Sugar Valley Cadet a Blue Beret

Published 10:50 am Thursday, September 8, 2016

By C/A1C Michael Herman

Special to the Enterprise

Each summer, Civil Air Patrol cadets have the opportunity to participate in over 20 National Cadet Special Activities.

One of these activities is National Blue Beret. At National Blue Beret, cadets have the opportunity to work at the Experimental Aircraft Association’s AirVenture Fly-in, held annually at Wittman Regional Airport, Oshkosh, Wisc.  From July 18-Aug. 1, C/2d Lt. Christopher Herman of the Sugar Valley Composite Squadron, NC-052, learned what it means to be a Blue Beret.

While at National Blue Beret, cadets have many responsibilities. During the first week, they train, train and train, to be ready for the Fly-in and air show. During the second week, cadets put their training into action: logging all aircraft that land on runways 9/27 and 18/36, marshalling aircraft that land on runway 9/27, and managing radio communications.Cadets handle other areas, too: using direction finding equipment to locate ELTs, controlling crowd lines at the warbirds flight line and ultralights runway, and maintaining the Blue Beret compound.

And when there is unscheduled time, there is the opportunity to explore AirVenture, one of the largest and most prestigious air shows in the world.

Cadet Herman said:  “This activity is definitely one of the best Civil Air Patrol has to offer, and I would highly recommend it to anyone.”

National Blue Beret is the only place Civil Air Patrol members can earn a beret. How does a cadet earn a blue beret? Members who earn the beret maintain the high standards of the Blue Beret creed: leadership, professionalism, service to others, completing the mission and fulfilling duties, and exhibiting the highest level of integrity.

“I learned that the Blue Beret creed is something I have to be constantly striving for,” says Cadet Herman. “To me, it is the ultimate example of the Civil Air Patrol core values; I also learned to be part of something larger than myself.”

The Sugar Valley Composite Squadron meets every Tuesday at 6:30 at Sugar Valley Airport. For more information about Civil Air Patrol or the Sugar Valley Composite Squadron call 336-409-5086 or visit

Like his brother he is writing about, Michael Herman is a cadet with the Sugar Valley Squadron.