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SD Wing Performs Search Training in Custer

September 12, 2023

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South Dakota Wing, Civil Air Patrol, conducted its final operational training exercise of the fiscal year in Custer September 8-9. The training included CAP aircrews, ground teams, and drone teams to elevate proficiency for CAP mission operations in the rugged Black Hills.

"Regular training and advancement in our individual capabilities is important to being ready to keep our commitment to serve the people of South Dakota,” said Lt. Col. Craig Goodrich, CAP incident commander for the exercise. “We located targets with multiple airborne search, ground, and drone teams. Our command staff trained on mission management, as well as scenario problem-solving.”

Civil Air Patrol performs search, disaster relief, and other missions in its role as the U.S. Air Force auxiliary, part of the Air Force Total Force. CAP is aligned with First Air Force to rapidly respond to nonmilitary threats domestically when tasked in a Defense Support of Civil Authorities capacity to save lives, relieve suffering, prevent property damage and provide humanitarian assistance.

Custer County Search and Rescue partnered with CAP during the exercise based at CAP’s Crazy Horse Composite Squadron headquarters at Custer County Airport.

"We had CAP members from across the state participating in this exercise," said Goodrich. "We also do training at our home units and online, but our members benefit and look forward to our people, aircraft, vehicles, and drone teams together to cross-pollinate ideas and help each other build proficiency."

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