WADS awarded 2nd Canadian Air Division Commander's Commendation

Canadian Brig. Gen. David Cochrane, 2nd Canadian Air Division commander, is greeted upon landing by 62nd Airlift Wing and Western Air Defense Sector leadership April 6.  As part of Cochrane’s official visit to Joint Base Lewis-McChord, he received a WADS mission briefing and operations floor tour prior to his attendance as the guest speaker for the WADS Canadian Detachment’s annual Mess Dinner marking the 93rd anniversary of the formation of the Royal Canadian Air Force. Pictured from left to right: Canadian Warrant Officer Rick Martin, WADS Canadian Detachment, Canadian Capt. Robert Bell, WADS Canadian Detachment, Canadian Lt. Col. Matt Wappler, WADS Canadian Detachment commander, Col. Gregor Leist, WADS commander and Col. Leonard Kosinski, 62nd Airlift Wing commander, Canadian Brig. Gen. David Cochrane, 2nd CAD commander, and Canadian Capt. Brian Noel, 2nd CAD commander executive assistant.  (U.S. Air Force photo by Kimberly D. Burke)

Canadian Brig. Gen. David Cochrane, 2nd Canadian Air Division commander, is greeted upon landing by 62nd Airlift Wing and Western Air Defense Sector leadership April 6. As part of Cochrane’s official visit to Joint Base Lewis-McChord, he received a WADS mission briefing and operations floor tour prior to his attendance as the guest speaker for the WADS Canadian Detachment’s annual Mess Dinner marking the 93rd anniversary of the formation of the Royal Canadian Air Force. Pictured from left to right: Canadian Warrant Officer Rick Martin, WADS Canadian Detachment, Canadian Capt. Robert Bell, WADS Canadian Detachment, Canadian Lt. Col. Matt Wappler, WADS Canadian Detachment commander, Col. Gregor Leist, WADS commander and Col. Leonard Kosinski, 62nd Airlift Wing commander, Canadian Brig. Gen. David Cochrane, 2nd CAD commander, and Canadian Capt. Brian Noel, 2nd CAD commander executive assistant. (U.S. Air Force photo by Kimberly D. Burke)

Canadian Brig. Gen. David Cochrane (second from left), 2nd Canadian Air Division commander and Canadian Lt. Col. Matt Wappler (second from right), Western Air Defense Sector Canadian Detachment commander, are led by bagpiper Van Bradley symbolizing the start of the Canadian Mess Dinner.  The annual dinner marked the 93rd anniversary of the formation of the Royal Canadian Air Force (RCAF).  At the end of the night, Cochrane formally recognized WADS with the 2nd CAD Commander’s Unit Commendation for providing critical live and virtual training to Canadian aerospace controllers from the 51 Aerospace Control and Warning (Operational Training) Squadron located in North Bay, Ontario. (Courtesy photo by Conrad Neumann III)

Canadian Brig. Gen. David Cochrane (second from left), 2nd Canadian Air Division commander and Canadian Lt. Col. Matt Wappler (second from right), Western Air Defense Sector Canadian Detachment commander, are led by bagpiper Van Bradley symbolizing the start of the Canadian Mess Dinner. The annual dinner marked the 93rd anniversary of the formation of the Royal Canadian Air Force (RCAF). At the end of the night, Cochrane formally recognized WADS with the 2nd CAD Commander’s Unit Commendation for providing critical live and virtual training to Canadian aerospace controllers from the 51 Aerospace Control and Warning (Operational Training) Squadron located in North Bay, Ontario. (Courtesy photo by Conrad Neumann III)

During the annual WADS Canadian Mess Dinner, Canadian Brig. Gen. David Cochrane (middle-right), 2nd Canadian Air Division commander, presents Col. Gregor J. Leist (middle-left), Western Air Defense Sector commander, with the 2nd CAD Commander’s Unit Commendation.  Canadian Lt. Col. Matt Wappler (right), WADS Canadian Detachment commander, nominated WADS for consistently providing critical live and virtual training to Canadian aerospace controllers from the 51 Aerospace Control and Warning (Operational Training) Squadron located at North Bay, Ontario. (Courtesy photo by Conrad Neumann III)

During the annual WADS Canadian Mess Dinner, Canadian Brig. Gen. David Cochrane (middle-right), 2nd Canadian Air Division commander, presents Col. Gregor J. Leist (middle-left), Western Air Defense Sector commander, with the 2nd CAD Commander’s Unit Commendation. Canadian Lt. Col. Matt Wappler (right), WADS Canadian Detachment commander, nominated WADS for consistently providing critical live and virtual training to Canadian aerospace controllers from the 51 Aerospace Control and Warning (Operational Training) Squadron located at North Bay, Ontario. (Courtesy photo by Conrad Neumann III)

The 2nd Canadian Air Division Commander’s Unit Commendation citiation is presented to the Western Air Defense Sector during the Canadian Mess Dinner April 7 for providing critical live and virtual training to Canadian aerospace controllers from the 51 Aerospace Control and Warning (Operational Training) Squadron from North Bay, Ontario.

The 2nd Canadian Air Division Commander’s Unit Commendation citiation is presented to the Western Air Defense Sector during the Canadian Mess Dinner April 7 for providing critical live and virtual training to Canadian aerospace controllers from the 51 Aerospace Control and Warning (Operational Training) Squadron from North Bay, Ontario.

Col. Gregor J. Leist, Western Air Defense Sector commander, passes the port to Canadian Brig. Gen. David Cochrane, 2nd Canadian Air Division commander, during the annual Canadian Mess Dinner marking the 93rd anniversary of the formation of the Royal Canadian Air Force.  The manner in which the port is passed is military service specific.  In case of the Air Force, the port never touches the table to symbolize flight.  The port is used for all of the official toasts during the Mess Dinner.  (U.S. Air Force photo by Kimberly D. Burke)

Col. Gregor J. Leist, Western Air Defense Sector commander, passes the port to Canadian Brig. Gen. David Cochrane, 2nd Canadian Air Division commander, during the annual Canadian Mess Dinner marking the 93rd anniversary of the formation of the Royal Canadian Air Force. The manner in which the port is passed is military service specific. In case of the Air Force, the port never touches the table to symbolize flight. The port is used for all of the official toasts during the Mess Dinner. (U.S. Air Force photo by Kimberly D. Burke)

Canadian Brig. Gen. David Cochrane, 2nd Canadian Air Division commander, pass the port to Canadian Lt. Col. Matt Wappler, Wester Air Defense Sector Canadian Detachment commander, during the annual Canadian Mess Dinner marking the 93rd anniversary of the formation of the Royal Canadian Air Force.  The manner in which the port is passed is military service specific.  In case of the Air Force, the port never touches the table to symbolize flight.  The port is used for all of the official toasts during the Mess Dinner.  (U.S. Air Force photo by Kimberly D. Burke)

Canadian Brig. Gen. David Cochrane, 2nd Canadian Air Division commander, pass the port to Canadian Lt. Col. Matt Wappler, Wester Air Defense Sector Canadian Detachment commander, during the annual Canadian Mess Dinner marking the 93rd anniversary of the formation of the Royal Canadian Air Force. The manner in which the port is passed is military service specific. In case of the Air Force, the port never touches the table to symbolize flight. The port is used for all of the official toasts during the Mess Dinner. (U.S. Air Force photo by Kimberly D. Burke)

JOINT BASE LEWIS-MCCHORD, Wash. --

During the Western Air Defense Sector Canadian Detachment’s annual Mess Dinner marking the 93rd anniversary of the formation of the Royal Canadian Air Force (RCAF) April 7, the 2nd Canadian Air Division/Air Force Doctrine and Training Division commander recognized WADS with the 2nd CAD Commander’s Unit Commendation citation.

Canadian Brig. Gen. David Cochrane, 2nd CAD commander and guest speaker, wanted to formally recognize the strong, long standing bi-national relationship within WADS.

“As an integral part of NORAD, the Western Air Defense Sector plays a critical role to national sovereignty of guarding America’s skies, but also providing support to Canada,” Cochrane said.  “The interactions of WADS with our own Canadian Air Defense Sector in North Bay (Ontario) has been invaluable.”

Cochrane explained that recent restructuring of the RCAF has placed more demand for aerospace controllers but in turn has created training issues.  

“WADS has been stepping up consistently by providing critical live and Distributed Mission Operations -- virtual battlespace linking a wide array of high fidelity flight and mission crew simulators -- in order for new Canadian aerospace controllers to be qualified,” said Canadian Lt. Col. Matt Wappler, WADS Canadian Detachment commander, as part of the training solution.

The 51 Aerospace Control and Warning (Operational Training) Squadron in North Bay, typically sends their weapon’s director students and instructors to WADS for three weeks, a couple of times a year, to conduct the live phase of training and often the initial aerospace controller evaluations.  Over the last three years, WADS has enabled 39 Canadian aerospace controller students to receive their qualification.

Wappler expressed that this award was a culmination of the efforts of the 225th Air Defense Group, 225th Air Defense Squadron, and 225th Support Squadron that make up WADS because “each contributed in different ways to the support of the Combined Force training.”