South Tahoe graduate earns Eaker Award
A cadet from the Civil Air Patrol, Blackhawk Composite Squadron has received one of the highest awards achieved in the cadet program. The award, which promoted Patrick Reardon to lieutenant colonel, is one award away from the top honor, the “‘Spatz Award,” which promotes a cadet to colonel. A small percentage of the Civil Air Patrol cadets cross the nation will receive either of these two awards.
Reardon was presented the Eaker Award by Col. Matt Wallace, Nevada Wing Commander at the Nevada Wing Headquarters in Sparks, Nev. He is now eligible to take the four steps required to achieve the Spatz Awards before his 21st birthday in December. He must pass a comprehensive aerospace and leadership written exam by 80 percent, write a moral leadership essay to be reviewed by national headquarters, pass a physically demanding fitness test and complete an oral interview. By passing this achievement, he can receive numerous opportunities for advancement in the military.
Reardon has been an active member of the Civil Air Patrol, an Air Force auxiliary, since 1995. He has served in the Blackhawk Squadron as the cadet commander, deputy cadet commander, executive officer, Nevada Wing Cadet Advisory Council representative, Aerospace Education officer, communication officer, Cadet Squadron advisor, and Color Guard commander. He has served in many capacities at yearly Nevada Wing Encampments, mini-boot camps held at Stead Army Base and Indian Springs Air Force base outside Las Vegas. Positions he has held include encampment commander, deputy encampment commander, flight commander and flight sergeant. During these encampments Reardon has earned numerous awards for his outstanding performance and service.
Awards earned by Reardon at his squadron are the cadet milestone awards — Billie Mitchell, Amelia Earhart and Eaker — as well as a recruitment ribbon, community service ribbon, model rocketry patch and badge, Cadet of the Year and Cadet Officer of the Year. He also earned many ribbons and awards while a member of the NJROTC at South Tahoe High School.
In addition to his exemplary service with NJROTC and CAP, he was selected to attend the American Legion Boys State in Sacramento and the National Youth Leadership Forum on Defense, Intelligence and Diplomacy in Washington, D.C. One of his highest achievements in CAP was earning a three-week trip to Japan as a foreign exchange cadet with the International Air Cadet Exchange Program.
Reardon graduated from South Tahoe High School in 2000, and has completed his sophomore year at the University of Nevada, Reno. He received a four-year Army scholarship and is majoring in criminal justice and minoring in American History. During his freshman year he made the Deans List for the College of Engineering and has earned four additional scholarships toward his education. In the Army ROTC at UNR, he is an active member of the Ranger Challenge Team, the Cannon Crew and is the Color Guard commander. He currently holds the position of first sergeant for UNR and UNLV. At the award ceremony for the ROTC, Reardon brought home five awards. He will enter the Army as a second lieutenant upon graduation from UNR in May 2004. His goal is to become a military pilot.