10:49 AM

Guertin, Charter Member, Passes at 92

Col. Carolyn A. Guertin, one of Civil Air Patrol's longest-serving members, died Aug. 8 in Virginia. She was 92.

CAP’s national commander, Maj. Gen. Mark Smith, referred to her on Twitter as “an extraordinary volunteer” who was a “mentor for many, inspiration for all.”

When Guertin turned 92 on June 29, Smith joined other CAP leaders at the national and Virginia Wing levels online in wishing her a happy birthday. "When I open up the book on mentorship, your picture is there," he told her at the time."It is due to your impact on the number of people you have mentored in the Civil Air Patrol over the years.”

Guertin was 13 when she joined the Virginia Wing -- three years younger than what was then the minimum age of 16, prompting her to misstate her age. She recalled being first in line to sign up, but said she was made to wait until 10 men joined. She then became the 11th member of the Virginia Wing.

Over the ensuing 78 years, she held numerous duty positions. She formed Richmond Cadet Squadron Two in 1952 and served as its commander for more than a decade.

The unit, still in existence today, was renamed the Carolyn A. Guertin Cadet Squadron as a tribute to her commitment to the program, the squadron and the cadets she mentored.