C/Col. Niswender, Spaatz #1492
Award Presentation and Ceremony
May 17, 2003
Fort Collins Country Club

On May 17, 2003, Cadet Colonel Niswender became only the 1492nd cadet to receive the Spaatz Award. While there have been more than 250,000 Civil Air Patrol cadets since the award's inception in 1963, only 1/10th of 1% of cadets reach this lofty and difficult goal. Thompson Valley Composite Squadron is proud of this exceptional young woman.

Of course, the ceremony was a "solemn" and formal affair!  Though Colorado Senator Marilyn Musgrave made the actual presentation of the Spaatz, she had to wait her turn until all the other awards were made.

Being an official CAP function, it started with the color guard. Aside from dueling with the chandelier (ask Hart), the colors were presented flawlessly.   The Air Force Association Award
  Next, the Longs Peak Chapter of the Air Force Association named C/Niswender the CAP Cadet of the Year. This came with $100 US Savings Bond! (That's a couple of hours of flight time.)


Lt. Col. Philip Biersdorfer, Colorado Wing Vice Commander presents the Veterans of Foreign Wars Citation and Medal Award for outstanding achievement and leadership ability.

The Veterans of Foreign Wars
Citation and Medal Award

Colorado Senator Marilyn Musgrave signed a letter commending C/Niswender for her achievements.

Your can read the letter, too. 


The dignitaries came out of the woodwork each speaking of the dedication and talents of C/Col Niswender. The best part was that she couldn't escape!     
Thompson Valley Composite Squadron Commander Mike Fassi spoke.

Followed by Brigadier General James Bobick, past CAP National Commander! That is impressive company you're keeping!

A fellow Spaatzian and past CAP National Legal Officer, Col. David Simmons, offered words of inspiration and an injunction to maintain the highest level of integrity. (There are reasons for which a Spaatz can be revoked!)
  Finally, Senator Musgrave got her opportunity to lavish more praise and remind us that the future will be shaped by leaders like C/Niswender.  

And, gosh, after all that, there was this little award to be presented...

It was a very serious moment!


Of course, after the ceremony,
wanted their picture taken with the new celebrity...

Gen. Bobick, C/Col. Niswender, Senator Musgrave

1Lt Mike Fassi, C/Col. Niswender, Senator Musgrave

Lt.Col. Biersdorfer, C/Col. Niswender, Senator Musgrave

C/Col. Niswender, Col. Simmons

Parents, Guy and Kathy Niswender, and C/Col. Niswender And Grandparents... 
And longtime family friend 

What a great group! Capt. Debbie Hines and the TVCS cadets.



Even I got in on the act!




Until she just couldn't take it any more!!!

  I think all the attention finally got to her...


(Look at this picture carefully.)


Congratulations on all your awards!

We are so very proud of you.

Flying High!

Spaatz #1492

High Flight
by John Gillespie Magee, Jr.


This page brought to you by 2Lt. Brenda Kononen,
parttime TVCS photographer, web designer,
and friend.