About CAP

About Our Organization

Civil Air Patrol (CAP) is a congressionally chartered, federally supported nonprofit, 501(c)(3) organization with aviation-minded members that includes people from all backgrounds, lifestyles, and occupations. CAP isn't a flying club - we're a group dedicated to supporting our local communities.

It all began in December 1941, one week before the attack on Pearl Harbor. A group of advocates envisioned a way to use America's civilian aviation resources (instead of grounding them) during a time of war. Major John F. Curry was appointed the first national commander and during World War II, CAP pilots flew more than 500,000 hours and were credited with sinking two enemy submarines and rescued hundreds of crash survivors. President Harry Truman established CAP as a federally chartered, benevolent, civilian nonprofit organization (now an auxiliary of the U.S. Air Force). CAP has been charged with three primary missions - aerospace education, cadet programs, and emergency services.

As a nonprofit, national CAP receives its funding from several sources: membership dues, corporate donations, Congressional appropriations, and private donations.

Local squadron financial support comes from local membership dues, donations (which are always appreciated), and fundraising. One of CAP's major fundraising programs involves Wreaths Across America - the selling and placing of wreaths in our nation's cemeteries to honor our veterans.

Today, CAP has over 26,000 cadets and nearly 35,000 senior members - in all fifty states, Washington D.C., Puerto Rico, and at numerous overseas U.S. Air Force installations.

The CAP motto is Semper Vigilans - Latin for "Always Vigilant." All CAP members abide by its core values - integrity, volunteer service, excellence and respect.

If you are not currently a volunteer - join today!