Central Flying School to host wings parade on Thursday


This Thursday marks the culmination of years of blood, sweat and tears for 24 SA Air Force (SAAF) members who will receive brevets and half brevets to mark their entrance into the ranks of pilots, flight engineers, loadmasters and aerial photographers.

SAAF Chief, Lieutenant General Zakes Msimang, will be the review officer for the 2015 Wings Parade at AFB Langebaanweg’s Central Flying School.

He will award wings (full brevet) to five newly minted male second lieutenants – two Africans, two Coloureds and a white – to mark their successful completion of the pupil pilot’s course.

Msimang will also present half-wings to 11 flight engineers (five white males, a white female, four African males and a Coloured male) with six male aerial photographers (three whites, two Africans and a coloured) receiving half brevets. He will also present half brevets to three men, two Africans and a Coloured, who have qualified as air loadmasters.

The majority of those who have earned their flight engineer’s wings have been trained independently by 35 Squadron at AFB Ysterplaat. The squadron took a decision to train its own flight engineers because it was short of qualified personnel for this important discipline. A source close to the squadron said the new flight engineers would receive the official brevet but indications are they will remain at the Ysterplaat squadron and not be transferred to other units.

During the 2014 wings parade Msimang awarded full brevets to 10 pilots and he was at the West Coast base the previous year to pin wings onto another 10 new additions to the SAAF pilot ranks.