Cadet Airman Zach Rawlings struggles with one of the B-17 propellers in preparation for engine start as Cadet Staff Sgt. Bryce Whisler (left) and Cadet Senior Josiah Bridges wait to assist. All are members of the Scott Composite Squadron.
Cadet Airman Zach Rawlings helps a B-17G crewmember turn one of the plane’s four propellers to prepare it for takeoff.
Cadet Airmen Zach Rawlings (center) and Alex Sponeman, both from the Scott Composite Squadron, help a ground team member guide the tail section of the B-17 as it’s maneuvered into display position.
(From left) Cadet Airman Kevin Lane, Cadet Senior Airman Matt Triefenbach and Cadet Airman Felipe Sanchez, all members of the Scott Composite Squadron, check out the interior of a B-17G.
Capt. Dave Philip, the Civic Memorial Senior Squadron’s communications officer, emerges from the tail door of a B-17G as Cadet Airman Felipe Sandez stands by to assist.
Cadet 1st Lt. John Gulick (left) of the Scott Composite Squadron and Cadet 2nd Lt. Noah Mizell of the 286th Composite Squadron check on the fellow cadets during the air show.
(From left) Cadet Chief Master Sgt. Andrew Hall and Cadet Airmen Alex Sponeman and Kevin Lane, all members of the Scott Composite Squadron, take refuge from the sun.
Members of the Scott Composite and 286 Composite squadrons pose for a photo at the nose of the B-17G Flying Fortress – (from left) 2nd Lt. Jeff Rawlings, Cadet Airman Kevin Lane, Cadet Staff Sgt. Bryce Whisler, Cadet Chief Master Sgt. Andrew Hall, Cadet Senior Airman Jesse Baxter, Cadet 1st Lt. John Gulick, Cadet Airmen Felipe Sanchez and Zachary Rawlings, Cadet Senior Airman Josiah Bridges, Cadet 2nd Lt. Noah Mizell, Cadet Airman Alex Sponeman, Cadet Senior Airman Matthew Triefenbach and Maj. Carol Hertel. Hertel is the Scott squadron’s commander; Rawlings is aerospace education officer.
Photos by Capt. Greg Hoffeditz, Illinois Wing
Capt. Greg Hoffeditz
Public Affairs Officer
Scott Composite Squadron
ILLINOIS -- “Hydrate!” was the order of the day for Cadet 1st Lt. John Gulick, Scott Composite Squadron cadet commander, as he led 11 fellow cadets during the annual Fair St. Louis air show Wednesday, the Fourth of July.
In all, 20 members from three Illinois Wing Group 1 units – the Scott and 286h composite squadrons and the Civic Memorial Senior Squadron – assisted with crowd control on the St. Louis Downtown Airport flight line.
This marked the second year local Civil Air Patrol units have been called on to lend a hand for the event. Last year’s show was partially canceled because of a torrential rainstorm, but this year a bit of precipitation would have provide some welcome relief, as the CAP members endured record-breaking 105-degree temperatures and a heat index above 110 under cloudless skies as they patrolled the ramp.
The flight line, just across the Mississippi River from St. Louis, was used as the staging area for aircraft performing at the St. Louis Gateway Arch Riverfront during the holiday. This was the second year the airport has opened its ramp to special needs visitors so they could receive up-close mini aerial demonstrations and tours of some of the planes flown.
One crowd-drawing attraction was the vintage B-17G Flying Fortress, Aluminum Overcast, which the cadets and officers received a little first-hand experience with handling. Along with a tour of the the World War II-era bomber, brought to the show by the Experimental Aircraft Association of Oshkosh, Wis., the CAP members members assisted the crew in priming the massive propellers before engine start, and later in pushing the aircraft into a parking position for display.
Once the plane was opened to the public, cadets monitored its entrance and exit doors, ready to assist visitors.
Other performers included civilian acrobatic and experimental aircraft, Marine Corps AV-8B Harrier IIs, the U.S. Army Golden Knights parachute demonstration team, a Stearman biplane and a Lockheed Model 10 Electra, similar to the plane Amelia Earhart flew on her ill-fated final flight 75 years ago.