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February 18, 2024, Article by CAF Col Charles Scott Williams It’s 0400 as I begin writing my monthly Unit newsletter article and I’m in Dallas attending B-29 Ground School. I will officially arise at 0600 but my body chose to wake up a little after 0300 so instead of lying awake in bed solving all the worlds problems, I have decided to get up do something productive. The photograph is of my three-and-a-half-year-old grandson Brysen and I put his picture here because I want all of my good friends in the Gulf Coast Wing to realize the impact you have on young people. Why? Because if you want the legacy of what we do in the CAF to carry on long after all of us are gone, it’s time to pass along the CAF’s mantra, Educate, Inspire, and Honor, to future generations.

I decided to start working on my grandson early to plant the seed of aerospace in him. If he decides to go down the aerospace road, good on him. If he decides to do something else, I’m just as happy because he needs to do what he wants to do in the future. BUT he’s been exposed to aviation/aerospace, and as soon as I get the chance, I will bring him out to see our Wing aircraft for yet another dose of that magic elixir called aviation. I want Brysen to hear a sound that is often drown out by turbine engines in this modern day and time, that sound being of the radial engines of our Beech 18 and SNJ. Will it bring a smile to his face or turn his head when those circular cylinders sound out their hypnotic notes that catch and turn common folk into aviation addicts? Well, if it’s his bag, then I hope it does. I try to get our Cadets hooked on a path in life that offers an honest and economically lucrative living, no, not in the packaging and canning industry, but in aerospace. Aerospace is what my life has been about, it’s what I know, so I am passing the torch along to as many Cadets that I can that show up at the Gulf Coast Wing doorstep. Current activities waiting to be completed are an Air Traffic Control tour at the Houston Intercontinental Airport which includes an airport operations tour where the Cadets get to see behind the curtain on how the airport itself is operated. In March, I will be headed to Dallas with several Cadets for a day of aircraft maintenance on the B-29 known as FIFI. So, three roads in life to choose from in two months’ time; Air Traffic Control, Airport Management, and Aircraft Maintenance. Even better news is that I have shared these activities with the Houston Wing and a few of their Cadets will be participating as well. In the works, thanks to CAF Col Nathan Harnagel, is a tour of his place of employment in the Space Industry. From sea level to the hard vacuum of space, our Cadets will be shown pathways to the sky and stars!

For more information about the Gulf Coast Wing Cadet program you can go to https://gulfcoastwing.org. *Article by Charles Scott Williams, CAF Gulf Coast Wing *

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