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Cadet 1Lt Nate Kiker Leads Advanced Team at Hawk Mountain

posted Aug 9, 2018, 8:35 AM by David Froiseth   [ updated Aug 9, 2018, 8:37 AM ]

For the fourth consecutive year, I returned to Hawk Mountain Ranger School in Pennsylvania, the longest standing search and rescue school in Civil Air Patrol.

At the end of the school each year, a prophesy is placed on the students who attend the school, invoking a calling to return to the mountain. These words spoken over me in my basic year of 2015 have held true.

I served as an Alpha Squadron TC (Team Commander) for the 2018 summer school. Alpha Squadron is the advanced squadron, comprised of about 12 to 18 cadets who hold higher Emergency Services qualifications. Many of the cadets in Alpha have Ground Team 1 or Ground Team Leader qualifications.

Most of the classes for Alpha Squadron contain advanced topics, for example high angle rescues and land navigation. This year we had the opportunity to practice helicopter patient packaging in a U.S. Army UH-60 Black Hawk. We were honored to participate in this specialized training presented for the first time. It was an exceptional experience.

Staffing Alpha squadron was one of the best times I have had at the mountain, made exceptional by the fellow staff cadets and senior members I had the pleasure to work with. As I practiced and learned search and rescue skills, I have experienced the satisfaction of sharing those skills with other cadets over the past four years at Hawk Mountain.