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Dallas Cadet receives Merchant Marine Academy Appointment

posted Mar 12, 2014, 7:50 PM by Andrew Theismann


DALLAS-For Civil Air Patrol Cadet Aaron Garrett it was a day like any other day.  Wake up get dressed, grab some breakfast and head for Highland Park High school.  Still, just another day until he was called to come down to the principal’s office.  At that moment everything changed, as the principal handed him the phone.  On the other end was U.S. Congressman Pete Sessions, who was calling Aaron to tell him that he had been accepted to enter the United States Merchant Marine Academy on a four year scholarship, worth over $500,000.  Cadet Garrett who holds the rank of Cadet Technical Sergeant in CAP said “This is my dream come true and I really look forward to the coming four years.  I didn’t think I would be chosen but like they say ‘you never know until you try.’  And boy did I try.”

Lieutenant Colonel Bob Sides, the Dallas Composite Squadron commander, was one of the first persons notified by a very proud father Captain Aaron ”Al” Garrett III, who serves as a check pilot for the Dallas Composite Squadron in Group III, Texas Wing of the Civil Air Patrol.  In civilian life, Captain Garrett is an airline captain for Southwest Airlines based in Dallas.  When Lt Col Sides received the news via e-mail he could not wait to share the good news with the entire squadron. When asked about Civil Air Patrol’s involvement in Cadet Garrett’s life he mentioned that “This is just another example of the many educational opportunities open to the cadets of Civil Air Patrol, as they are encouraged to apply to any of the service academies.”  Lt Col Sides went on to say “Aaron is an outstanding cadet and I know he will make an outstanding officer.  I know his dad is very proud of his accomplishment, as is the entire squadron.”

Civil Air Patrol, the official auxiliary of the U.S. Air Force, is a nonprofit organization with more than 61,000 members nationwide, operating a fleet of 550 aircraft.  CAP, in its Air Force Auxiliary role, performs 90 percent of all continental U.S. inland search and rescue missions as tasked by the Air Force Rescue Coordination Center and was credited by the AFRCC with saving 54 lives in fiscal year 2011.  Its’ volunteers also perform Homeland Security, disaster relief, drug interdiction missions,  aerospace education and serve as mentors to nearly 27,000 young people currently participating in the CAP cadet programs.  CAP received the World Peace Prize in 2011 and has been performing missions for America for 70 years.  CAP also participated in Wreathes across America, an initiative to remember, honor and teach about the sacrifices of U. S. Military veterans. Visit or for more information or contact:                                       

                                             Bob Bruton   Capt  CAP

                                             Public Affairs Officer

                                             Group III Texas Wing

                                             Civil Air Patrol