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NC Wing Glider Program Takes Off

NC Wing Members
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Left to Right - Capt Johnson, Capt Howard, Capt Nelson, Lt Mayo, Lt Col Winkleman, Capt Cole, Col Crawford, Lt Jones, Col Ragland. Photo by 1st Lt David Hutcheson (VA-023). (click image to view full size)
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NC Wing Members Qualify for Various Program Duties

3/25/2013––Yesterday (March23, 2013) capped a nearly 9 month effort in the initial phases of the launch of the NCWG Glider program.  A large contingent of NC wing members traveled to Danville VA to participate in an intense glider operation that at the end of the day paid off in terms of productivity.  As of now, NC is fully prepared to launch its glider program.  We have a full cadre including 2 wing tow pilots (plus Col. Ragland, Middle East Region Commander), 2 glider pilots, a glider operations coordinator (Air Boss) and a fully trained and qualified ground operations team.

Yesterday marked several milestones in the growth of the NCWG glider program. Lt Col Craig Winkelmann (MER-NC-048) and Capt John Cole (MER-NC-022) completed their training and were signed off as glider tow pilots. Capt Cole received his 4 required glider rides with CFI-G and National Vice Commander, Brig. Gen. Vazquez. Additionally 2nd Lt. Calvin Mayo (MER-NC-079) received his Form 5 in the L-23 glider with Brig. Gen. Vazquez serving as check pilot.

1st Lt Ricky Jones, MER-NC-079/CC who was NCWG's first Form 5'd glider pilot - flew his first Cadet Orientation flight in the glider with a cadet from VAWG.

Capt. Marcus Howard (MER-NC-048) also received 2 instructional flights with Brig. Gen. Vazquez in the L-23 glider.

Ground personnel who completed their training include Capt. David Nelson (MER-NC-079), Capt. Marcus Howard (MER-NC-048), Capt. Cory Johnson (MER-NC-121), Lt. Col. Craig Winkelmann (MER-NC-048), 2nd Lt. Calvin Mayo (MER-NC-079), 1st Lt. Ricky Jones (MER-NC-079) and Capt John Cole (MER-NC-022).  Additionally I qualified as Glider Operations Coordinator (aka Air Boss).

Thanks to the support from VAWG over the last 9 months as well as Gen Vazquez and the coordination efforts of Capt Shawn McComas (NC/DO) and Lt Col Craig Winkelmann, NC is now in position to jump start its glider program with a fully qualified cadre of personnel.

There will be much more information coming out about the glider program and its implementation. In the meantime please join in congratulating Lt. Col. Winkelmann, Capt. Cole, 1st Lt. Jones and 2nd Lt. Mayo on their accomplishments in completing their training in support of the glider program.