Categorized | Featured, Volunteering

VFW Post 3830 adopts Civil Air Patrol Color Guard


iPhone version of slideshow here
Photography by 1Lt Ruth Statler, CAP | Special to Hawaii 24/7

By Barbara B. Cooper | Special to Hawaii 24/7

When the Civil Air Patrol’s Lyman Field Composite Squadron sent an email to VFW Post 3830 in Pahoa, to see if they might be interested in supporting the squadron’s cadet color guard with some funds to help with the purchase of new rifles, holsters and gloves (so they could compete in a statewide competition) – they never expected such heartfelt generosity.

Post Commander George Kelly and Quartermaster/Adjutant Vernon Gawith personally came to the CAP’s Squadron hangar to meet the cadets, present a check for $175.00 and accepted the offer to “adopt” the cadet color guard unit in return for their performance as a color guard, escorts, servers, etc. for any functions that they may have.

Unfortunately, because of the unexpected departure of two of the color guard cadets, there was not enough time left to train new cadets before the competition, so they did not get to compete this year. But a new color guard is being trained, and when Commander Kelly and Quartermaster Gawith stopped by the hangar again, this time with two brand new de-militarized M-1 rifles and a request for a color guard performance, the cadets were elated and honored to serve.

Little did they realize that the VFW was sponsoring a dedication ceremony for three new flag poles at the Hale Anuenue Restorative Care Center in Hilo the following Monday, and needed the color guard to post the flags on the new flag poles. The CAP hangar does not have a flag pole, so they had never performed that particular type of ceremony. However, the Cadet Commander, Second Lieutenant Samuel Kimura had “flag pole” experience from his time with the NJROTC at Waiakea High School, and pledged to have the color guard trained by Monday. The cadets started their training that evening, continued practice over the weekend, and performed the ceremony on Monday!

“We are very happy to be sponsors for the cadets of Lyman Field Composite Squadron. We had seen them before and they are very professional.” said VFW Post Commander Kelly. “They did a really great job!” said VFW Quartermaster Gawaith. “We are here to help the cadets…they should have asked us a long time ago, but now – whenever they have a need – we will try to help.”

“We greatly appreciate the generosity of the VFW Post 3830 in supporting our cadets” said Squadron Commander Captain Jeffrey Hartz. “We are so thankful that our color guard now has its own rifles” commented Deputy Commander of Cadets First Lieutenant Ruth Statler after viewing the flag pole ceremony. “VFW Post 3830 has been extremely generous. Without their generosity our color guard would not have been able to perform at the flagpole dedication and now they can perform at many other events. Our color guard is comprised of dedicated and sharp cadets; we’re very proud of them and hope that they will always reflect honorably on our squadron and on VFW Post 3830” continued Lieutenant Statler.

The Civil Air Patrol’s Lyman Field Composite Squadron Color Guard is also available to perform flag duties at other local events. The Cadet Program is for youth ages 12 to 18 years old, and meets every Wednesday from 5:00 to 8:00 p.m. at the CAP hangar, located on the left as you approach the Hilo airport. Adults (Senior Members) meet the 1st and 3rd Tuesdays of each month at 6:00 p.m. For further information on the Cadet Program, as well as the Senior Program, or for Color Guard requests, please call the hangar at 935-6927. For further information on the Civil Air Patrol see their web site at: www.gocivilairpatrol.com

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