14th Bombardment Squadron

The 14th Bombardment Squadron was a squadron of the United States Army Air Forces. The 14th Bomb Squadron fought in the Battle of the Philippines (1941–42), much of its aircraft being destroyed in combat against the Japanese. The survivors of the ground echelon fought as infantry during Battle of Bataan and after their surrender, were subjected to the Bataan Death March, although some did escape to Australia. The remainder of the air echelon fought in the Dutch East Indies campaign (1942) before being reassigned to other units. The squadron was never remanned or equipped. It was carried as an active unit until April 2, 1946.

14th Bombardment Squadron
14th Bombardment Squadron B-17E
14th Bombardment Squadron B-17E, Clark Field, Philippines before the 8 December 1941 attack
Active1917–1946
(Not equipped or manned, May 1942 – April 2, 1946)
CountryUnited States
BranchUnited States Army Air Forces
RoleBombardment
Part ofFar East Air Force
EngagementsWorld War II
Battle of the Philippines
Insignia
14th Bombardment Squadron emblem
14th Bombardment Squadron - Emblem

History

The squadron operated as a flying training unit, 1917–1918. During the interwar years, it operated from Bolling Field, DC, 1928–1935. A C-2A transport of the squadron participated as the receiving aircraft ("Question Mark") in a week-long endurance flight testing the practicability of aerial refueling.

World War II

The 19th Bombardment Group had been selected for transfer to the Philippines; however, the need for B-17 bombers there was so urgent that a provisional group already in Hawaii was dispatched to Manila by way of Australia in September.[1] Under the command of Major Emmett O'Donnell, Jr., nine B-17s of the 14th Bombardment Squadron (Provisional), the nine crews made up of the cream of the 5th and 11th Bomb Groups, pioneered an air ferry route from Hawaii to the Philippines, leaving on September 5, 1941, and arriving on September 12, 1941, at Clark Field, Philippines. This was the first flight of land-based bombers across the central Pacific. A portion of the flight involved traversing uncharted waters from Wake Island to Port Moresby and Darwin and thence to Fort Stotsenburg, Philippines. They maintained radio silence over the Japanese mandate islands. Successful completion of this historic flight proved that the Philippines could be reinforced by air. For extraordinary achievement in this flight, the airmen of this squadron were awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross. The squadron became part of the Philippine Department Air Force, which subsequently became the Far East Air Force on November 16, 1941, and was attached to the 19th Bombardment Group (Heavy).

On December 8, 1941, the Japanese bombed and strafed Clark Field at 12:00 pm, catching many B-17’s and P-40’s on the ground, which were destroyed. Sixteen B-17s of the 14th Bombardment Squadron aircraft were based at Del Monte Field and San Marcelino Field and were spared being destroyed. Captain Colin P Kelly Jr, of the 14th Bombardment Squadron attacked the Japanese Navy heavy cruiser Ashigara, thought to be a battleship. Captain Kelly was killed when his B-17 was shot down by Japanese fighters as he was returning to Clark Field, and was posthumously awarded the Distinguished Service Cross (DSC).

The air echelon of the 14th Bombardment Squadron was evacuated to Batchelor Field, Australia on December 24, 1941, while the ground echelon stayed to fight at Clark Field, as infantry in the Philippines as part of the Battle of the Philippines under the command of 5th Interceptor Command. Orders were soon received from HQ Far East Air Force to move to Java, and the air echelon relocated from Batchelor Field to Singosari Field, Java on December 30, 1941.

The 19th Bombardment Group flew missions from Singosari Field, attacking enemy aircraft, ground installations, warships and transports during the later stages of the Battle of the Philippines and the Dutch East Indies campaign between January–March 1942. The group earned a total of four United States Presidential Distinguished Unit Citations for actions in the Philippine Islands and Dutch East Indies. The air echelon of 14th Bombardment Squadron ceased operating from Singosari, Java on March 1, 1942, and began moving to Melbourne, Australia. Arriving at Essendon Aerodrome, Melbourne on March 4, 1942, the air echelon of 14th Bombardment Squadron began operating from Essendon, Australia.

On March 14, 1942, the air echelon of 14th Bombardment Squadron was detached from the 19th Bombardment Group and ceased operations, with men and equipment transferred to other units. The 14th Bombardment Squadron continued as an active unit in the United States, but was not manned or equipped, and was inactivated on April 2, 1946.

Lineage

  • Organized as 1st Aviation School Squadron on May 9, 1917
Redesignated: 14th Aero Squadron (I) on August 20, 1917
Redesignated: Squadron A, Rockwell Field, Calif, on July 23, 1918
Demobilized on November 23, 1918
  • Reconstituted and consolidated (June 8, 1935) with Air Corps Detachment, Bolling Field, DC, which was organized on April 1, 1928
Redesignated: 14th Bombardment Squadron on March 1, 1935
Inactivated on September 1, 1936
  • Redesignated 14th Bombardment Squadron (Medium) on December 22, 1939
Activated on February 1, 1940
Redesignated: 14th Bombardment Squadron (Heavy) on November 20, 1940
Inactivated on April 2, 1946
Disbanded on August 19, 1949.

* Another 14th Aero Squadron was activated at Kelly Field, Texas, on 14 June 1917. It was re-designated as the 19th Aero Squadron on 26 June 1917. Today the squadron's lineage and history is held by the USAF 19th Fighter Squadron

Assignments

Attached to 19th Bombardment Group, 2-c. December 24, 1941
Air echelon attached to 19th Bombardment Group, C. December 24, 1941 – c. March 14, 1942
Ground echelon attached as infantry to the V Interceptor Command, c. December 24, 1941 – May 1942

Stations

Air echelon operated from: Batchelor Airfield, Australia, c. December 24–c. December 30, 1941
Air echelon operated from: Singosari Airport, Java, Netherlands East Indies, December 30, 1941–c. March 1, 1942
Air echelon operated from: Essendon Airport (Melbourne), Australia, c. March 4 – c. March 14, 1942

Aircraft

See also

Notes

 This article incorporates public domain material from the Air Force Historical Research Agency website http://www.afhra.af.mil/.

  1. ^ Matloff & 1953-59, p. 70.

References

  • Matloff, Maurice; Snell, Edwin M. (1953–59). The War Department: Strategic Planning For Coalition Warfare 1941-1942. United States Army In World War II. Washington, DC: Center Of Military History, United States Army. LCCN 53061477.
  • Maurer, Maurer, ed. (1982) [1969]. Combat Squadrons of the Air Force, World War II (PDF) (reprint ed.). Washington, DC: Office of Air Force History. ISBN 0-405-12194-6. LCCN 70605402. OCLC 72556.
  • 14th Bomb Squadron
11th Wing

The 11th Wing (11 WG) is a United States Air Force unit assigned to the Air Force District of Washington. It is stationed at Joint Base Andrews, Maryland where it is the host unit. The 11th Wing is one of the largest wings in the Air Force. It is known as “The Chief’s Own,” an honorific originally intended to reflect that the Chief of Staff of the United States Air Force personally created the organization.

The 11th Wing traces its roots back to the 11th Observation Group which was established on 1 October 1933, but not activated. The group was redesignated as the 11 Bombardment Group (Medium) on 1 January 1938, although not activated until 1 February 1940. Later that year it became a heavy bombardment unit. The group fought in combat in the Pacific Theater of Operations with Boeing B-17 Flying Fortresses and Consolidated B-24 Liberators. The 11th Bombardment Group earned a Navy Presidential Unit Citation for its actions in the South Pacific from 31 July to 30 November 1942. It participated in the Central Pacific; Air Offensive, Japan; Guadalcanal; Northern Solomons; Eastern Mandates; Western Pacific; Ryukyus and the China Offensive before its inactivation in 1948.

In 1978 the group was reactivated as the 11th Strategic Group, managing forward deployed Strategic Air Command (SAC) aircraft at RAF Fairford, England until 1990.

The 11th Bombardment Wing served with Strategic Air Command (SAC) during the Cold War, flying Convair B-36 Peacemakers, Boeing B-52 Stratofortresses Boeing KC-97 Stratotankers and Boeing KC-135 Stratotankers. It also had SM-65 Atlas missiles assigned during the early 1960s. In 1968 the wing became the 11th Air Refueling Wing, retaining only its tankers until it was inactivated in 1969. In 1982 the wing was consolidated with the 11th Strategic Group.

The consolidated unit has served in its current mission since 1994, first as the 11th Support Wing and then as the 11th Wing

The commander of the 11th Wing is Colonel E. John Teichert. Its Command Chief Master Sergeant is Chief Master Sergeant Nathaniel M. Perry, Jr..

19th Fighter Squadron

The 19th Fighter Squadron is part of the Pacific Air Forces' (PACAF) 15th Wing (15 WG) at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, Hawaii.

The squadron is one of the oldest in the United States Air Force, its origins dating to 14 June 1917, being organized at Kelly Field, Texas. It served overseas in France as part of the American Expeditionary Force during World War I. The squadron saw combat during World War II, and became part of the Tactical Air Command during the Cold War.

Today the 19th FS operates the F-22 Raptor aircraft conducting strategic attack, interdiction, offensive counterair (air-to-surface), suppression of enemy air defenses, as well as offensive and defensive counterair (air-to-air) missions.

19th Operations Group

The 19th Operations Group (19 OG) is the operational flying component of the United States Air Force 19th Airlift Wing, stationed at Little Rock Air Force Base, Arkansas. As of 31 July 2013, the 19th Operations Group Commander was Colonel Johnnie Martinez.

Equipped with the Lockheed C-130 Hercules, the group provides part of Air Mobility Command's Global Reach capability. Tasking requirements range from supplying humanitarian airlift relief to victims of disasters, to airdropping supplies and troops into the heart of contingency operations in hostile areas.

The 19 OG is one of the oldest organizations in the Air Force, being a successor organization of the 19th Bombardment Group, one of the 15 original combat air groups formed by the Army before World War II.

As part of the Far East Air Force, the unit was stationed at Clark Field in the Philippines when the Japanese attacked on 8 December 1941, suffering numerous casualties and losing most of its Boeing B-17 Flying Fortresses in the attack. A small number of its aircraft escaped to fly combat missions in the Philippines; Netherlands East Indies and Papua New Guinea during early 1942.

In March 1942, the group was re-established in Australia, as part of the Fifth Air Force. From far-flung bases in Queensland, the Northern Territory and Western Australia, the group carried out missions over Japanese-held areas in New Guinea and the Dutch East Indies.

After moving to Guam in 1944, the group was re-equipped with the Boeing B-29 Superfortress and conducted its first raid with B-29s on 25 February 1945, against Tokyo.

The group has earned the distinction of being one of the most decorated units in the Air Force. Unit honors include nine Presidential Unit Citations, two Air Force Meritorious Unit Awards, ten Air Force Outstanding Unit Awards, one Philippine Presidential Unit Citation, and one Republic of Korea Presidential Unit Citation.

5th Interceptor Command

The 5th Interceptor Command (Provisional) was a temporary command organization of the United States Army Air Forces. It was wiped out in the Battle of the Philippines (1941–42). The survivors fought as infantry during Battle of Bataan and after their surrender, were subjected to the Bataan Death March, although some did escape to Australia.

7th Operations Group

The 7th Operations Group is the operational flying component of the United States Air Force 7th Bomb Wing, stationed at Dyess Air Force Base, Texas. The 7th Operations Group currently flies the B-1 Lancer.

The 7th Operations Group is a direct successor organization of the 7th Bombardment Group, one of the 15 original combat air groups formed by the United States Army before World War II.

Activated in 1921, it inherited the lineage of the 1st Army Observation Group, which was established and organized, on 6 September 1918. The 7th Bombardment Group was deploying to the Philippines when the Imperial Japanese Navy Air Service attacked Pearl Harbor on 7 December 1941. Six of the group's B-17 Flying Fortress aircraft which had left Hamilton Field, California on 6 December 1941 reached Hawaii during the enemy attack, but were able to land safely. The unit later served in India during World War II.

In the postwar era, the 7d Bombardment Group was one of the first USAAF units assigned to the Strategic Air Command on 1 October 1946, prior to the establishment of the United States Air Force. Equipped with low-hour B-29 Superfortress surplus World War II aircraft, the group was inactivated in 1952 when the parent wing adopted the Tri-Deputate organization and assigned all of the groups squadrons directly to the wing.

Reactivated as the 7th Operations Group in 1991 when the 7th Bomb Wing adopted the USAF Objective organization plan.

9th Operations Group

The 9th Operations Group is the operational flying component of the 9th Reconnaissance Wing, stationed at Beale Air Force Base, California.

The 9th OG's mission is to organize, train and equip Lockheed U-2R, RQ-4 Global Hawk and MC-12W Liberty combat elements for peacetime intelligence gathering, contingency operations, conventional war fighting and Emergency War Order support.

It is a descendant organization of the 9th Group (Observation), one of the 15 original combat air groups formed by the Army before World War II. It is the fourth oldest active group in the USAF, and the seventh created following the establishment of the U.S. Air Service. During World War II, the 9th Bombardment Group, Very Heavy was a B-29 Superfortress group assigned to Twentieth Air Force flying bombardment operations against Japan. Its aircraft were identified by a "X" inside a Circle painted on the tail.

B-17 Flying Fortress units of the United States Army Air Forces

This is a list of United States Army Air Forces B-17 Flying Fortress units of the United States Army Air Forces including variants and other historical information. Heavy bomber training organizations primarily under II Bomber Command in the United States and non-combat units are not included.

The B-17 Flying Fortress was perhaps the most well-known American heavy bomber of the Second World War (1939/41-1945), . It achieved a fame far beyond that of its more-numerous contemporary, the Consolidated B-24 Liberator. The first pre-production Y1B-17 Fortress was delivered to the 2d Bombardment Group, Langley Field, Virginia on 11 January 1936; the first production B-17B was delivered on 29 March 1939 also to the 2nd Bombardment Group. A total of 12,677 production Fortresses was built before production came to an end. In August 1944, the Boeing B-17 equipped no less than 33 overseas combat groups.

The last Boeing-built B-17G was delivered to the USAAF on 13 April 1945. Following the end of World War II, the Flying Fortress was rapidly withdrawn from USAAF service, being replaced by the B-29 Superfortress. Literally thousands of Fortresses used in combat in Europe by Eighth or Fifteenth Air Force or in the United States by II Bomber Command training units were flown to various disposal units. A few were sold to private owners, but the vast majority were cut up for scrap

Aircraft in the final early 1945 production manufacturing block by Boeing or Lockheed-Vega (Block 110) were converted to the B-17H search and rescue model, being modified to carry a lifeboat under the fuselage. Postwar B-17s were used by the Military Air Transport Service Air Rescue Service, in 1948 being re-designated SB-17G. Some RB-17Gs were also used by the MATS Air Photographic and Charting Service (APCS). A few SB-17s were used by the Air Rescue Service in Japan during the Korean War (1950-1953), but all of the postwar B-17s were retired from MATS by the mid-1950s, becoming Air Proving Ground Command QB-17 Drones or DB-17 Drone directors. The drones were operated primarily by the 3205th Drone Group, Eglin AFB, Florida.

The last operational USAF B-17 mission was on 6 August 1959, when DB-17P 44-83684 (Originally a Douglas/Long Beach B-17G-90-DL) directed QB-17G 44-83717 which was expended as a target for an AIM-4 Falcon air-to-air missile fired from an F-101 Voodoo, near Holloman AFB, New Mexico. 44-83684 arrived at Davis-Monthan AFB for storage a few days later. The few DB-17P remaining operational drone controllers remaining on Air Force rolls afterward were transferred to various museums in 1960.

Bombing of Darwin

The Bombing of Darwin, also known as the Battle of Darwin, on 19 February 1942 was the largest single attack ever mounted by a foreign power on Australia. On that day, 242 Japanese aircraft, in two separate raids, attacked the town, ships in Darwin's harbour and the town's two airfields in an attempt to prevent the Allies from using them as bases to contest the invasion of Timor and Java during World War II.

Darwin was lightly defended relative to the size of the attack, and the Japanese inflicted heavy losses upon Allied forces at little cost to themselves. The urban areas of Darwin also suffered some damage from the raids and there were a number of civilian casualties. More than half of Darwin's civilian population left the area permanently, before or immediately after the attack.

The two Japanese air raids were the first, and largest, of more than 100 air raids against Australia during 1942–43.

Clayton Lawrence Bissell

Major General Clayton Lawrence Bissell (July 29, 1896 – December 24, 1972) was an air officer in the United States Army and United States Army Air Forces during World War I and World War II.

Emmett O'Donnell Jr.

General Emmett E. "Rosie" O'Donnell Jr. (September 15, 1906 – December 26, 1971) was a United States Air Force four-star general who served as Commander in Chief, Pacific Air Forces (CINCPACAF) from 1959 to 1963. He also led the first B-29 Superfortress attack against Tokyo during World War II.

Far East Air Force (United States)

The Far East Air Force (FEAF) was the military aviation organization of the United States Army in the Philippines just prior to and at the beginning of World War II. Formed on 16 November 1941, FEAF was the predecessor of the Fifth Air Force of the United States Army Air Forces and the United States Air Force.

Initially the Far East Air Force also included aircraft and personnel of the Philippine Army Air Corps. Outnumbered operationally more than three-to-one by aircraft of the Japanese Navy and Army, FEAF was largely destroyed during the Philippines Campaign of 1941–42. When 14 surviving B-17 Flying Fortresses and 143 personnel of the heavy bombardment force were withdrawn from Mindanao to Darwin, Australia in the third week of December 1941, Headquarters FEAF followed it within days. The B-17s were the only combat aircraft of the FEAF to escape capture or destruction.FEAF, with only 16 Curtiss P-40s and 4 Seversky P-35 fighters remaining of its original combat force, was broken up as an air organization and moved by units into Bataan 24–25 December. 49 of the original 165 pursuit pilots of FEAF's 24th Pursuit Group were also evacuated during the campaign, but of non-flying personnel, only one of 27 officers and 16 wounded enlisted men escaped the Philippines. Nearly all ground and flying personnel were employed as infantry at some point during their time on Bataan, where most surrendered on 9 April 1942.The surviving personnel and a small number of aircraft received from the United States were re-organized in Australia in January 1942, and on 5 February 1942 redesignated as "5 Air Force". With most of its aircraft based in Java, the FEAF was nearly destroyed a second time trying to stem the tide of Japanese advances southward.

Fifth Air Force

The Fifth Air Force (5 AF) is a numbered air force of the United States Air Force Pacific Air Forces (PACAF). It is headquartered at Yokota Air Base, Japan. It is the U.S. Air Force's oldest continuously serving Numbered Air Force. The organization has provided 70 years of continuous air power to the Pacific since its establishment in September 1941.Fifth Air Force is the Headquarters Pacific Air Forces forward element in Japan, and maximizes partnership capabilities and promotes bilateral defense cooperation. In addition, 5 AF is the air component to United States Forces Japan.Its mission is three-fold. First, it plans, conducts, controls, and coordinates air operations assigned by the PACAF Commander. Fifth Air Force maintains a level of readiness necessary for successful completion of directed military operations. And last, but certainly not least, Fifth Air Force assists in the mutual defense of Japan and enhances regional stability by planning, exercising, and executing joint air operations in partnership with Japan. To achieve this mission, Fifth Air Force maintains its deterrent force posture to protect both U.S. and Japanese interests, and conducts appropriate air operations should deterrence fail.Fifth Air Force is commanded by Lieutenant General Kevin B. Schneider.

Harold L. George

Not to be confused with Harold Huston George for whom George Air Force Base was namedHarold Lee George (July 19, 1893 – February 24, 1986) was an American aviation pioneer who helped shape and promote the concept of daylight precision bombing. An outspoken proponent of the industrial web theory, George taught at the Air Corps Tactical School and influenced a significant group of airmen passing through the school, ones who had powerful influence during and after World War II. He has been described as the leader of the Bomber Mafia, the men who advocated an independent military arm composed of heavy bombers. George helped shape America's bomber strategy for the war by assisting Air War Plans Division with the development of a complete aircraft production and bombing strategy.

In 1934, George helped institute the Order of Daedalians, and served as that organization's first Wing Commander.During World War II, George led the Air Transport Command, taking it from 130 obsolescent aircraft to 3,000 modern transports, operated by 300,000 airmen. Following the war, he helped Hughes Aircraft become a very profitable company, and was twice elected mayor of Beverly Hills, California.

Hickam Air Force Base

Hickam Air Force Base is a United States Air Force installation, named in honor of aviation pioneer Lieutenant Colonel Horace Meek Hickam. The base merged with the Naval Station Pearl Harbor to become part of the Joint Base Pearl Harbor–Hickam. The base neighbors Honolulu International Airport and currently shares runways with the airport for its activities and purposes.

List of military units of Clark Air Base

For a detailed chronological history, see the article History of Clark Air Base.Military units of Clark Air Base consisted primarily of United States Army and United States Air Force organizations.

Seversky SEV-3

The Seversky SEV-3 was an American three-seat amphibian monoplane, the first aircraft designed and built by the Seversky Aircraft Corporation.

The Swoose

The Swoose is a B-17D-BO Flying Fortress, USAAF Ser. No. 40-3097, that saw extensive use in the Southwest Pacific theatre of World War II and survived to become the oldest B-17 still intact. It is the only early "shark fin" B-17 known to exist, and the only surviving B-17 to have seen action in the 1941–42 Philippines Campaign, operating on the first day of the United States entry into the war.

United States Army Air Forces in Australia

During World War II, the United States Army Air Forces established a series of airfields in Australia for the collective defense of the country, as well as for conducting offensive operations against the Imperial Japanese Army and Navy. It was from these airports and airfields in Australia, that the Fifth Air Force was able to regroup, re-equip and begin offensive operations against the Empire of Japan after the disasters in the Philippines and Dutch East Indies during 1942.

United States Army Air Forces in the South West Pacific Theatre

During World War II, the United States Army Air Forces engaged in combat against the air, ground and naval forces of the Empire of Japan in the South West Pacific Theatre.

As defined by the United States Department of War, the South West Pacific theatre included the Philippines, the Dutch East Indies (excluding Sumatra), Borneo, Australia, the Australian Territory of New Guinea (including the Bismarck Archipelago), the western part of the Solomon Islands and some neighbouring territories. The theatre took its name from the major Allied command, which was known simply as the "South West Pacific Area".

The major USAAF combat organizations in the region was Fifth Air Force, based in Australia after the Battle of the Philippines (1941–42). From Australia, the Allied forces, led by General Douglas MacArthur, first moved north into New Guinea in 1942, then into the Netherlands East Indies in 1943, and returning to the Philippines in 1944 and 1945. Moving with the Allied ground forces, the USAAF Fifth Air Force established a series of airfields, some at existing facilities, but most were carved out of the jungle to provide tactical air support of the ground forces.

In addition to the Fifth Air Force units, elements of Seventh and Thirteenth Air Force advanced into the theatre as Japanese land and naval forces were driven out of the Central and South Pacific Areas.

Airfields
Units

This page is based on a Wikipedia article written by authors (here).
Text is available under the CC BY-SA 3.0 license; additional terms may apply.
Images, videos and audio are available under their respective licenses.