Civil Air Patrol

West Salem Civil Air Patrol cadet earns Air Force Academy appointment

Photo by Lt. Col. Harold Moe - Lieutenant Colonel Rose Hunt, Wisconsin Wing Vice-Commander, and Colonel Clarence Peters, Wisconsin Wing Commander, present Cadet Lieutenant Colonel Mike Ebert with his last cadet promotion to the rank of Cadet Colonel.

Photo by Lt. Col. Harold Moe – Lieutenant Colonel Rose Hunt, Wisconsin Wing Vice-Commander, and Colonel Clarence Peters, Wisconsin Wing Commander, present Cadet Lieutenant Colonel Mike Ebert with his last cadet promotion to the rank of Cadet Colonel.

West Salem, Wis. – Some high school seniors might be content to let the end of their senior year play out, but not Cadet Colonel Michael Ebert.  While his friends prepare for graduation and wonder what they’ll do this summer, Ebert has been reaching goals that he set for himself long ago.

 

In late April, Ebert achieved the General Carl A. Spaatz Award, Civil Air Patrol’s most prestigious cadet award.  Ebert’s award, #1884, marked the first time a cadet from the La Crosse Composite Squadron ever reached this level.  On average only 1 in 200 CAP cadets ever earn the Spaatz Award. 

 

“It’s a pretty elite club, Mike can be very proud of himself,” said Major Todd Mandel, a prior Spaatz recipient himself.  The award is named for General Carl Spaatz, the first Chief of Staff of the United States Air Force.

 

Only a few weeks later Cadet Ebert accepted an appointment to the Merchant Marine Academy, marking the second major goal he obtained in as many months.  Earning a slot at one of the nation’s service academies had long been a goal for Ebert.  A service academy appointment was part of his strategy to reach his ultimate goal; flying for the United State Air Force.

 

Then, just this week, Ebert received a call and was offered an appointment to the United States Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs.  Being offered two service academy appointments presented Ebert with a tough decision.  However, after consulting with family and friends he ultimately accepted the USAFA appointment. 

 

According to Ebert, “Attending the Air Force Academy is the next stepping stone towards my dream, which began in 4th grade, of being an Air Force officer and pilot.”  Ebert reports in June to begin his Air Force career.

 

Next week Ebert will graduate from West Salem High School.  He will enjoy his accomplishments, but he can’t rest long, for new goals await him.

 

The La Crosse Composite Squadron meets at 9:00 a.m. on Saturday mornings at the CAP Center located at 2906 Fanta Reed Road on the east side of the La Crosse Municipal Airport. Prospective cadets, ages 12-18, and their parents are always welcome. Adults seeking mentoring opportunities or opportunities to serve are invited as well. For more information visit http://lacrossecap.org or call Major Todd Mandel at 608-633-1496 or email at todd.mandel@gmail.com.

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