National Geographic : 1956 May
647 Civil Air Patrol A Sidewalk Photographer Snaps CAP Exchange Cadets in Habana Youths from 21 nations visited the United States last year, and CAP cadets went abroad, in a program to foster friendship through aviation (page 654). These young Americans and escorts pose before Cuba's Capitol. The antlike figures I glimpsed included 17 members of the Wyoming Wing. They camped beneath the peak for several days, assisting in the removal of bodies. Volunteers often perform this grim task. Survival in wilderness crashes is more the exception than the rule. Yet, as we have seen, CAP saves some downed flyers each year. Patrol members found 38 persons on Air Rescue missions in 1955, but the records do not state how many of these were flyers. Sim ilarly, no one adds up wrecks found by the volunteers. It is enough, apparently, that the job gets done, and there is no desire on any one's part for a lion's share of the credit. A like reticence governs CAP's mercy mis sions. Not so reticent are the rescued them selves, who often pen fervent, unsolicited tes timonials to squadrons: "I am forever grateful," wrote a Florida fisherman rescued from a swamp. "Just 'thank you' seems so little for the gratitude we feel," said the parents of a Nevada child saved from the desert.