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An update on CAF RISE ABOVE: WASP

An update on CAF RISE ABOVE: WASP

The CAF RISE ABOVE: WASP team has been working hard to support our passion to honor the Women Air Force Service Pilots (WASP) and share their stories of triumph over adversity…. to RISE ABOVE. Since we began this initiative in 2016 the CAF WASP initiative has really taken off. We have some exciting news and wanted to fill you in on the progress. It’s because of your support that we have been able to launch and move forward with this great educational outreach program and we hope you will continue to stay involved.

The Film
A key component and expense for this initiative is creating a distinctive film about the WASP. Our goal is to create a film that is historic, exciting, and inspirational. We seek to create a window that inspires both young and old to learn more and be inspired to RISE ABOVE in situations they might find themselves in. In the past few months the film crew has been conducting interviews with WASP and doing research. We successfully raised money to start heavy production. We are very excited to announce that we’ve begun filming and will be shooting in Sweetwater, Texas, on August 25 at Avenger Field, the actual location where WASP trained.

THE CAF WASP Squadron
During the Kickstarter campaign, it became apparent that there was a groundswell of people who wanted to get to work immediately. The WASP Squadron, a unit of the Commemorative Air Force, was the fastest growing unit in the history of the CAF. The Squadron now stands at more than 90 members. An AT-6 Texan that was used to train WASP during World War II was purchased and has now been assigned to the squadron which will operate the aircraft. The squadron named the AT-6 Nella, after Fifinella, the mascot of the WASP. Now, with an aircraft, the group of volunteers continues to gain momentum. They have attended over a dozen events in the past two years, meeting with families, Girl Scouts, and school groups, and telling the story of the original WASP program.

The Educational Program and Dome Theaters
The CAF Education team has been developing the next generation of experiential learning based on the success and lessons learned with our other educational programs. We have tested the dome theater with  the CAF RISE ABOVE: RED TAIL film. It was viewed by more than 1,000 people of all ages and it received fantastic responses. For CAF RISE ABOVE: WASP, using a dome theater will make it even easier to bring the program to different locations. We’ve already tested the CAF RISE ABOVE: Red Tail film shown in the dome theater

Thank You
All of this could not have been done without your dedication to the WASP and your financial support to this project. Thank you! Our next steps are to continue fundraising and film production. I hope you will continue to be involved in this initiative. I hope you join in our excitement as we move ahead.

Bill Shepard
Vice President of Education
Commemorative Air Force