Nacogdoches CAP cadets could lose their shirts this week

NACOGDOCHES, TX (KTRE) - It's happening this week in Nacogdoches at the Civil Air Patrol Powered Flight Academy.

Following a ground school and flight training experience, CAP cadets take their first solo flight. Then their shirt is cut off.

It's a tradition, of course, which started when instructors had primitive communication with their student.

"The instructor would sit behind the student and the student would be up front," said Danny Graham, a CAP flight instructor. "So when the student was supposed to go up he would push the shirt forward. Okay, now climb, climb. Uh oh, turn left. Turn right, turn right. Let's go down. Let's go down.Whoa, slow down."

Kellin Tompkins of Frisco is solo now and doesn't need his instructor or his shirt. However, someone could give him a dry one. Another tradition is to get doused by your fellow pilots.

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