Civil Air Patrol is an Auxiliary unit of the United States Air Force, founded in December 1941, one week before the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. Today, Civil Air Patrol performs over 90 percent of all federal inland search-and-rescue missions directed by the Air Force Rescue Coordination Center at Tyndall Air Force Base, Fl.
Civil Air Patrol has three congressionally-assigned key missions: emergency services, which includes search and rescue (by air and ground) and disaster relief operations; aerospace education for youth and the general public; and cadet programs for teenage youth. In addition, CAP has recently been tasked with homeland security and courier service missions. CAP also performs non-auxiliary missions for various governmental and private agencies, such as local law enforcement and the American Red Cross.