Maj. Patricia Mitcham
Public Affairs Officer
ALABAMA -- Six Civil Air Patrol officers from Mobile are among the citizen volunteers supporting the Deep Water Oil Spill response on the Gulf Coast.
Lt. Col. Stephen R. Howard, Majs. Meddie Clark and Anthony Whiston, Capt. Thomas Lyon and 1st Lt. Carlin Sheppard deployed recently as part of mission staff in support of CAP’s oil spill response activities, while Capt. Carl Hultin provides continuing communication support for staff and aircrews. To date, 71 CAP volunteers have supported the response, contributing more than 4,200 man-hours to the mission.
CAP’s critical Gulf Coast mission has included flying VIPs over coastal waters to get a look at the integrity of oil containment barriers, transporting vital mission equipment, collecting data and flying shoreline photo reconnaissance missions.
Aircrews like the one from the Mobile area are making daily flights over 700 miles of shoreline from Louisiana to Florida and taking digital images of the oil containment barriers and adjacent land area near the shoreline. On an average day, the aircrews take from 2,400 to 3,600 digital images. The images represent critical information planners are using to help determine their response to the spill, which began April 20.
Hultin serves as a communications officer on Alabama Wing staff. Howard is the Southeast Region historian and the Mobile squadron’s historian. Clark serves as the Mobile unit’s commander, Lyon as deputy commander, Whitson as operations officer and Sheppard as communications officer.