Way back in 1982, Amy Myzie knew it was time to rejoin Civil Air Patrol after a lapse of a few years during her new career at a New Jersey police department.
She had joined CAP as a cadet in the early 1970s in Connecticut and loved it. In 1978 she was hired as a dispatcher for the Piscataway Township Police Department and a year later became an officer. She served for 30 years, moving from patrol officer to sergeant and lieutenant before retiring in 2010.
In 1982, after dropping out for a while to get her police career off to a good start, she was ready to reconnect with Civil Air Patrol, this time as an adult member.
She’s never doubted any of those decisions.
“After I settled down in New Jersey, I knew I still needed to give back to CAP because of the great experience I had in Connecticut as a teen,” said Myzie, now a CAP lieutenant colonel. “There is no doubt that I found the right squadron because that is where I met my husband!”
Lt. Col. Edward Myzie died in September 2018, and Amy Myzie felt the best way to honor him was to create a scholarship in his name to pay for cadets to attend a National Flight Academy. Proceeds from the Lt. Col. Edward J. Myzie Flight Scholarship, established in August 2019, go toward the cost of attending a flight academy one week each summer.
“Ed was a member of the very first flight academy in New Jersey,” Amy Myzie said. “He was very, very proud of that fact.”
He would be equally proud of how high his wife has soared in Civil Air Patrol. She serves as vice commander for operations in the New Jersey Wing while also staying active as a CAP mission pilot check pilot, incident commander, and character development officer for the Raritan Valley Composite Squadron. Her future goals include being rated as a commercial pilot and as a flight instructor.
“I am currently studying for my FAA commercial written exam and working on my flight maneuvers as well,” she said. “I have not given up.”
Her success in Civil Air Patrol stemmed from her experiences as a cadet in the early 1970s in Connecticut. A highlight of those years was participating in the International Air Cadet Exchange in 1975 and traveling to Great Britain, where she celebrated her 18th birthday — and American Independence Day — on July 4.
She also immediately saw her CAP involvement’s benefits when she was trained as an emergency medical technician in 1977 and then became a police dispatcher. She did that job for 18 months and then was hired as a police officer in 1979.
“I really think that CAP had a significant influence in my career,” she said, “because it gave me the stability and focus to realize my desire was to serve others.”
Col. Andrew Liput, New Jersey Wing commander, first met Myzie at a ground team weekend encampment about seven years ago. That’s a day he cherishes. He described Myzie as smart, dedicated, funny, committed to excellence, and completely trustworthy.
“When she says she will do something, she does it on time and well,” Liput said. “She is a critical component of my command team, and I consider her a mentor and friend as well.”
People who depend on Myzie’s skills and commitment to the job appreciate those same traits. She and Ed were still flying missions together as late as 2017.
During CAP’s National Conference in San Antonio that August, an emergency plea went out for volunteer pilots and co-pilots to assist in the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey, which had made landfall Aug. 25 on the Texas Gulf Coast. The Myzies immediately volunteered and aided the recovery efforts.
From her beginnings as a cadet through today, Myzie said she has been supported and encouraged by others in Civil Air Patrol. Now she is showing the same support and encouragement to the younger people she works with. She encourages young people to join if they haven’t already.
“Take advantage of everything CAP has to offer” is her advice. The cadet program is designed to give youth the knowledge and leadership tools they need to succeed in life, she said, and the character development program gives them the foundation to do the right thing, whether at a CAP meeting or at school.
And national special activities allow cadets to explore broad areas of interest that can help them determine a future career.
Liput would add that future cadets are likely to be trained under the best — like Myzie, who he said has had an impact on the lives of many cadets and adult members. She’s a credit to the New Jersey Wing and to CAP in general and deserves national recognition for her tireless, unselfish commitment and service, the wing commander said.
“She is widely respected and seen as an inspirational leader who is highly knowledgeable of our mission,” Liput said, “and willing to give her time freely to help others advance and achieve success in the program.”
The scholarship Myzie established in 2019 honors not only her late husband but also recognizes Civil Air Patrol and the many opportunities it provides.
“Being able to contribute to our youth and their ability to forward their flight training is my most treasured role,” she said. “To see the great support that CAP has from the U.S. Air Force and to personally help our future leaders to achieve their goals to fly is the best feeling of all.”
This profile of Lt. Col. Amy Myzie is 12th in a regular series of articles showcasing how CAP and its members make an impact throughout the nation.