17:10 PM

Blazich, Departing National Historian, Honored With Distinguished Service Medal

Col. Frank Blazich's service as Civil Air Patrol national historian, which began in April 2013 and ends this weekend, has been recognized with the organization's Distinguished Service Medal.

The award, presented this morning at the Winter Command Council in Washington, D.C., cites “Blazich's many accomplishments during this period (that) involved hundreds of man hours” and “contributions unrivaled by any other national historian.”

His tenure as national historian included several major initiatives highlighting the organization’s origins, history and heritage — most prominently:

  • The presentation of the Congressional Gold Medal in December 2014 in recognition of CAP's volunteer service during World War II.
  • The 2016 observation of the 75th anniversary of CAP's founding.
  • Cadet Programs’ 75th anniversary, observed last year.
  • This year's observation of the 70th anniversary of the public law that made CAP the official Air Force auxiliary.

I am honored and humbled to have had the opportunity since April 2013 to lead and work with a team of dedicated Americans committed to the preservation of the history of a unique and outstanding group of citizen airmen,said Blazich. To quote CAP's founder, I walked with giants and can reflect on many accomplishments by the men and women of the CAP National History Program.

Blazich has completed all five levels of CAP’s senior member professional development program and holds a Master rating as a CAP historian. He has a doctorate degree in history from Ohio State University and previously served as historian of the Ohio Wing.

He works as a military curator with the Smithsonian Institution in the nation's capital, and will remain active in CAP.

“I'm looking forward to the years to come,” he said. “I am confident that the work of all of our volunteer historians will prove beneficial in sharing the story of the Civil Air Patrol with the wider academic historian community and the American people writ large.”