Steps up when needed to serve its citizens and neighboring states
The “Big Sky Country” of Montana translates into “a big job” for Civil Air Patrol’s Montana Wing. Geographically large but relatively sparsely populated, the state can put the wing to the test.
More than once wing planes and aircrews have been dispatched on mercy missions to help save the lives of hospital patients. CAP crews have flown in blood from as far away as a three hours’ flight time.
With its share of rugged backcountry and dicey weather, the state generates numerous rescue requests. Members’ rescue near Lone Mountain of a hunter who ventured out without survival gear added to CAP’s overall saves record of 140 lives in 1983. A cadet got in on the action when he used the CPR skills he learned in CAP to save the life of a friend’s father; and he just thought he was going to be studying history that night! The Montana Wing has proven to be a good friend to neighboring states, joining in relief efforts following California’s unprecedented Northridge earthquake in 1994. Considered at the time the most costly disaster in U.S. history, the quake measured magnitude 6.6 on the Richter scale and claimed 61 lives.
The Montana Wing was part of a CAP response that included more than 2,700 volunteers who assisted the Red Cross in transporting supplies and personnel and managing shelters for nearly 22,000 disaster victims.