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Oxbow air cadet has thoroughly enjoyed the experience

Jessica Cooper thrived at this year's air cadets speaking competition.
Jessica Cooper is a member of the Bow Valley Air Cadets.

OXBOW - Brad and Michelle Cooper are proud of their daughter Jessica Cooper, who decided to join the Bow Valley Air Cadets in Oxbow.

The family lives in White Bear, and Jessica is a Grade 8 student in Oxbow.

Last September she asked to join the cadets. She wanted to try something that she normally would not do but felt there would be great skills to learn.

Learning commands and effective speaking skills are all part of the experience.

This being Jessica’s first year, and she entered the effective speech speak off. Jessica wrote and titled her speech The Tragedy of the Avro Arrow. It was about the revolutionary plane that was developed and built in Canada and was capable of Mach 2.

Design work on the CF-105 Arrow plane began in 1953, and was produced in 1957-1959. It had its first flight on March 25, 1958, and the project was cancelled by Prime Minister John Diefenbaker on Feb. 20, 1959.

Jessica’s speech closed with a question of how far Canada could have advanced in aerospace technology if the program had not been scrapped. She also memorized her entire speech.

She won at club level and moved onto the zone level on Feb. 1. She had another task to do. The speakers are given 10-12 topics, they have to choose one, and they have five minutes to prepare a two-minute speech.

The topics are all based on aerospace technology as it is the Royal Canadian Air Force's 100th anniversary year.

She won at the zone level and attended provincials in Regina on March 16, where she faced stiff competition. She didn't win, but she was pleased with how she did.

“It was a really good experience to go to Regina and compete,” said Jessica. “I met some great people and learned a lot.”