Civil Air Patrol was founded in December 1941, one week before the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, by more than 150,000 citizens who were concerned about the defense of America‘s coastline. Under the jurisdiction of the Army Air Forces, CAP pilots flew more than one-half million hours, were credited with sinking two enemy submarines and rescued hundreds of crash survivors during World War II. On July 1, 1946, President Harry Truman established CAP as a federally chartered benevolent civilian corporation, and Congress passed Public Law 557 on May 26, 1948. CAP was charged with three primary missions – aerospace education, cadet programs and emergency services. With the passage of Public Law 106-398 in October 2000, Congress provided that "The Civil Air Patrol is a volunteer civilian auxiliary of the Air Force when the services of the Civil Air Patrol are used by any department or agency in any branch of the federal government."
New Jersey is the birthplace of Civil Air Patrol. Its' first missions launched from "Coast Patrol Base # 1", located at Bader Field, just outside of Atlantic City, NJ.
The Civil Air Patrol was founded at a time of national crisis, mobilizing civilian volunteers to defend the nation as in no time since the American Revolution. No wonder they were called “Flying Minutemen.” In today’s post-9/11 world, it’s instructive to see how America — and America’s civilian pilots — answered the call to help defeat a foreign threat on America’s shores and coastal waters. The story continues through the Cold War to more recent times in the same spirit of the CAP Subchasers of WWII.
"Supporting America's communities with emergency response, diverse aviation and ground services,
youth development and promotion of air, space and cyber power."
Civil Air Patrol: the nation’s finest volunteer force of citizen professionals performing Missions for America.
Semer Vigilans - "Always Vigilant"
Integrity - Volunteer Service - Excellence - Respect