South Dakota Wing of the Civil Air Patrol, the United States Air Force
Auxiliary, is made up of about 200 adults (senior members) and
about 120 youth members (cadets). All are civilian volunteers who contribute
their time and energy to the organization.
The commander of South Dakota Wing is Colonel John Seten of
Sioux Falls. Also a volunteer, Colonel Seten has most recently served as Wing Director of Operations. Seten also serves as incident commander and a mission pilot in support of state and federal disaster relief efforts.
The state headquarters, also known as Wing Headquarters, is located in
Rapid City. Local chapters, known as Squadrons or Flights, depending on
their size, are located in ten communities
around South Dakota. The CAP units in South Dakota all support the Cadet
Program as well as Senior Member activities.
Six aircraft owned by the national Civil Air Patrol organization, three
Cessna 182 Skylanes (2 of which have the latest "glass cockpits") and
three Cessna 172 Skyhawks, are assigned to South
Dakota Wing. The aircraft are rotated around the state as needed to support
actual missions and training activities.
Complimenting South Dakota Wing's airborne operations, the wing
fields several experienced "Ground Teams" and "Urban DF Teams,"
usually with mixed senior and cadet membership.
These search teams, trained in first aid, ground navigation and
direction finding radio equipment, are often first on the scene of a
downed aircraft or missing person search.
Find out more in "A Brief History of
South Dakota Wing" by Wing Historian and former Wing Commander Lester W.
Snyder, COL, CAP.