Cadets are cleared for take off
THREE-quarters of the 28th Air Corps cadet class received their "wings" at a commissioning ceremony in Baldonnel, Co Dublin, yesterday.
For the three new pilots it marked an end to 39 months in training as they received their Presidential commission from the Chief of Staff of the Defence Forces, Lieut General Sean McCann.
The fourth member of the class was not as lucky. Cadet Colin Gallagher, from Co Clare, broke an arm during training and was unable to achieve the required number of flight hours in time to qualify for his commission.
However, officers said he would shortly be ready to join their ranks.
The three successful pilots are 2/Lieut Stephen Connolly, Cabra, Dublin, Lieut Michael Barcoe, Dundrum, Co Dublin, and Lieut Aonghus O hAlmhain, Inish Oirr, Co Galway. They bring the number of qualified Air Corps military pilots since the foundation of the State to 411.
The three pilots began their military and flight training in September 2007 and they completed 10 months at the Cadet School in the Curragh, followed by 200 hours of flight training on the Pilatus PC9M aircraft at Casement Aerodrome in Baldonnel.