Established November 9, 1995
Established November 9, 1995
November 9, 2020 will be the 25th Anniversary of the commissioning of Chennault Division. A ceremony is planned for the weekend of November 7th and details will be posted here.
In November 1993, James Dodd and his son Michael joined the USNSCC and Cajun Division in Kaplan LA. Inst Dodd and his son stayed with the unit for 14 months and recruited a few cadets in Lake Charles to join them. In Feb 1995, they left the Cajun Division too establish a unit in Lake Charles and began recruiting. By summer of 1995, they had six sea cadets and one league cadet and readied them for summer training. The navy picked them up in Lafayette and flew them to Great Lakes for recruit training. Those 7 cadets became the leadership and when school started they began recruiting. By October they had the 25 necessary cadets to commission the unit, along with a company of 4 league cadets. They requested the unit be commissioned Veterans Day Weekend on November 9th 1995, at the home of their first sponsor, and first drill location, VFW post 2130 on country club road. By the Spring of '96, The unit had grown to 33 cadets, and by fall, the League Cadet company had grown to 18 Cadets. They requested to commission the League unit on Veterans Day weekend, exactly one year after commissioning the sea cadet unit. Captain Joe Hill, USN Retired, let LT Dodd know that the USS Avenger MCM-1 would be making port in Lake Charles for Veterans Day. LT Dodd contacted the ships CO and the USS Avenger agreed to help commission the league cadet unit. The ships crew fell into formation with the cadets. The ships company and its CO presented the unit with the ships colors and a ships crest. They then marched in the Veterans Day parade. From that day forward they became Chennault Division and Training Ship Avenger.
Historical list of Commanding Officers and their now whereabouts.
LT Dodd first CO of Chennault and TS avenger
Patrick LaPoint XO
Evelyn Dodd - Admin Officer
Sandy LaPoint - Personnel Officer
CAPT Joe Hill USN RET - Committee Chair
CDR Ed Goodwin USN RET Assistant Chair
Michael Dodd was Chennault's first LPO and its first Chief Petty Officer
Emerson Darbone first cadet to join the military. Cadet Darbone joined the navy as a Sonar Tech aboard the USS Russell DDG 59
later LT Dodd became LCDR Dodd and Regional Director
LT Hamer became CO and later served as Supply Officer and Regional Staff
2013 LT Chad LeJune became the CO changed the name to Chennault battalion.
2014 LT Reeder became CO with LTJG Cox as XO
Jan 2018 LT Cox became CO with LTJG Stegall as XO
In December 2018, LT Reeder was promoted to LCDR and became the Regional Director
Chennault is named for Major General Claire Lee Chennault, US Army Air Services, US Army Air Corps, Republic of China Air Forces, US Army Air Forces 1917-1945, he established the American Volunteer Pilots serving in China known as the Flying Tigers.