September 2021
News for Alumni & Friends
Volunteers serving America’s communities, saving lives, and shaping futures.

Inside This Issue... First save for sUAS team, Hawaii Wing search and rescue exercise, Vermont cadets get a glimpse of Air Force life, donate your wings and wheels, California member offers students STEM experience, California member offers students STEM experience, Happy Birthday U.S. Air Force, Alumni Spotlight is Vietnam War's leading ace, CFC campaign begins, Nevada Wing cadet plays taps for fallen, Final Salute and more...
It's a First! Small Unmanned Aerial Systems Team
Credited With Initial Save
CAP's small Unmanned Aerial Systems (sUAS) program has recorded its first life saved.

The sUAS team was deployed to join the search in Scotland County, North Carolina, along with two ground teams. The state Emergency Management System requested CAP assistance after a 78-year-old...

Cadets and Senior Members of the Hawaii Wing
Conduct Search and Rescue Exercise

An Interview with Hawaii Wing Squadron Cadet
This 12-year-old cadet shares his cadet experience and his plans for the future. Talk about recruiting! We couldn't help but smile...
When I read/hear about cadet stories...
It makes me excited about the future
I like cadets, but I really like hearing more about operational missions
Vermont Cadets Receive
Early Look at Life in the Air Force
Cadets in the Vermont Wing's new Bennington Composite Squadron of the Vermont Wing of the Civil Air Patrol took part in training activities on a warm July afternoon at the William H. Morse State Airport.
Donate Your Wings or Wheels
California Aerospace Education Officer and Teacher Helps Youth Pursue Careers in STEM Fields

"Their successes are my successes." Denise Whelchel
Meet Senior Member Denise Whelchel. She is the aerospace education officer of Cable Composite Squadron 25 (PCR-CA-193) in Upland, California. A middle school science teacher, she learned about Civil Air Patrol years ago from a students who is a cadet.

Although Whelchel has been a CAP member for less than a year, she has been active in CAP, participating in several aerospace programs, including the STEM Kit Program and Adopt-a-Classroom. Her squadron also completed in this summer's National High Altitude Balloon Challenge (pictured).

Whelchel holds a private pilot's certificate and is a former air traffic controller with the California Air National Guard. She is focused on helping the youth she leads embark on STEM careers. "Seeing my students and cadets excited about aerospace education is very rewarding," she says, "but even more rewarding is knowing my students are headed to the best colleges in the country to study aeronautics, engineering and science." She's recently had students graduate from some of the country's most prestigious universities. "Their successes are my successes," she says.
Saving Lives
CAP's search and rescue missions continue. This map represents the number of saves since Oct. 1.
Happy Birthday, U.S. Air Force!
Have you served/are you serving in the U. S. Air Force?
Yes, I'm a veteran.
Yes, I am actively serving.
No, but I'm proud to be a part of the Total Force supporting all our airmen.
No, but wishing our Air Force members a very happy birthday celebration!
Alumni Spotlight

Retired Air Force Col. Charles B. DeBellevue

Cadet Alumnus, Louisiana Wing
Retired Air Force Colonel and Louisiana Wing cadet alumnus Charles B. DeBellevue's passion for flight at an early age drove him to join Air Force ROTC at the University of Southwestern Louisiana, now the University of Louisiana at Lafayette. (U.S. Air Force photo by Micah Garborino)

Commissioned in 1968, the New Orleans native was assigned to the Air Force's "Triple Nickel" 555th Tactical Fighter Squadron. He was stationed at Udron Royal Thai Air Force Base, Thailand, as an F-4 Phantom weapons system officer.

In 1972 DeBellevue became the nation's leading Vietnam War ace when he shot down his fifth and sixth enemy planes. He became the Air Force's first nonpilot ace. For this feat, he shares the 1972 Mackay Trophy with two fellow aces, Capts.Richard S. “Steve” Ritchie and Jeffrey S. Feinstein.

DeBellevue accumulated 550 combat hours and was one of only five Vietnam aces. During air engagements, he said, "nothing outside thecockpit was important.” DeBellevue eventually became a command pilot, totaling more than 3,000 flying hours. His many awards include the Air Force Cross, three Silver Stars, three Legions of Merit, and six Distinguished Flying Crosses. He said the Air Force cultivated great integrity, discipline, leadership, teamwork and training -- traits he will carry with him for the rest of his life.

DeBellevue lives in Edmond, Oklahoma with his wife. Though he has retired from the Air Force, the service is still part of his life. He volunteers within the Air Force community, speaking with active duty and ROTC units about his experiences in the Air Force.
Be the Face of Change:

Support CAP through the Combined Federal Campaign
Did you know you can give to CAP through the Combined Federal Campaign (CFC)?

All federal, postal, and military personnel have access to this single electronic giving platform that supports Civil Air Patrol #24876 . A simple and easy way for retirees to participate is by using their monthly annuity and/or credit cards to contribute through the CFC.

The importance of giving is what the campaign season is all about, and this year's season is less focused on a dollar amount and more on making sure people know they have the opportunity to give back.

Show some love to our missions by giving to Civil Air Patrol #24876 through the CFC. Our designation number is 24876 . Your work empowers and inspires the generosity of the federal community, and together we can have an even greater impact. #BeTheFaceofChange
Nevada Cadet’s Tribute to Fallen U.S. Service
Members in Afghanistan Goes Viral

When Cadet Senior Airman Devin Linehan honored U.S. Marines and other servicemembers killed in Afghanistan by playing taps outside his Nevada home with an American flag at half-staff Aug. 26,he had no idea the impact it would have.

A video of his late-night tribute taken by his father, Sean Linehan — a former Marine himself — has since gone viral. Since the video first appeared on Facebook, millions all over the world have viewed it and hundreds — including Civil Air Patrol's national leaders — have responded to the youth’s simple gesture of respect.

“The response to my video was very unexpected,” said Devin Linehan, 14, a member of the Nevada Wing’s Carson City Composite Squadron.
Final Salute
CAP offers friends and family the ability to make gifts in memory or honor of someone special. Tribute/memorial gifts made through the link below are listed in each issue of Civil Air Patrol Volunteer.
Civil Air Patrol - Development
Kristina E. Jones, M.A., CFRE, Chief of Philanthropy
Molly Longmire, CFRE, Deputy Chief of Philanthropy and National Partnerships
Col. John M. Knowles, CAP, Deputy Chief of Alumni Relations
Donna Bass Maraman, Development Manager
Rebecca Stovall, Donor Database Specialist

(334) 953-9003 Direct
(833) IAM-4CAP Toll Free
Interested in talking about the legacy you want to leave?
Contact Kristina Jones, Chief of Philanthropy, at