Media and Public Affairs

Media & Public Affairs

Content Manager Mark Hyland, Major

Press Release: 77th Composite Squadron Holds Unique Promotion / Recognition Ceremony

Auburn Maine September 2, 2021 – The 77th Composite Squadron of the Maine Wing of the Civil Air Patrol is proud to announce the following promotion and recognition of significant achievement.

Cadet Master Sergeant Sean Haggerty, of Auburn, has been awarded the prestigious Brigadier General Billy Mitchell Award. This Award honors a fearless pilot whose patriotism, foresight, and tenacity lead to him being considered the "Father of the Independent Air Force".

The Mitchell Award marks completion of Phase II of the CAP Cadet Program, recognizing sustained excellence in all four areas of cadet life: Leadership, Aerospace, Fitness, and Character. In addition, Mitchell cadets must have passed comprehensive examinations on leadership and aerospace topics and have completed a week-long encampment immersing them in a challenging Core Values and STEM environment.

Once a cadet earns the Mitchell Award, he or she becomes a cadet officer, is promoted to the grade of Cadet Second Lieutenant, and is challenged to lead and serve junior-ranking cadets, while continuing to develop into a dynamic American and aerospace leader.

During the promotion ceremony, Squadron Commander, Major Mark Hyland mentioned the U.S. Air Force also recognizes and respects Mitchell Award recipients’ accomplishments. He went on to say Mitchell cadets who enlist in the Air Force enter the service at the advanced grade of E-3, Airman First Class. And noted the service also looks favorably upon Mitchell cadets when evaluating AFROTC and USAF Academy applicants.

The BG Mitchell Award is not C2LT Haggerty’s only accomplishments. Sean, a home-schooled high school Junior holds a black Belt in Karate, volunteers with Honor Flight of Maine, and has started flight training. His ambition is to become an Air Force pilot.

77th Composite Squadron Tours Pease Air Guard Facility

Members of the 77 Composite Squadron and Col Blain Cote participated in a tour of the KC-46 Pegasus and facilities belonging to the Pease Air National Guard. The members of the 77 Composite Squadron were C/CMSgt Charles Vadakin, C/CMSgt Jacob Smith, C/SSgt Tyler Thierault, C/Amn Paxton Timberlake, and Cdt Samuel Symonds, plus Lt Col Greg Curtis and Maj Jerry Lewis. Members of the NH Wing Seacoast Squadron were also with us for the tour. Additionally, our Air Force Reserve Officer, Maj Sam Canders, also showed up and his quick reaction to this tour made it possible for the Maine Wing to also attend.

After clearing the front gate via the Entry Access List, we drove to the 157th Wing Headquarters building for a short overview of the 157th and Pease ANGB. The host for the evening was Col Jeff Cole, the KC-46 Program Integration Officer at Pease. He broke up the CAP personnel into 3 groups to make it easier to experience each area.

We toured the Pease Crash Fire Department to see the new facility and what a day in the life of a fire fighter was like. We were able to handle a few pieces of their equipment and see the latest technology available to the Fire Chief, Capt Smallwood, that he has to manage mayhem as he liked to call situations they respond to.

We had an opportunity to fly the KC-46 simulator doing takeoffs and landings at Pease. The cockpit looked very much like a Boeing 767 airliner, since that is the base aircraft used to convert to the air refueling tanker. There was also a boom operator simulator so cadets could also try their skills at connecting to a C-17 Globemaster II to simulate pass jet fuel to it. You needed to wear special 3-D glasses to give the video image its 3-D qualities, otherwise it looked like a double exposure image. The instructor boomer even added some turbulence and a turn, which didn’t appear to affect at least two cadets.

Then off to the main attraction to board and tour the KC-46. The aircraft had that new aircraft smell and everything on it was still pretty shiny. Another boomer described how the director lights on the bottom of the aircraft are used to guide receiving aircraft into the proper position so he/she could extend the boom into the receptacle on the receiver. We saw the faces of the stereo cameras that are used to see the aircraft and the boom flown by the boomer. The refueling boom was in its stowed position and is very much like the boom used on the KC-10 Extender. Right below the cameras was a drogue basket used by Navy and some NATO aircraft which would be extended out of the aircraft for those aircraft refueling needs.

Everyone had a great time. There may be another shot for members of the Maine Wing to visit Pease and get the same experience in the spring. So stay tuned!

For more information on this event contact:

Lt Col Greg Curtis or Major Mark Hyland

Maine Wing – US Air Force Auxiliary / Civil Air Patrol Transports Vaccine for Operation Warp Speed

CAP aircraft unloading vaccine at the Frenchville Airport, Maine

The Civil Air Patrol in Maine delivered a special cooler of Janssen Vaccine to the Frenchville Airport in support of Maine Center for Disease Control (MECDC) and the Northern Maine Medical Center in Fort Kent. The vaccine made the trip in a CAP Cessna 172 piloted by Col James Jordan and Major Mark Hyland from Augusta to Frenchville. The vaccine has to stay cold and a 2.5 hour trip (189 miles) in the CAP plane keeps the vaccine cold and saves many hours of driving. The drive is 241 miles and more than 5 hours each direction. In previous weeks, Maine Wing delivered PPE via van to first responders in Alfred, Bath, Caribou, Rockland, Dover-Foxcroft, Farmington, Oquossoc, Paris, Presque Isle, and Lincoln. In all, Maine Wing has made over 50 ground sorties to deliver PPE and has more scheduled.

Lt Col Roger Plant, CAP’s Flight Release Officer monitored the mission, and said “At the request of the MECDC, CAP delivered the shipment of vaccine, syringes, and PPE to the Frenchville Airport Monday night for a clinic to be held on Tuesday morning”. Major Scott Higgins the CAP Incident Commander said “Civil Air Patrol charges only an hourly rate for aircraft fuel and maintenance to state and local government for missions like this”.

A nurse from the Medical Center picked up the vaccine at the airport with her sons, they enjoyed seeing the CAP airplane up close. CAP was supported by the airport manager, who stayed late to provide fuel for the CAP aircraft. Small rural airports across the state provide easy access to drop off supplies during a pandemic.

Airport manager refueling the CAP airplane.

CAP is delivering PPE and vaccine in its role as the US Air Force Auxiliary– part of the Air Force program to save lives, relieve suffering, prevent property damage and provide humanitarian assistance.

The Maine Wing has aircraft and aircrews in Augusta, Bangor, Sanford, Lewiston/Auburn, and Portland. The wing can deploy its five aircraft, and ground teams to assist in emergency response and other support to local, state, tribal and federal agencies. The wing has more than 330 members in squadrons in Sanford, Portland, Brunswick, Lewiston/Auburn, Augusta, Waterville, Bar Harbor, Machias, Bangor and Caribou.

General Carl “Tooey” Spaatz Award

The 58th Composite Squadron of Portland will host the presentation of the General Carl “Tooey” Spaatz Award to Cadet Colonel Andrew Butsch from the 58th Composite Squadron of Portland of the Maine Wing of Civil Air Patrol on Thursday April 15, 2021 at 7:00 P.M.

The invitation only ceremony will be located at the Portland Maine Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 6859.

Named after General Carl “Tooey” Spaatz, the first chief of staff of the Air Force, the award is the highest achievement a cadet is eligible to attain in the CAP cadet program.
After rigorous testing throughout the 16 achievements and four milestones, a cadet has the opportunity to demonstrate their proficiency with successful cumulative examinations in the areas of Leadership, Aerospace and Physical Fitness.

Since its inception in 1964, C/Col. Butsch is the 2311th individual to obtain this prestigious accomplishment in Civil Air Patrol and the 15th individual to obtain this in the Maine Wing.

Media interested in attending the ceremony with intent to cover should RSVP to the 58th Composite Squadron of Portland via or by April 8, 2021.

Due to the current pandemic and having to limit the number of people able to attend indoor ceremonies, we will be offering a live viewing on Zoom.

If you would attend the Zoom meeting, please email Capt. Pierce for a Zoom link at

To find out more information on the 58th Portland Composite Squadron, visit

For additional information regarding CAP, please contact CAP 1st Lt Emily Earle and CAP Capt. Jeffery Pierce, the Public Affairs representatives for the 58th Composite Squadron of Portland of the Maine Wing CAP at or

Civil Air Patrol’s Maine Wing Assists in COVID-19 PPE Distribution

AUGUSTA, Maine (Jan. 15, 2021) – Civil Air Patrol’s Maine Wing delivered another round of COVID-19 personal protective equipment (PPE) this week to religious centers in Portland, Mexico, Oquossoc, Augusta, Waterville, Skowhegan and Bangor.

Wing members had previously delivered PPE to first responders in Alfred, Brownfield, Gilead, Norway, Otisfield, Denmark, Paris, West Paris, Fryeburg, Kezar Falls, Oxford, Sumner, Saco, Rumford, Mexico, Brunswick, Woodstock and Lincoln.

In all, the Maine Wing has carried out 11 sorties delivering PPE, with more scheduled for next week.

Capt. Scott Higgins, the wing’s incident commander for the mission, said the deliveries have been made at the request of the Maine Emergency Management Agency.

The wing is also assisting the Penobscot County Emergency Management Agency by providing emergency operations center staff to assist with logistics and resource requests.

Civil Air Patrol is delivering PPE in numerous states in its role as the U.S. Air Force auxiliary. CAP is aligned with First Air Force to rapidly respond to nonmilitary threats domestically when tasked in a Defense Support of Civil Authorities capacity to save lives, relieve suffering, prevent property damage, and provide humanitarian assistance.

The Maine Wing has aircraft and aircrews in Augusta, Bangor, Sanford, Lewiston/Auburn and Portland. The wing can deploy its five aircraft and ground teams to assist in emergency response and other support to local, state, tribal and federal agencies. The wing has more than 330 members in squadrons in Sanford, Portland, Brunswick, Lewiston/Auburn, Augusta, Waterville, Bar Harbor, Machias, Bangor and Caribou.

Civil Air Patrol is the longtime auxiliary of the U.S. Air Force and as such is a valued member of its Total

Force. In its auxiliary role, CAP operates a fleet of 560 single-engine aircraft and 1,994 small Unmanned Aircraft Systems (sUAS). It performs about 90% 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 82 lives annually. CAP’s 56,000 members also perform homeland security, disaster relief and drug interdiction missions at the request of federal, state and local agencies. Operating as a nonprofit organization, CAP also plays a leading role in STEM/aerospace education, and its members serve as mentors to nearly 21,000 young people participating in CAP’s Cadet Programs.

Visit www.CAP.News or for more information.

CAP Contact Info
Maj. Mark Hyland
Public Affairs Officer Maine Wing


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