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Wesson teen promoted to Civil Air Patrol captain

A Wesson teenager active in the Civil Air Patrol recently earned recognition only three percent of the 22,000 cadets nationwide achieve.

Jadon Carr, the son of Michael and Cherron Carr of Wesson, was recently presented with the Amelia Earhart Award and promoted to captain in the Civil Air Patrol, a longtime all-volunteer auxiliary of the U.S. Air Force.

CAP operates a fleet of 560 aircraft, performs about 90 percent of continental U.S. inland search and rescue missions as tasked by the Air Force Rescue Coordination Center. CAP’s 57,000 members also perform homeland security, disaster relief and drug interdiction missions at the request of federal, state and local agencies.

The CAP cadet program uses a curriculum that focuses on leadership, aerospace, fitness and character. As cadets participate in these four elements, they advance through a series of achievements, earning honors and increased responsibilities along the way.

Carr, a 16-year-old homeschool student, joined the Madison Cadet Squadron, MS-111, three years ago and has proven his physical fitness, dedication, intellect and leadership skills during his time in the program.

His promotion took place at Colonial Heights Baptist Church in Ridgeland, the meeting place of the Madison Cadet Squadron. Many of Carr’s family and friends attended his special promotion. Rep. Becky Currie and Sen. Sally Doty participated in the ceremony.

“We are so proud of Jadon,” Cherron Carr said. “We are thankful to CAP for helping him reach his personal goals and dreams. It’s also great for his dad and I to see him rewarded for all his hard work.”

Carr, who is a junior in his homeschool program, plans to study criminal justice but is undecided where he’ll go to college. His career goal is to become an FBI agent.

He has enjoyed his three years in CAP’s cadet program.

“It’s kind of like a family,” he said. “Every member of your squadron is there for you. You get close to them because you do so many activities with them.”

To earn the rank of cadet captain and the Amelia Earhart Award, Carr met several requirements. He passed a timed comprehensive leadership exam as well as a comprehensive exam on aerospace dimension. His physical fitness was also tested.

Once a cadet earns the Amelia Earhart Award, he is promoted to the grade of cadet captain and is challenged to lead and serve junior-ranking cadets not just in the hometown squadron but around the state.

Carr will be able to apply for the award’s most coveted benefit, which is to represent the United States in the International Air Cadet Challenge.

After earning the Earhart Award, only Phase IV of the Cadet Program and the prestigious Spaatz Award Examination remains for Carr to conquer as a CAP cadet.