal resources were expended to achieve each of those accomplishments, and that they were done without pay truly speaks to the dedication each of the men and women listed above have to the Civil Air Patrol and its mission to support the United States Air Force.