93d Air-Ground Operations Wing


93d Air-Ground Operations Wing

Infobox Military Unit
unit_name=93d Air-Ground Operations Wing


caption=
dates= 20 November 1940 — 30 September 2002; 25 January 2008-Present
country=United States
allegiance=
branch=Air Force
type=
role=
size=
command_structure=
current_commander= [http://www.af.mil/bios/bio.asp?bioID=8640 Brig. Gen. Michael A. Longoria]
garrison=Moody Air Force Base
ceremonial_chief=
colonel_of_the_regiment=
nickname=
patron=
motto=
colors=
identification_symbol=
march=
mascot=
battles=
notable_commanders= John K. Gerhart
anniversaries=
decorations=
battle_honours=

The 93d Air-Ground Operations Wing is a support wing of the United States Air Force. It was reactivated in January 2008 as an air-ground operations wing, and controls the 3d Air Support Operations Group, 18th Air Support Operations Group and the 820th Security Forces Group.

Prior to that is was the 93d Air Control Wing and last activated at Robins AFB, Georgia on 29 January 1996. The 93d's mission was to support the E-8C Joint Surveillance Target Attack Radar System (Joint STARS) and it accepted its first production aircraft on 11 June 1996.

The 93d ACW inactivated at Robins AFB on 30 September 2002. Its mission and resources passed to the Georgia Air National Guard’s 116th Air Control Wing as it assumed command responsibility for the Joint STARS mission and the first ever “blended wing,” combining active-duty and Air National Guard personnel, aircraft, and facilities under one commander.

History

Operational history

World War II

The 93d was originally established as the 93d Bombardment Group which activated during the early days of World War II on 28 January 1942, at Barksdale Field, Louisiana. Shortly after training for combat with Consolidated B-24 Liberators the group transferred to Fort Myers, Florida in May of that year engaging in antisubmarine operations over the Gulf of Mexico and the Caribbean Sea until July.

Based at Royal Air Force (RAF) Alconbury, England on 7 September 1942, the group was known as the "Travelling Circus". The group's tail code was "Circle B". Its operational squadrons and fuselage codes were:

* 328th Bomb Squadron (GO)
* 329th Bomb Squadron (RE)
* 330th Bomb Squadron (AG)
* 409th Bomb Squadron (YM)

The 93d was the first Liberator-equipped bomber group to reach the Eighth Air Force, and entered combat on 9 October blasting industrial targets in France, submarine pens in the Bay of Biscay, and enemy shipping and communications in North Africa- for which it earned its first Distinguished Unit Citation (DUC). The group went on to support the invasion of Sicily and was awarded a second DUC for the now famous low-level attack on enemy oil installations in Ploesti, Romania.

While the 93d was at RAF Alconbury, His Majesty, King George VI paid his first visit to an Eighth Air Force base on 13 November, 1942. During the visit, he was shown the B-24 "Teggie Ann", then considered to be the 93d's leading aircraft.

On 6 December 1942 most of the group was transferred to Twelfth Air Force in North Africa to support the Operation Torch landings. Throughout the remainder of the war the 93d racked up an impressive combat record with the invasion of Italy in Sept 1943; strategic bombing in Germany; the Normandy invasion in June 1944; Operation Market Garden transporting supplies to the Allies advancing across France and to airborne troops in Holland; and striking enemy targets during the Battle of the Bulge in December 1944 through January 1945.

Cold War

In June 1945, the group returned to the United States and was re-equipped with Boeing B-29 Superfortress bombers. It became a part of Strategic Air Command (SAC) on March 31 1946. The 93d was one of SAC's first ten bomb groups. In June 1946 it was reassigned to Merced Army Airfield (later Castle AFB, California. There it achieved and maintained combat readiness for global strategic bombardment in the early days of the cold war and was a premier guardian of peace for the next 50 years throughout the Cold War era.

On 28 July 1947, the 93d Bombardment Wing, (Very Heavy) was established, taking over the organization and operation of the World War II Army Air Force group structure.

In 1948, the entire wing deployed to Okinawa, making it the first SAC bomb wing to deploy to the Far East in full strength. The B-36 Peacemaker entered SAC's inventory in 1948 and was assigned to the 93d. The huge plane dwarfed the earlier B-29 (and also B-50) bombers. The 93d, was redesignated the 93d Bombardment Wing (Medium) as only the B-36 groups were "Heavy."

In 1949, the wing received its first B-50 Superfortress aircraft, an improved version of the B-29. It struck up operations overseas with the deployment of its tactical force to RAF Mildenhall, England (July 1950-Jan 1951) in response to communist aggression on the Korean peninsula. Meanwhile, the 93d Air Refueling Squadron was activated on 1 March 1949, equipped with the KB-29P (a B-29 bomber modified with a refueling boom).

The 93d continued to move forward throughout the 1950s, re-equipping with the most advanced aircraft available. In May 1954, the wing received the first B-47 Stratojets, but its involvement with the B-47 was curtailed on June 29 1955, when the wing received SAC’s first Boeing B-52B Stratofortress in June 1955 and the Boeing KC-135A Stratotanker in January 1957. making it the first SAC bomb wing to receive the new aircraft. It became SAC’s primary B-52 aircrew training organization in 1956. The wing was redesignated the 93d Bombardment Wing (Heavy) on 1 February 1955. The 93d retained some of its B-47s until 1956 for crew training purposes. It was one of the few wings to have operated both jet bombers simultaneously.

In 1956, the wings three bombardment squadrons - 328th, 329th and 330th began receiving the new B-52D. The following year, they began receiving the B-52E model, while some B-52Bs remained with the 93 BW until well into the 1960s.

On November 24 and 25, 1956, in a spectacular operation known as Quick Kick, four B-52Bs of the 93 BW joined four B-52Cs of the 42 BW for a nonstop flight around the perimeter of North America. Four in-flight refuelings by KC-97 tankers were required for the 13,500 nautical mile journey.

Three 93d B-52Bs flew the first non-stop jet (B-52s) around-the-world flight in January 1957. They flew via Newfoundland, Casablanca, Dhahran, Ceylon, the Malay Peninsula, Manila and Guam. Upon landing at March AFB, California, General Curtis LeMay, SAC Commander-in-Chief greeted the crews and presented them with the Distinguished Flying Cross.

As SAC’s alert commitment grew during the late 1950s and early 1960s, the 93d provided a strong and capable force for deterrence. Cold War tensions reached new heights during this time period with events such as the Cuban Missile Crisis in 1962.

Throughout the height of the Vietnam War (1968 – 1974) the wing operated a special B-52 aircrew replacement training unit to support SAC’s B-52 operations in Southeast Asia .

The 93d recorded another first on 10 June 1982 when the first all female KC-135 crew, “Fair Force One,” flew a five-hour training sortie.

Finally in August 1990 the 93d found itself back at war. At home its support units operated an aerial port of embarkation for personnel and equipment deploying to Southwest Asia (SWA). Overseas its KC-135s refueled planes and ferried personnel and equipment to the region, while its B-52s bombed the Iraqi Republican Guard and targeted Iraqi infrastructure throughout January and February 1991.

Post Cold War

The Air Force underwent major restructuring after the Cold War ended. On 1 September 1991, the 93d lost its air refueling commitment, (924th ARS), and its KC-135 aircrew training missions (329th CCTS). It also implemented the objective wing organization and was redesignated as the 93d Wing.

On 1 June 1992 the 93d was relieved from assignment to SAC and was reassigned to the newly-formed Air Combat Command (ACC). It was then redesignated as the 93d Bomb Wing.

Shortly afterwards nationwide base closures (BRAC) targeted Castle AFB. The 322d Bomb Squadron was inactivated 3 May 1994, and the wing was placed on non-operational status. However, the 93d continued to supervise the closure of Castle AFB. It was inactivated on 30 September 1995 with the closure of the base.

This was not the end of the 93d however. Just four months later it was redesignated as the 93d Air Control Wing (93 ACW) and was reactivated at Robins AFB, Georgia on 29 January 1996. It was to be equipped with the E-8C Joint Surveillance Target Attack Radar System (Joint STARS) and it accepted its first production aircraft on 11 June 1996.

From late October through December 1996, the wing deployed to Rhein-Main AB, Germany for operations JOINT ENDEAVOR and JOINT GUARD in Bosnia and Herzegovina. It provided “top cover” for United Nations (UN) peacekeeping forces and monitored the warring factions for violations of UN resolutions.

Marking an historic event for the wing, Air Combat Command declared the 93d ACW "Initial Operational Capable" on 18 December 1997.

As tensions mounted between Iraq and the UN in 1998, the 93d deployed an element to SWA to monitor Iraqi military movements. In February 1999 it deployed an aircraft to Europe to support NATO's monitoring of tensions between Serbia and Kosovo. The new wing saw its first combat during operations in Kosovo, playing a major role in the destruction of enemy targets and compiling over 1,000 combat hours.

In November 2001 through April 2002 the wing deployed in response to the September 11th terrorist attacks against the United States in support of OPERATION ENDURING FREEDOM.

The 93 ACW inactivated at Robins AFB on 30 September 2002. Its mission and resources became a part of Air Force history on that day as the Georgia Air National Guard’s 116th Bomb Wing (now redesignated the 116th Air Control Wing (116th ACW)) assumed command responsibility for the Joint STARS mission and the first ever “blended wing,” combining active-duty and Air National Guard personnel, aircraft, and facilities under one commander under the newly-activated 116th ACW.

93d Air Ground Operations Wing

The 93d Air Ground Operations Wing (93 AGOW) is a non-flying active support wing activated on 25 January 2008. The 93d's mission is to manage and providing combat-ready tactical air control party personnel, battlefield weather, and force protection assets for joint forces commanders. The wing is based at Moody AFB, Georgia.

Lineage

* Constituted as 93d Bombardment Group (Heavy) on 28 Jan 1942
** Activated on 1 Mar 1942
* Established as 93d Bombardment Wing, (Very Heavy), on 28 Jul 1947
** Organized on 15 Aug 1947
** Redesignated: 93d Bombardment Wing, (Medium), on 12 Jul 1948
** Redesignated: 93d Bombardment Wing, (Heavy), on 1 Feb 1955
** Redesignated: 93d Wing on 1 Sep 1991
** Redesignated: 93d Bomb Wing on 1 Jun 1992
** Inactivated on 30 Sep 1995
* Redesignated 93d Air Control Wing on 15 Jan 1996.
** Activated on 29 Jan 1996
** Inactivated 30 September 2002
* Redesignated 93d Air-Ground Operations Wing
** Activated on 25 January 2008

Bases assigned

* Barksdale Field, Louisiana 1 Mar 1942
* Ft Myers, Florida 15 May-2 Aug 1942
* RAF Alconbury, England 7 Sep 1942 102
* RAF Hardwick, England 6 Dec 1942-19 May 1945
* Sioux Falls AAF, South Dakota, June 1945
* Pratt AAF, Kansas, July 1945
* Clovis AAF, New Mexico, 13 Dec 1945
* Merced Army Airfield (Later Castle AFB), California, 21 June 1946
* Robins AFB, Georgia, 29 January 1996
* Moody AFB, Georgia, 29 January 2008

Weapons systems

*B-24 (1942-1945)
*B-29 (1945-1948)
*KB-29 (1950-1953)
*B-50 (1949-1954)
*KC-97 (1953-1957)
*B-47 (1954-1956)
*KC-135 (1957-1992)
*B-52B (1955-1965)
*B-52D (1956-1974)
*B-52E (1957-1970)
*B-52F (1958-1971)
*B-52G (1966-1994)
*E-8 Joint STARS (1996-2002)

Units

*90th Air Refueling Squadron: 18 Jan 1954-5 Aug 1955 (detached c. 3 Apr-18 May 1954 and 1 Apr-16 Jul 1955).
*93d Air Refueling Squadron: attached 15 Jul 1950-30 Jan 1951; attached 10 Feb 1951-15 Jun 1952, assigned 16 Jun 1952-1 Sep 1991 (detached c. 1 Apr-15 May 1954, 29 Jun-14 Aug 1954, 19 Jan-c. 15 Mar 1955, 18 Jun-c. 3 Jul 1955, 2 Nov 1955-5 Jan 1956, and 27 Sep-c. 24 Dec 1956).
*328th Bombardment Squadron attached 10 Feb 1951-15 Jun 1952, assigned 16 Jun 1952-1 Sep 1991.
*329th Bombardment Squadron (later, 329th Strategic Bombardment Training; 329th Combat Crew Training): attached 10 Feb 1951-15 Jun 1952, assigned 16 Jun 1952-30 Sep 1971; 1 Jul 1986-1 Sep 1991.
*330th Bombardment Squadron (later, 330th Combat Flight Instructor): attached 10 Feb 1951-15 Jun 1952, assigned 16 Jun 1952-15 Sep 1963; 24 Aug 1988-1 Sep 1991.
*340th Air Refueling Squadron: attached 20 Oct 1952-18 Jan 1954.
*341st Air Refueling Squadron: attached 11 Jun 1954-15 Aug 1955.
*924th Air Refueling Squadron: 1 Jul 1959-1 Sep 1991.
*4017th Combat Crew Training Squadron 1955-1956.
*820th Security Forces Group Jan 2008 -
*3d Air Support Operations Group (Fort Hood, TX): Jan 2008 -
*18th Air Support Operations Group (Pope AFB, NC: Jan 2008 -

See also

* Fifteenth Air Force

References

* Endicott, Judy G. (1999) Active Air Force wings as of 1 October 1995; USAF active flying, space, and missile squadrons as of 1 October 1995. Maxwell AFB, Alabama: Office of Air Force History. CD-ROM.
* Fletcher, Harry R. (1989) Air Force Bases Volume II, Active Air Force Bases outside the United States of America on 17 September 1982. Maxwell AFB, Alabama: Office of Air Force History. ISBN 0912799536
* Freeman, Roger A. (1978) Airfields of the Eighth: Then and Now. After the Battle ISBN 0900913096
* Freeman, Roger A. (1991) The Mighty Eighth The Colour Record. Cassell & Co. ISBN 0-304-35708-1
* Maurer, Maurer (1983). Air Force Combat Units Of World War II. Maxwell AFB, Alabama: Office of Air Force History. ISBN 0892010924.
* Mueller, Robert (1989). Volume 1: Active Air Force Bases Within the United States of America on 17 September 1982. USAF Reference Series, Office of Air Force History, United States Air Force, Washington, D.C. ISBN 0912799536; 0160022614
* Ravenstein, Charles A. (1984). Air Force Combat Wings Lineage and Honors Histories 1947-1977. Maxwell AFB, Alabama: Office of Air Force History. ISBN 0912799129.
* Rogers, Brian (2005). United States Air Force Unit Designations Since 1978. Hinkley, England: Midland Publications. ISBN 1-85780-197-0.
* [http://www.maxwell.af.mil/au/afhra/wwwroot/rso/wings_groups_pages/0093acwn.php Air Force Historical Research Agency]

External links

* [http://www.zianet.com/jpage/airforce/ Joe's USAF Blue Book]
* [http://afhra.maxwell.af.mil/ Air Force Historical Research Agency]


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