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SDWG Aircrews Train for Proficiency

May 25, 2021

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(Sioux Falls) - Ten Civil Air Patrol pilots and aircrew members worked on mission skills Saturday (May 22) during "Mission Pilot Ground Training" conducted by South Dakota Wing. The training was recurrency training for pilots and crew who are already qualified. "It is good training to go over the basics on systems you don't use often, so you don't forget how to use them in a real mission," said Maj. E. W. Filler, CAP, instructor and organizer of the training.

Due to COVID-19 restrictions, this was the first face-to-face meeting of a group, which has been working via videoconference. CDC guidance and CAP policy allows members who are vaccinated to not wear masks.

The day-long flight clinic, both in the classroom and on the flight line, included review search methods, the Garmin G1000 "glass cockpit" used in CAP Cessna 172s and 182s, Becker and other radio equipment, the Fore Flight aviation app, and proper logging. Each pilot completing the training is funded for two hours of flying time to work on the training items covered.

"We talk about training a lot, but readiness for our operational missions assigned but the Air Force is essential and the best way to be ready is regular, frequent training," said Col. Nick Gengler, South Dakota Wing Commander. "Civil Air Patrol in South Dakota performs vital missions for local, state, tribal and federal agencies.

Instructors were Maj. E. W. Filler, class organizer and principal instructor; Lt. Col. Jeremy Langrock, SAR instructions; Maj. Jerry Gabert, Communications; and Capt. Matt Meert, tracking logs. Bagel Boy, at 33rd and Minnesota Avenue in Sioux Falls, contributed coffee and bagels to Civil Air Patrol for the training.

CAP has over 400 members in South Dakota with units in Brookings, Custer, Miller, Pierre, Rapid City, Sioux Falls, Spearfish and Tea. The wing can deploy its six aircraft, ground teams and small search drones to assist in emergency response and other support to local, state, tribal and federal agencies.

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