Brock new Civil Air Patrol commander

Published 10:11 am Thursday, July 25, 2019

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By Lt. Deborah Leighton

Civil Air Patrol

The Civil Air Patrol Sugar Valley Composite Squadron held its second change of command ceremony at the July 9 meeting.

Major Neil Brock accepted the position as squadron commander.

Lt. Col. Matthew Phillips, Group 4 commander, presided.  Lt. Col. Stephen Leighton, deputy commander of seniors representing outgoing Commander Major Tom Conroy, passed the Squadron Guidon  – a symbol of command authority and responsibility for the squadron – to Phillips, and Phillips passed the NC-052 Guidon to Brock.

Phillips spoke briefly after the ceremony. Brock then addressed squadron members.

C/MSgt. Veronica Martinez served as Guidon bearer.

Conroy served as commander from July 2017 through April 2019. At the request of the NC Wing, CAP, Conroy assumed command of the Composite Squadron of the Waxhaws at the end of April.

Brock joined the Civil Air Patrol in 2001 and served with the NC-082 Squadron in Winston-Salem. Brock transferred to the Sugar Valley Composite Squadron in 2017.

He is a graduate of Davie High School, served in the U.S. Army, and studied at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University with advanced studies at the USAF Air University.

Brock’s family has lived in the County since the early 1800s, when his Revolutionary War veteran ancestor, Nathaniel Brock, moved into the region from Virginia.

Brock still resides in Davie County and is a lifelong member of Farmington United Methodist Church and a member of the Farmington Masonic Lodge. He is retired from Ingersoll-Rand after 25 years.

The Sugar Valley squadron meets every Tuesday 6:30-8:30 p.m. at Sugar Valley Airport in Mocksville.

Civil Air Patrol, CAP, the longtime all-volunteer U.S. Air Force auxiliary, is the newest member of the Air Force’s Total Force, which consists of regular Air Force, Air National Guard and Air Force Reserve, along with Air Force retired military and civilian employees. CAP, in its Total Force role, operates a fleet of 550 aircraft and performs about 85 percent 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 102 lives so far this year.

Civil Air Patrol’s 64,000 members nationwide perform homeland security, disaster relief and drug interdiction missions at the request of federal, state and local agencies. Its members play a role in aerospace education and serve as mentors to more than 26,000 young people participating in the CAP cadet program.

Civil Air Patrol received the Congressional Gold Medal in 2014 in honor of the heroic efforts of its World War II veterans. Congressionally chartered 77 years ago, the nonprofit organization also participates in Wreaths Across America, an initiative to remember, honor and teach about the sacrifices of U.S. military veterans.