In Memory

James Hottois

James Hottois

Many may know that Jim Hottois has passed.  We are waiting for the family to issue an official obituary and will add it to Jim’s profile when received.  Until an obituary is issued a memorial provided by his involvement in the Civil Air Patrol is being included in his profile.

Today, Riverside Squadron 5 and Civil Air Patrol lost a great friend. 

This morning Lt Col James Hottois flew West on his final sortie after a short battle with cancer.

Hailing from Batavia, NY, he, and his wife Sue lived all over the United States as he progressed in an academic career, finally settling with homes in both Palm Springs and Vancouver, WA. Lt Col Hottois joined Civil Air Patrol in 1999, settling in Palm Springs Squadron 11. After a career as a college professor and college president, he retired and devoted a great deal of his time and expertise to CAP.

Jim was a Command Pilot, check pilot examiner, mission check pilot examiner, Airborne Operations Branch Manager, even an Airborne Photographer. He flew all missions including the Reaper escort mission in New York. He held a Commercial Certificate with Single and Muli-Engine Land, Single-Engine Sea, and Instrument ratings. He was a CFI with a Single-Engine Land rating.

Perhaps Jim's greatest impact has been as CAWG Director of Counterdrug for the last several years, maintaining a robust Counterdrug effort in various segments of our area of operation. He came to this position through the ranks and after many, many hours flying those missions. His love of the mission and affinity for those who flew it was apparent in the way he immersed himself in the endeavor. Certainly, his influence will be felt throughout the program for years to come.

Jim's contributions to Civil Air Patrol are many and diverse. From SAR/CD pilot to Region Staff College faculty, from primary instructor pilot for cadets to counterdrug mission manager, from Airborne Photographer to Reaper escort pilot. Certainly, a prodigious level of accomplishment. However, it should be noted that Jim was always approachable, with a great empathy and a wonderful sense of humor. His voice was big and his laugh was loud and unmistakable. He will be greatly missed in every way.

It is only appropriate that shortly after Jim flew West this morning, CAP487 flew one solo counterdrug mission. The aircraft is assigned to his home squadron, Palm Springs Squadron 11, and an airplane in which he flew hundreds of hours, and many counterdrug sorties and in which he trained many pilots and cadets. Jim saw a lot of sunrises and sunsets in this G1000 while flying our Missions for America. 

This morning, CAP487 was flown by Riverside Squadron 5 Commander, 1st Lt Andrey Tikhonov and Inland Empire Group 3 Operations Officer, Maj Terry Pratt, on Sortie A0728. They flew for 3.2 hours, low-level, in the prime, most impactful segment of our area of responsibility in the professional manner we expect of our pilots. Wedged in between the panel and windscreen, always in view, was a folded American flag in honor of Lt Col James Hottois and the outstanding service he performed for our community and nation.

Ops Normal, Jim. We'll see you at the big RTB.