Civil Air Patrol

Budget Cuts Not Stopping Vital Missions in Civil Air Patrol

Wisconsin – Recent budget cuts have not stopped vital missions in Civil Air Patrol.  Late Tuesday morning, Air Force Rescue Coordination Center (AFRCC) approved Wisconsin Wing to search for an electronic locator transmitter (ELT) signal which was heard by several airborne aircraft near the Wisconsin/Iowa border.

The aircrew led by Lieutenant Colonel Robert Ward with First Lieutenant John Rolfsmeyer, both from the 153rd Madison Composite Squadron, quickly picked up the signal and coordinated with a ground team led by Major Ryan Krenke, also of the Madison squadron.  Captain Jeff Gertgen and Cadet Second Lieutenant Dakota Cahill, Col Sac Composite Squadron, assisted in the ground team search.

The aircrew was able to lead the ground team right to the transmitter which was located in Galena, Illinois.  Gertgen stated “The aircrew did a phenomenal job in locating the beacon.  Due to the hills, we would have had a tough time finding it.”

Upon finding the transmitter, the team deactivated it.  What caused the ELT to sound its warning?  One of the wires in the device had been pinched when the cover was placed on it causing it to short itself and set the beacon off.

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