[Editor’s Note: This “heroic” event turned out to be a staged fraud. CAP Gen Pineda was later terminated for USAF examination fraud unrelated to this incident. CAP Col Levitch & CAP Col Parker received no punishment, except the loss of their Silver Medal of Valor. Parker is still active with the Florida Wing]
CAP HEROES – “so that others may live” – Silver Medal of Valor Recipients: Maj Gen Tony Pineda, National Commander, Col Dan Levitch, FL Wing Commander and Col Eileen Parker, FL Wing Vice Commander, received the Silver Medal of Valor. This award is the highest honor that is presented within the Civil Air Patrol. Each received this special award because they risked their life in order to save others when they came upon an automobile accident while returning from National Headquarters. Gen Pineda assumed the duty of directing traffic and oversight of the accident. Because of the imminent danger to the trapped occupants and leaking fuel, Col Levitch climbed through a window to assess the injuries of the four passengers, extricated them from their seat belts and passed them through a small window. Col Parker laid the victims down away from the vehicle, aided and consoled them.