Text & Pictures: Alain Debras - Translation: Marc Arys  sbap 2016

This Wednesday October 26, 2016, the Royal School of non commissioned officers at Saffraanberg (ERSO - KSOO) was host to the yearly "Wings"-ceremony for the laureates of Promotion 2016 within the Belgian Air Cadets.
Headed by Lt Gen Avi Ir Re Guido VANHECKE (Chairman of the ASBL of the Cadets) 48 laureates and their families were gathered around some aviation personalities in general and from the Air Component in particular.
Gen Maj Avi Frederik VANSINA (Belgian Air Component Commander) honoured the ceremony with his presence and assisted Gen VANHECKE with the handing over of the "Wings" to each of the boys and girls (seven of them).
During his speech, Gen VANHECKE praised these young Cadets, which had to go through a thorough selection procedure, be it medical and regarding their knowledge, learning to fly, the aerodynamics, meteorology and finally master the gliders and become "solo".
They achieved their first dream - to fly - and are now eventually up to seek for a job on the civilian or military market. The great majority of the Air Force pilots went through the Belgian Air Cadets of which the training and team spirit served them as a springboard towards their aviation career.

Some prizes were also given:

- to the most deserving and complete cadet of the promotion. Prize of the Minister of Defence consisting of a flight aboard a Seaking with a winching exercise

- to the cadet with the highest academic scores - Prize of the Committee consisting of a flight aboard a Marchetti

- to an instructor-pilot as a gratitude for his achievements for the Cadets during his career

The QTeam-firm handed over a cheque to the Chairman of the association as a sponsoring to finance especially the exchange programs of Cadets (this year two Belgian Cadets went to Australia).

Followed by an emotional moment during the testimony of a mother and a father recalling an exceptional year accompanying their son/daughter throughout the training with the emotions, anguishes, satisfactions and pleasure.

At last, a young F16 pilot from Kleine Brogel gave an overview of his own experiences and particular souvenirs with the Cadets (some 10 years ago), as a student-pilot and at last as a pilot.

Through these lines, SBAP wishes to thank heartily Gen VANHECKE, Cdt PERSYN and 1 SM ROLLIN for their kind invitation and the quality of their welcome.

 Some of the 2016 laureates
General Major Frederik Vansina gives the precious wings General Guido Vanhecke President of the Royal Belgian Air Cadets
Two cadets tell their own 2016 experiences A cadet awarded by the Minister of Defence for its qualities 
will make an unforgettable Seaking flight
 Awarded by the comittee for the best results, 
she will make a Siai-Marchetti flight
This instructor was rewarded for rendered services
The firm QTeam presents a 2000 check as sponsorship A cadet mom tells her experience...
...same for this cadet father A young F-16 pilot and former cadet recounts his past decade experiences
More information's about the Royal Belgian Air Cadets
can be found on their site, just click on the patch.

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