At their regularly scheduled meeting on May 21, El Paso County Commissioners adopted an official proclamation recognizing the 2013 “Top Squadron” of the United States Air Force Academy.
This year’s winner, as selected by academy Superintendent Lt. Gen. Michael Gould, went to Cadet Squadron 22, The Raptors.
This is the third consecutive year that the Raptors have won the honor, beating out 39 other squadrons.
On hand to receive the proclamation was Col Joseph Sanders, Director of the Center for Character and Leadership Development and Lt. Col. Brandy Walton, Air Officer Commanding, CS-22. Also in attendance were members of Cadet Squadron 22: Cadet First Class William Suys, Cadet Second Class Jaime Ramey, Cadet Third Class Andrew Miller-Bissell and Cadet Fourth Class Anne Von Seggern.
Lt. Col. Walton, who has been in command of The Raptors throughout their three year run as top squadron, thanked the commissioners for their recognition and praised the time and effort the squadron has logged in the name of excellence.
“I can’t tell you how proud I am of my squadron,” said Lt. Col. Walton, “These cadets behind me epitomize the Air Force core values and have built a culture of excellence within the Air Force Academy.”
District 1 Commissioner Darryl Glenn, who presented the proclamation, spoke to the cadets on a personal level.
“It’s unbelievable what you are doing and what you’ve stepped up to do, volunteering to serve this country. I am incredibly proud of you and I want welcome you to the Air Force family.”
Commissioner Glenn, who is a 1988 academy graduate, plans to the make the top squadron proclamation an annual presentation of the board.
The proclamation, coincidentally, came on the same day the BOCC adopted a proclamation in honor of Memorial Day.
Chair of the Board Dennis Hisey spoke to that connection and thanked the cadets for their current and future service to the nation.
Commencement exercises for the newest graduating class at the United States Air Force Academy will be held on May 29 at Falcon Stadium starting 9:40 a.m. with gates open at 7 a.m.
Air Force Secretary Michael Donley will deliver the commencement address.