90th Fighter Squadron

The 90th Fighter Squadron is a squadron of the United States Air Force. It is assigned to the 3d Operations Group, 3d Wing, Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska, Pacific Air Forces. The squadron is equipped with the F-22 Raptor Fighter.[1]

The 90 FS is one of the oldest units in the United States Air Force, first being organized as the 90th Aero Squadron on 20 August 1917 at Kelly Field, Texas. The squadron deployed to France and fought on the Western Front during World War I as a Corps observation squadron.[2]

During World War II, the unit earned the Distinguished Unit Citation and the Presidential Unit Citation for its services in the Pacific Theater of Operations (PTO) as part of Fifth Air Force. During the Cold War the squadron fought in the Korean War and Vietnam War.[3]

90th Fighter Squadron
90th Fighter Squadron - F-22s
U.S. Air Force F-22 Raptors assigned to the 90th Fighter Squadron
Active20 August 1917 – 1 October 1949
25 June 1951 – present
Country United States
Branch United States Air Force
RoleAir Superiority
SizeSquadron
Part ofPacific Air Forces.png  Pacific Air Forces
Garrison/HQJoint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska
Nickname(s)The Dicemen
ColorsRed
Fuselage Code"AK"
Engagements
  • World War I War Service Streamer without inscription

    World War I
  • WW II American Campaign (Antisubmarine) Streamer

    World War II - Antisubmarine
  • Asiatic-Pacific Streamer

    World War II - Asia-Pacific Theater
  • Korean Service Medal - Streamer

    Korean War
  • Vietnam Service Streamer

    Vietnam War
  • Streamer AFE

    Vietnam Ceasefire
  • Streamer AFE

    Operation Deny Flight
    Operation Joint Endeavor
    Operation Northern Watch,
  • Streamer AFGCS

    Afghanistan Campaign
Decorations
  • Streamer PUC Army

    Distinguished Unit Citation (8x)
  • AFOUA with Valor

    Air Force Outstanding Unit Award with Combat "V" Device (5x)
  • US Air Force Outstanding Unit Award - Stremer

    Air Force Outstanding Unit Award (18x)
  • Presidential Unit Citation (Philippines) Streamer

    Philippine Presidential Unit Citation
  • Vietnam Gallantry Cross - Streamer

    Republic of Vietnam Gallantry Cross with Palm
Commanders
Current
commander
Lt Col Ryan "Rase" Graf
Notable
commanders
Hoyt S. Vandenberg
Nathan F. Twining
Richard H. Ellis
Insignia
90th Fighter Squadron Emblem
90 FS

Mission

The 90th Fighter Squadron trains in the fighter missions of offensive counter-air (OCA), defensive counter-air (DCA) and suppression of enemy air defenses (SEAD), as well as strategic attack and interdiction.[4]

History

World War I

see 90th Aero Squadron for an expanded history of World War I operations

The 90th Fighter Squadron origins begin with Special Order 104, Headquarters Kelly Field, San Antonio, Texas, on 25 September 1917. The men in it were largely from two detachments; one from Vancouver Barracks, Washington, which arrived at Kelly Field on 18 August; another from Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, which arrived on 25 August. Both of these detachments had been held from the date of their arrival until 25 September under Recruit Camp Headquarters as a Provisional Squadron.[4]

The first few months of its existence were consumed by the necessary training to prepare the men for operations in France during World War I. On 30 September, the squadron left Kelly Field for the Aviation Concentration Center, Camp Mills, Garden City, New York, Long Island, where it arrived five days later. On the night of 5 October the Squadron detrained, and early next morning hiked out to Field No. 2 of the Aviation Concentration Center (Hazelhurst Field), where they were quartered with the Headquarters of the First Provisional Wing in Barracks No. 5. Here they stayed for several weeks performing guard duty and fatigue work, and carrying on the work of organization, equipment and preparation for overseas duty.[5]

On 26 October, orders were received to pack up equipment and to prepare for immediate overseas departure. The following day the Squadron was moved to Pier 54, New York Harbor, and boarded the SS Orduña. The crossing of the Atlantic was uneventful, and on 10 November the Orduna moved into the dock at Liverpool, England.[5]

90th Aero Squadron - Salmson 2A2
90th Aero Squadron – Salmson 2A2

On 12 November 1917, the men of the 90th arrived at Le Havre, France. Boarding the famous "Hommes 40, Chevaux 8" railroad box cars (maximum capacity of 40 men or eight horses,) they were shipped to Colombey-les-Belles Airdrome for what they thought would be immediate deployment to the front. But, to their great disappointment, they were given the assignment of road and barracks construction work, building the large 1st Air Depot and staging area which would eventually process and equip a large number of Americans that would arrive in France during 1918.[4]

After seven months at Colombey, the 90th Aero Squadron was designed as a Corps Observation squadron, being assigned to the III Corps Observation Group on 11 June 1918. Two days later it reached what was called the "Zone of Advance" (combat area) at Ourches Aerodrome. The squadron's first aircraft were the Sopwith 1½ Strutter ground attack aircraft.[1][6] At Ourches, the 90th and other squadrons were engaged in combat operations, both in aerial combat and aerial reconnaissance photography. It took part in operations in the Toul Sector, the Battle of Saint-Mihiel and the first and second Meuse-Argonne Offensives. Later, the squadron upgraded to Salmson 2-A2s SPAD Xis, and Breguet BR-14 observation aircraft. Due to ever-present low clouds and rain, the flyers were forced to drop dangerously close to the ground to carry out their missions, usually in the worst conditions.[5]

90th Aero Squadron - Emblem
90th Aero Squadron "Lucky 7 dice emblem"

The 90th Aero Squadron carried out many reconnaissances, engaged in 23 combats and relieved official confirmation for 7 aerial victories. The group’s lucky "Seven Up" emblem of red dice with white dots reading "7" no matter which way it was tallied, proved prophetic, for they suffered 3 casualties, consisting of 2 killed and 1 wounded.[5] In September 1918, it participated in the final allied offensives. The 90th earned a positive reputation for its ground attack missions during its continuous participation in the air offensive over Saint-Mihiel. Its first commander, First Lieutenant William G. Schauffler, designed the 90th's Pair o' Dice emblem displaying natural sevens during this campaign.[4]

Following the Armistice with Germany on 11 November 1918, little flying was done, most of the pilots and observers being absent on leave or returning to the States. On 15 January 1919 the squadron's planes were turned in to the 1st Air Depot, Colombey-les-Belles Airdrome, and there, practically all of the pilots and observers were detached from the Squadron.[5]

90th Aero Squadron 11-11-1918
90th Aero Squadron – 11:00am 11 November 1918 Bethelainville Aerodrome, France.

At Colombey, very comfortable quarters were assigned and the Squadron settled down to await orders to the coast. The Squadron left Colombey les Belles 25 January 1919, en route for the Port of Embarkation. It stopped at the pretty little village of St. Denis de Piles, near Libourne, Gironde, and the officers and enlisted personnel occupied excellent billets.[5]

On 3 February after five days spent at St. Denis, the Squadron was ordered to Libourne, the next step on the way home. There the men occupied the old stone French barracks, while the officers were billeted at private houses throughout the town. The Squadron remained at Libourne until 10 April, when the long-awaited order to proceed to the Embarkation Camp. After two or three disappointments the men were ordered on board the USS General G. W. Goethals (ID-1443). Officers were detached, and sailed the same day, 20 April, Easter Sunday, on board the USS Susquehanna (ID-3016). The voyage was very uneventful Land was finally sighted at 5 a.m. 3 May, and the squadron docked in Hoboken, New Jersey at 10 a.m., after a voyage of thirteen days. On 4 May at 8 a.m., the Squadron marched over to Field No. 2, Garden City (Mitchell Field), and the work of demobilizing the squadron was begun.[5]

After the war, 90th alumni commissioned Tiffany's of New York to design a silver pin with the squadron logo.[4]

Inter-War Period

90th Squadron DH-4
De Havilland DH-4 bomber with members of the 90th Squadron (Surveillance) at Sanderson Field, Texas, ca 1920.
see also: United States Army Border Air Patrol

After returning from France, most of the squadron demobilized at Mitchell Field and returned to civilian life. A small cadre of the unit remained in the Air Service, and were sent back to Kelly Field, Texas. At Kelly, the 90th, along with the 8th, 12th and 13th Aero Squadrons were formed into the Army Surveillance Group on 1 July 1919. The group was redesignated the 3d Attack Group on 2 July 1921.[4]

The mission of the Army Surveillance Group was to carry out observation overflights along the Mexican Border. During this period, Mexico was enduring a period of revolution and unrest, which led to border violations and the deaths of American citizens. From Kelly Field, the squadron was divided into two flights, Flight A operated from Eagle Pass Field, while Flight B operated from Kelly Field. Both flights were equipped with American-built deHavilland DH-4 aircraft, which were designed as bombers during the war.[4]

90th Attack Squadron - Curtiss A-12 Shrike
90th Attack Squadron – Curtiss A-12 Shrike, 1933

During the late summer of 1919, the 464th Aero Construction Squadron had been sent to establish an Army airfield at Sanderson, Texas. By November, enough construction had been completed at Sanderson Field that the squadron moved from Kelly to operate from the new airfield, while the detachment at Eagle Pass Field continued operations. The detachment moved from Eagle Pass to Del Rio Field, Texas, on 12 Jun 1920.[4]

As the unrest in Mexico died down by the middle of 1921, the 90th reunited and moved back to Kelly Field in July. At Kelly Field, Brigadier General William 'Billy' Mitchell, a senior staff officer in the Army Air Service, decided to use this low-level flying experience and the World War I experience of the 3d Group's pilots to create a group devoted to low-level mission of supporting ground troops and attacking ground targets.[4]

3dwing-a-17a
Northrop A-17A Serial 36-207 at the National Museum of the United States Air Force. It was assigned to the 90th Attack Squadron. It is the only A-17A known to exist.

Flew border reconnaissance missions from Fort Huachuca, Arizona, during the Escobar-Topete Revolution 7 April–2 May 1929. The 90th Squadron contributed to the pioneering of new tactics for attack aircraft, delivered US mail in 1934, participated in aerial mapping missions during the 1930s, and attracted significant talent among early military airmen. One example of these early airmen was General James H. Doolittle. On 2 September 1922, General Doolittle, then a first lieutenant, became the first pilot to travel coast-to-coast in under 24 hours. Although he could not remember if he was assigned to the 90th during the flight, the Air Force Historical Research Agency confirmed he was a member of the 90th at the time, and his DH-4 aircraft displayed the 90th's pair-o-dice emblem. Early commanders of the 90th also included Lieutenants Hoyt Vandenberg and Nathan Twining, both of whom later became Air Force Chiefs of Staff.[4] Transferred on 27 February 1935 to Barksdale Field, Louisiana, then transferred on 10 October 1940 to Savannah AAF, Georgia.

B-25C 90 BS
North American B-25C Mitchell of the 90th BS, 3rd BG(L) USAAF, Dobodura Airfield 1943

World War II

During World War II, the 90th, now a bombardment squadron, operated in the South Pacific, flying Douglas A-20 Havoc and North American B-25 Mitchell aircraft. Their main mission involved highly-dangerous skip bombings. In an effort to improve the effectiveness and protection of the 3d Bombardment Group's pilots, Major Paul 'Pappy' Gunn, 3d Bombardment Group engineering officer, devised a modification of the B-25C. The modification replaced the forward bombardier with four forwards firing .50 caliber machine guns, supplemented with two twin .50 caliber gun packages side mounted on the fuselage. The lower turret was discarded. The A-20s received similar modifications. The modified aircraft were first employed by the 90th and proved exceptionally effective, receiving the nickname 'commerce destroyers.' During the Battle of the Bismarck Sea, every aircraft in the 90th scored a hit on the Japanese convoy of 18 ships. It was the first sea-level attack by B-25 strafers in World War II and demonstrated that this tactic was extremely effective. The squadron also participated in the raids on Wewak, New Guinea, which were preemptive strikes that virtually ended the threat of enemy offensive air capabilities.[4]

Cold War

3dbg-b-26-44-34306
3d Bomb Wing B-26B-50-DL Invaders during the Korean War. Serial 44-34306 identifiable.

In 1945, after World War II, the 90th Squadron was moved to Japan. The 90th began flying the Douglas A-26 Invader as the 3d Bombardment Group became an all A-26 outfit. In September 1946, the 90th moved with the 3d Bombardment Group to Yokota Air Base, Japan, and began training to become combat-ready with the A-26, which was redesignated the B-26 Invader. With the creation of the U.S. Air Force in late 1947, the force began an internal reorganization. This led to the activation of the 3d Bombardment Wing in August 1948, to which the 3d Bombardment Group was assigned. The 90th Squadron was inactivated from 1 October 1949 until 25 June 1951.[4]

At that point, the squadron was redesignated the 90th Bombardment Squadron Light, Night Intruder. In July, as part of the 3d Bombardment Group, the 90th participated in the Korean War. The B-26 Invaders, which the 90th flew, had as many as 12 forward firing .50 caliber machine guns. The 90th's specialty during the Korean War was destroying locomotives and marshalling yards.[4]

B-57b-3dbw-japan
Martin B-57B-MA Serial 53-3896 of the 3d Bomb Wing.

After the war, the 90th moved with the 3d Bombardment Group to Johnson Air Base, Japan, on 1 October 1954. In January 1956, the unit transitioned to the B-57C Night Intruder. In October 1957, the 3d Bombardment Group inactivated and its heritage transferred to the 3d Bombardment Wing, as did the 90th Bombardment Squadron. In 1960, the wing and squadron transferred to Yokota Air Base, where it trained in bombardment, reconnaissance, and air refueling. It also served nuclear alert during this period as well. In the mid-1960s, however, the squadron underwent significant changes.[4]

In 1964, the 3d Bombardment Wing converted to a tactical fighter wing, as did the 90th, which became the 90th Tactical Fighter Squadron on 8 June 1964. The wing and the 90th moved to England Air Force Base, Louisiana, as part of an overall reorganization to reduce the number of wings located in Japan. While at England, the 90th gained the North American F-100 Super Sabre. At the beginning of the Vietnam War, the 3d Bombardment Wing began deploying units to Vietnam on a rotational basis, while the remainder continued training in their ground support role. In November 1965, the wing moved to Bien Hoa Air Base, South Vietnam, during the buildup of forces. The 90th flew close air support missions from Bien Hoa through tens of thousands of sorties. In 1969, the 90th Tactical Fighter Squadron reverted to its pre-World War II designation of 90th Attack Squadron. On 31 October 1970, the 3d Tactical Fighter Wing ended its duties in Vietnam and remained active in 'paper' status until it moved to Kunsan Air Base, South Korea, in March 1971. The 90th Attack Squadron was reassigned to the 14th Special Operations Wing on 31 October 1970 and was redesignated the 90th Special Operations Squadron and remained in Vietnam at Nha Trang Air Base.[4]

90th TFS North American F-100D-90-NA Super Sabre 56-3304 1967
90th TFS North American F-100D-90-NA Super Sabre 56-3304 Bien Hoa Air Base, South Vietnam, 1967

From late 1970 until 1974, the 90th underwent several command reassignments. It remained with the 14th Special Operations Wing until 1 September 1971, when it moved to the 483d Tactical Fighter Wing and remained at Nha Trang Air Base. On 15 April 1972, the 90th moved again, this time to the 18th Tactical Fighter Wing at Kadena Air Base, Okinawa, Japan. This assignment lasted only a few months, as the unit was assigned to the 405th Fighter Wing in December 1972 and moved to Clark Air Base, Philippines. The squadron was redesignated the 90th Tactical Fighter Squadron on 8 July 1973, and began to fly McDonnell F-4 Phantom IIs. In September of the following year, the 90th returned once again to the 3d Tactical Fighter Wing, when it relocated to Clark Air Base after the 405th Fighter Wing was inactivated. In 1975, the 90th converted to the F-4E and participated in combat training and providing air defense for the Philippines.[4]

F-4g-69-0275-pn-90tfs-3tfw-clark-1979
McDonnell Douglas F-4G-42-MC Phantom Serial 69-0275 of the 90th TFS/3d TFW Clark AFB, Philippines, 1979.

In July 1977, the 90th once again upgraded its aircraft, this time to the F-4G, which performed a ground radar suppression and destruction mission. The squadron had both F-4G and F-4E aircraft assigned, operating in "hunter-killer" roles. Each F-4G was paired with an F-4E during each mission, and the G models would point out threat radar sites to the E models for attack, as well as attacking using their own armaments. This multiplied the force being applied without having to purchase more of the expensive G models. During the late 1970s and 1980s, the squadron provided training and support to other units throughout the Pacific, as well as ensuring the readiness of its own pilots and aircraft. The unit participated in numerous Cope Thunder exercises hosted at Clark AB, as well as Pitch Black in Darwin, Australia, and other exercises in South Korea. By 1990, however, the Philippines had expressed a desire for the withdrawal of American military forces in the islands. In May 1991, the 90th Tactical Fighter Squadron was reassigned to the 21st Tactical Fighter Wing located at Elmendorf Air Force Base, Alaska. In September 1991, the 90th was redesignated the 90th Fighter Squadron and became part of the 21st Operations Group. This association did not last long, however.[4]

Post-Cold War

PEF 1991
"Philippine Expeditionary Force" back home at Clark AB, RP before Mount Pinatubo eruption.

In June 1991, Mount Pinatubo erupted in the Philippines and the Air Force quickly decided to evacuate its personnel and equipment from Clark AB. The 3d Tactical Fighter Wing remained in the Philippines during Desert Shield and Desert Storm due to instability in the Philippines. However, it was not going to remain in the islands for very long. It became a 'paper' unit briefly while the Chief of Staff, General Merrill McPeak, decided where to send the wing. He selected Elmendorf. The 21st Tactical Fighter Wing was inactivated and the 3d Wing replaced it as the lead wing at Elmendorf on 19 December 1991. With the establishment of the 3d Wing on Elmendorf, the 90th Fighter Squadron was once again reunited with its old wing.[4]

While these changes occurred with the 3d Wing, the 90th Fighter Squadron deployed six F-4G crews to join other Wild Weasel squadrons and coalition forces in Sheikh Isa, Bahrain for the Gulf War.[7] The six crews were attached to the 81st Tactical Fighter Squadron and were known as the Philippine Expeditionary Force (PEF). During combat operations, PEF crews destroyed multiple Iraqi SAM sites. This was the last combat deployment for the 90th while operating F-4Gs. Upon relocating to Elmendorf, the unit gained a new aircraft, the McDonnell Douglas F-15E Strike Eagle. This two-seat dual role updated version of the F-15C Eagle had more survivability enhancements than any other fighter aircraft at the time. It carried a wide array of armament as it performed both air-to-air and air-to-surface attack missions.[4]

F-15E-el-4
A 90th FS F-15E Strike Eagle flies over glacial fields during a training mission.

Since arriving in Alaska, the 90th Fighter Squadron participated in numerous training exercises in the lower 48 states and other areas of the world. These training exercises included Polar Thrust, Cope Thunder, Tandem Thrust, Cope Thaw, and Red Flag in locations such as Mountain Home Air Force Base, Idaho, Osan Air Base, Korea, Andersen Air Force Base, Guam, Naval Air Station Fallon, Nevada, and Nellis Air Force Base, Nevada. The squadron also developed a reputation for safety in its training. On 20 February 1996, the squadron received the Alaska Governor's Safety Award conferred through the Alaska Department of Labor. This was the first time a military organization won the state award since its inception in 1980.[4]

In addition to exercises, the 90th Fighter Squadron also undertook real-world deployments during the 1990s and early 2000s (decade). From October 1995 until January 1996, the squadron deployed 8 F-15Es and 193 personnel to Aviano Air Base, Italy in support of Operation Deny Flight and Operation Joint Endeavor. In February 1998, the squadron deployed 18 F-15Es and over 200 personnel to Kwangju Air Base and Taegu Air Base, both in Korea. While there, the unit flew 1200 joint combat training sorties. Personnel and aircraft redeployed in June 1998.[4]

In 2001 the 90th began a series of deployments which took members of the squadron to the Middle East and Southwest Asia. In March of that year, the 90th participated in a 90-day deployment in support of Operation Northern Watch, patrolling the northern No-fly zone in Iraq. The squadron sent 154 personnel and 10 F-15Es to Incirlik Air Base, Turkey and returned to Elmendorf on 9 June 2001. Later that year, in October, 18 F-15Es were deployed to Kwangju Air Base, Korea, in support of Afghanistan operations. While deployed pilots flew practice strike missions and provided long-range interdiction strike capability in the region during the absence of the USS Kitty Hawk (CV-63), they also flew missions over South Korea and repaired base infrastructure while there. The squadron redeployed from 20–23 December.[4]

F-22-el-1
The first of 40 F-22A Raptors at Elmendorf. The aircraft is flown and maintained by the active-duty Air Force's 90th Fighter Squadron and Air Force Reserve 302d Fighter Squadron.

The 90th Fighter Squadron participated in an historic event on 4 September 2002. Two Royal Australian Air Force exchange officers, Flight Lieutenant Paul Simmons and Flight Lieutenant Tony Southwood, paired up to fly one of the 90th's F-15Es. This was the first time Australian pilots flew an American aircraft in the Pacific Theatre.[4]

In 2003 the squadron undertook another deployment in the Pacific in support of Operation Enduring Freedom. The 90th sent 18 F-15Es to bases in the Pacific, including Osan Air Base, Kunsan Air Base, (both in Korea), Kadena Air Base, Japan and Andersen Air Force Base, Guam. The deployment included 592 personnel from mid-February until mid-May.[4]

Kwangju AB, Korea, once again became home to members of the 90th Fighter Squadron in 2004. In August the squadron deployed 12 F-15Es in a rotation. The unit was temporarily designated the 90th Expeditionary Fighter Squadron and assigned to the 3d Air Expeditionary Group. While deployed the unit flew more than 1100 sorties over the Korean Peninsula and provided two important flights to distinguished visitors, Republic of Korea Air Force Brigadier General Ko and Republic of Korea General Kim, Commander Korean Ground Forces.[4]

In 2005, the squadron focused on training and preparation for their next real-world deployment. Amidst the training and exercises, however, the squadron was able to showcase their talent with participation in the Aero India Airshow and with a flyby at the United States Air Force Academy before the Air Force-Army football game. Additionally, the F-15Es completed an upgrade of their weapons systems. This upgrade allowed the aircraft to carry and use more advanced weaponry, including the Joint Direct Attack Munition and eventually the Small Diameter Bomb.[4]

As 2006 progressed, the 90th Fighter Squadron began to prepare for significant changes in its mission and weapons system. The F-15Es were scheduled to relocate to Mountain Home Air Force Base, Idaho, through the BRAC decisions in 2005. Replacing those F-15Es, the 90th began receiving the advanced F-22 Raptor in August 2007, which greatly enhanced the 90th Fighter Squadron's ability to perform its duties.[4]

Lineage

  • Organized as the 90th Aero Squadron on 20 August 1917
Redesignated 90th Aero Squadron (Corps Observation) on 19 April 1918
Redesignated 90th Aero Squadron in May 1919
Redesignated 90th Squadron (Surveillance) on 13 August 1919
Redesignated 90th Squadron (Attack) on 15 September 1921
Redesignated 90th Attack Squadron on 25 January 1923
Redesignated 90th Bombardment Squadron (Light) on 15 September 1939
Redesignated 90th Bombardment Squadron (Dive) on 28 September 1942
Redesignated 90th Bombardment Squadron (Light) on 25 May 1943
Redesignated 90th Bombardment Squadron, Light on 29 April 1944
Inactivated on 1 Oct 1949
  • Redesignated as: 90th Bombardment Squadron, Light, Night Intruder on 7 June 1951
Activated on 25 Jun 1951
Redesignated 90th Bombardment Squadron, Tactical on 1 October 1955
Redesignated 90th Tactical Fighter Squadron on 8 June 1964
Redesignated 90th Attack Squadron on 12 December 1969
Redesignated 90th Special Operations Squadron on 31 October 1970
Redesignated 90th Tactical Fighter Squadron on 8 July 1973
Redesignated 90th Fighter Squadron on 26 September 1991[1][2][3]

Assignments

  • Post Headquarters, Kelly Field, 20 August 1917
  • Aviation Concentration Center, 5–26 October 1917
  • American Expeditionary Forces, 12 November 1917
  • 1st Air Depot, American Expeditionary Forces, c. 20 November 1917
  • I Corps Observation Group, 19 April 1918
  • IV Corps Observation Group, 13 June 1918
  • III Corps Observation Group, 21 September 1918
  • I Corps Observation Group, 30 November 1918
  • American Expeditionary Forces, December 1918 – 19 April 1919
  • Post Headquarters, Hazelhurst Field, 5 May 1919
  • Post Headquarters, Kelly Field, May 1919
  • Army Surveillance Group (later 1st Surveillance Group, 3d Group (Attack), 3d Attack Group, 3d Bombardment Group), 1 July 1919 – 1 October 1949
3d Bombardment Wing, 25 October 1957 (attached to 41st Air Division after 1 September 1963)
  • 41st Air Division, 8 January 1964
  • Tactical Air Command, 8 June 1964
  • 3d Tactical Fighter Wing, 9 June 1964 (attached to 405th Fighter Wing, 7 February–10 May 1965, 39th Air Division after 8 August 1965)
  • 834th Air Division, 19 November 1965 (remained attached to 39th Air Division Until 5 December 1965, then to 401st Tactical Fighter Wing)
  • 3d Tactical Fighter Wing, c. 8 February 1966
  • 14th Special Operations Wing, 31 October 1970
  • 483d Tactical Airlift Wing, 1 September 1971
  • 18th Tactical Fighter Wing, 15 April 1972
  • 405th Fighter Wing, 15 December 1972
  • 3d Tactical Fighter Wing, 16 September 1974
  • 21st Tactical Fighter Wing, 29 May 1991
  • 21st Operations Group, 26 September 1991
  • 3d Operations Group, 19 December 1991 – present[1][2][3]

Stations

World War I
  • Kelly Field, Texas, 20 August 1917
  • Camp Mills, Garden City, New York, 5–27 October 1917
  • Colombey-les-Belles Airdrome, France, 20 November 1917
  • Amanty Airdrome, France, 19 April 1918
  • Ourches Aerodrome, France, 13 June 1918
  • Souilly Aerodrome, France, 20 September 1918
  • Bethelainville Aerodrome, France, 29 October 1918
  • Belrain Aerodrome, France, 15 January 1919
  • Colombey-les-Belles Airdrome, France, 18 January 1919
  • Libourne, France, 25 January 1919
  • St. Denis-de-Piles, France, 29 January 1919
  • Libourne, France, 2 February 1919
  • Bordeaux, France, 10–19 April 1919
Inter-War period
Flight A operated from: Eagle Pass Field, Texas, 27 August 1919 – 12 June 1920
Flight B operated from: Kelly Field No. 2, Texas, 30 September–29 November 1919
  • Sanderson Field, Texas, 29 November 1919
Flight A operated from: Del Rio Field, Texas, 12 June 1920 – 30 June 1921
  • Kelly Field, Texas, 2 July 1921
  • Fort Crockett, Texas, 1 July 1926
Detachment operated from Fort Huachuca, Arizona, 7 April–12 May 1929
  • Barksdale Field, Louisiana, 27 February 1935 (deployed to Bakersfield, California, 3–23 May 1937)
United States Air Force
  • Iwakuni Air Base, Japan, 25 June 1951
  • Kunsan Air Base, South Korea, c. 20 August 1951
Deployed at Pusan Air Base (K-9), South Korea, 25 April–17 May 1952
  • Johnson Air Base, Japan, 5 October 1954
Deployed at Itazuke Air Base, Japan, 18 January-2 February 1957
  • Yokota Air Base, Japan, 18 November 1960 – 9 June 1964
  • England Air Force Base, Louisiana, 9 June 1964 – 8 February 1966
Deployed at Clark Air Base, Philippines, 7 February–10 May 1965
  • Misawa Air Base, Japan, 3 August–5 December 1965
  • Bien Hoa Air Base, South Vietnam, 12 February 1966
Deployed at Phan Rang Air Base, South Vietnam, 9–14 April 1967
  • Nha Trang Air Base, South Vietnam, 31 October 1970
  • Kadena Air Base, Okinawa (later, Japan), 15 April 1972
  • Clark Air Base, Philippines, 15 December 1972
  • Elmendorf Air Force Base (later Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson), Alaska, 29 May 1991 – present[1][2][3]

Aircraft

Operations

See also

References

  1. ^ a b c d e f g Robertson, Patsy (February 6, 2012). "Factsheet 90 Fighter Squadron (PACAF)". Air Force Historical Research Agency. Retrieved August 23, 2017.
  2. ^ a b c d Gorrell
  3. ^ a b c d Maurer, Combat Squadrons
  4. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x y z aa "90th Fighter Squadron". Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson.mil. 2011. Retrieved 23 March 2011.
  5. ^ a b c d e f g Carver, et al.
  6. ^ Bruce, p.590.
  7. ^ Schreiner & Eisel,

Bibliography

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

  • Bruce, J.M. "The Sopwith 1½ Strutter: Historic Military Aircraft No. 14 Part II". Flight, 5 October 1956.
  • Carver, Leland M.; Lindstrom, Gustaf A.; Foster, A.T.; Griest, E. Harold (1990) [1920]. The Ninetieth Aero Squadron, American Expeditionary Forces, World War I (Expanded, Annotated ed.). Russia: Ripol Classic. ISBN 978-5871971574.
  • Gorrell, Col. Edgar S. (1974). History of the American Expeditionary Forces Air Service, 1917-1919. Series E. Vol. 9 72d, 73d, 85th, and 88th-90th Aero Squadrons. Washington, DC: National Archives and Records Service, General Services Administration. OCLC 215070705.
  • Maurer, Maurer, ed. (1983) [1961]. Air Force Combat Units of World War II (PDF) (reprint ed.). Washington, DC: Office of Air Force History. ISBN 0-912799-02-1. LCCN 61060979. Retrieved December 17, 2016.
  • 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. Retrieved December 17, 2016.
  • Ravenstein, Charles A. (1984). Air Force Combat Wings, Lineage & Honors Histories 1947-1977 (PDF). Washington, DC: Office of Air Force History. ISBN 0-912799-12-9. Retrieved December 17, 2016.
  • Lt Col Schreiner, Jim (Boomer); Eisel, Brick (2009). MAGNUM! The Wild Weasels in Desert Storm: The Elimination of Iraq's Air Defence. Barnsley, UK: Pen and Sword Aviation. ISBN 978-1473899001.
21st Operations Group

The 21st Operations Group (21 OG) is an operational component of the 21st Space Wing, stationed at Peterson Air Force Base, Colorado.

The mission of the 21st OG is to provide overall management and guidance to 21 geographically separated units assigned to the wing, which provide attack warning and space control. Its history goes back to World War II when the 21st Fighter Group flew very long range (VLR) escort missions of Twentieth Air Force B-29 Superfortress bombardment groups against Japan. During the Cold War, the unit was a USAFE tactical fighter unit assigned to France in the 1950s and later controlled all operational fighter squadrons at Elmendorf AFB, Alaska.

36th Operations Group

The 36th Operations Group (36 OG) is the operational component of the 36th Wing, assigned to the United States Air Force Pacific Air Forces. The group is stationed at Andersen Air Force Base, Guam.

The groups World War II predecessor unit, the 36th Fighter Group was a prewar unit deployed to the European Theater and assigned to Ninth Air Force. The group flew P-47 Thunderbolts and earned a Distinguished Unit Citation for operations on 1 September 1944 when, in a series of missions, the group attacked German columns south of the Loire River in order to disrupt the enemy's retreat across central France to Dijon.

The 36th OG assumed the mission of the 36th Expeditionary Operations Group on 14 February 2007 and established a permanent command structure for deployed Air Force units assigned to Andersen AFB.

3rd Operations Group

The 3rd Operations Group is the operational flying component of the United States Air Force 3rd Wing. It is stationed at Elmendorf Air Force Base, Alaska, and is assigned to Pacific Air Forces' Eleventh Air Force.

The group is a composite organization that provides air superiority and defense for Alaska flying F-22A Raptor stealth aircraft. In addition, the group supports Pacific Air Forces in the Pacific Command area of responsibility flying C-17 Globemaster III transports and E-3B sentry airborne early warning and control (AWACS) aircraft.

The group is a direct successor organization of the 3rd Attack Group, one of the 15 original combat air groups formed by the Army before World War II. It is the oldest active group in the USAF, and the first created after the establishment of the U.S. Air Service. Based in Texas after World War I, the group patrolled the Mexican Border from Brownsville, Texas, to Nogales, Arizona. The group pioneered dive bombing, skip-bombing, and parafrag attacks in the 1920s—the earliest forms of precision guided attack from aircraft—and put this work to good use in World War II.

The World War II 3rd Bombardment Group moved to Australia early in 1942 and served primarily in the Southwest Pacific Theater as a light bombardment group assigned to Fifth Air Force. The group participated in numerous campaigns during the war, engaging in combat over Japan; Netherlands East Indies; New Guinea; Bismarck Archipelago; Western Pacific; Leyte; Luzon and the Southern Philippines. On 2 November 1943, the group encountered heavy opposition from Japanese forces at Simpson Harbor, New Britain. In that attack Major Raymond H. Wilkins, commander of the 8th Bombardment Squadron, sank two ships before he was shot down as he deliberately drew the fire of a destroyer so that other planes of his squadron could withdraw safely-an action for which Maj Wilkins was posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor.

The 3rd again served in combat during the Korean War, using B-26 Invader light bombers. Captain John S. Walmsley, Jr. was posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor for his actions a night mission. Capt Walmsley discovered and attacked an enemy supply train, and after exhausting his ammunition he flew at low altitude to direct other aircraft to the same objective; the train was destroyed but Walmsley’s plane crashed in the target area.

Notable alumni include General Hoyt S. Vandenberg, General Jimmy Doolittle, General Lewis Brereton, General Richard Ellis, General John Henebry, Major Paul I. "Pappy" Gunn, and General Nathan Twining.

3rd Wing

The 3rd Wing is a unit of the United States Air Force, assigned to the Pacific Air Forces (PACAF) Eleventh Air Force. It is stationed at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska.

The Wing is the largest and principal unit within 11th Air Force. A composite organization, it provides air supremacy, surveillance, worldwide airlift, and agile combat support forces to project power and reach. As the host unit at Elmendorf, the 3rd Wing also maintains the installation for force staging and throughput operations for worldwide U.S. DOD short-notice deployments, and provides medical care for all forces in Alaska.

The wing's 3rd Operations Group is a direct descendant of the 3rd Attack Group, one of the 15 original combat air groups formed by the Army before World War II. The Wing performed reconnaissance and interdiction combat missions from Iwakuni Air Base, Japan, at the beginning of the Korean War.

During the Vietnam War, the wing moved in November 1965 to Bien Hoa Air Base, South Vietnam, a forward operating base, which frequently came under enemy mortar and rocket fire. Missions included close air support, counterinsurgency, forward air control, interdiction, and radar-controlled bombing. Supported numerous ground operations with strike missions against enemy fortifications, supply areas, lines of communication and personnel, in addition to suppressing fire in landing areas.

Today, the 3rd Wing trains and equips an Air Expeditionary Force lead wing composed of more than 6,000 Airmen and E-3B, C-17 and F-22A aircraft.

90 Squadron

90 Squadron or 90th Squadron may refer to:

No. 90 Squadron RAF, a unit of the British Royal Air Force

90th Fighter Squadron, a unit of the United States Air Force

90th Cyber Operations Squadron, a unit of the United States Air Force

90th Aero Squadron

The 90th Aero Squadron was a Air Service, United States Army unit that fought on the Western Front during World War I.

The squadron was assigned as a Corps Observation Squadron, performing short-range, tactical reconnaissance over the III Corps, United States First Army sector of the Western Front in France, providing battlefield intelligence. After the 1918 Armistice with Germany, the squadron returned to the United States in May 1919 and became part of the permanent United States Army Air Service in 1921, being re-designated as the 90th Squadron (Surveillance) .The current United States Air Force unit which holds its lineage and history is the 90th Fighter Squadron, assigned to the 3d Operations Group, Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska.

90th Flying Training Squadron

The 90th Flying Training Squadron is part of the 80th Flying Training Wing based at Sheppard Air Force Base, Texas. It operates Northrop T-38 Talon aircraft conducting flight training.

94th Fighter Squadron

The 94th Fighter Squadron is a unit of the United States Air Force 1st Operations Group located at Joint Base Langley–Eustis, Virginia. The 94th is equipped with the F-22 Raptor.The 94 FS is one of the oldest units in the United States Air Force, first being organized on 20 August 1917 as the 94th Aero Squadron of the United States Army Air Service at Kelly Field, Texas. The squadron deployed to France and fought on the Western Front during World War I as a pursuit squadron. It took part in the Champagne-Marne defensive; Aisne-Marne offensive; St. Mihiel offensive, and Meuse-Argonne offensive.In 1924, it was consolidated with the 103d Aero Squadron (Pursuit). The 103d was largely composed of former members of the French Air Service Lafayette Escadrille (from the French Escadrille de Lafayette). This was a squadron of American volunteer pilots who had joined the French Air Service prior to the United States entry into the war on 6 April 1917. In July 1926, with the disestablishment of the U.S. Army Air Service, the squadron became part of the U.S. Army Air Corps (USAAC).

In June 1941, the squadron became part of the renamed U.S. Army Air Forces (USAAF). During World War II the unit served in the Mediterranean Theater of Operations (MTO) as part of Twelfth Air Force as a P-38 Lightning fighter squadron, participating in the North African and Italian campaigns. In September 1947, it became part of the newly-established United States Air Force (USAF). During the Cold War it was both an Air Defense Command (ADC) fighter-interceptor squadron, and later as part of Tactical Air Command (TAC). It was one of the first USAF operational squadrons equipped with the F-15A Eagle in January 1976. With the disestablishment of TAC in 1992, it was assigned to the newly-established Air Combat Command (ACC).

Air-to-air missile

An air-to-air missile (AAM) is a missile fired from an aircraft for the purpose of destroying another aircraft. AAMs are typically powered by one or more rocket motors, usually solid fueled but sometimes liquid fueled. Ramjet engines, as used on the Meteor (missile) are emerging as propulsion that will enable future medium-range missiles to maintain higher average speed across their engagement envelope.

Air-to-air missiles are broadly put in two groups. Those designed to engage opposing aircraft at ranges of less than 30 km are known as short-range or "within visual range" missiles (SRAAMs or WVRAAMs) and are sometimes called "dogfight" missiles because they are designed to optimize their agility rather than range. Most use infrared guidance and are called heat-seeking missiles. In contrast, medium- or long-range missiles (MRAAMs or LRAAMs), which both fall under the category of beyond visual range missiles (BVRAAMs), tend to rely upon radar guidance, of which there are many forms. Some modern ones use inertial guidance and/or "mid-course updates" to get the missile close enough to use an active homing sensor.

Eagle Pass Municipal Airport

Eagle Pass Municipal Airport is a former airport, located in Eagle Pass, Texas. Airport operations ended around 1996, being transferred to the Maverick County Memorial International Airport. Today the former airport is a commercial site.

Eleventh Air Force

The Eleventh Air Force (11 AF) is a Numbered Air Force of the United States Air Force Pacific Air Forces (PACAF). It is headquartered at Joint Base Elmendorf–Richardson, Alaska.11 AF plans, conducts, controls and coordinates air operations in accordance with the tasks assigned by the commander, Pacific Air Forces, and is the force provider for Alaskan Command, the Alaska North American Aerospace Defense Command Region and other unified commanders.

Established on 28 December 1941 as the Alaskan Air Force at Elmendorf Field, Alaska Territory. 11 AF was a United States Army Air Forces combat air force in the American Theater of World War II, providing air defense of Alaska and engaging in combat operations primarily in the Aleutian Islands and Northern Pacific during the Aleutian Islands Campaign.

Re-designated as Alaskan Air Command in late 1945, the organization became responsible for the air defense of Alaska during the Cold War. With the collapse of the Soviet Union, the organization was realigned under PACAF in 1990 and returned to its previous Numbered Air Force command echelon.

List of American aero squadrons

This is a partial list of original Air Service, United States Army "Aero Squadrons" before and during World War I. Units formed after 1 January 1919 are not listed.

Aero Squadrons were the designation of the first United States Army aviation units until the end of World War I. These units consisted of combat flying, training, ground support, construction and other components of the Air Service. After World War I ended, the majority of these squadrons were demobilized. Some however were retained during the interwar period of the 1920s and 1930s, and served in all theaters of operation during World War II. Today, the oldest squadrons in the United States Air Force and Air National Guard can trace their lineage back to the original Aero Squadrons of World War I.

List of McDonnell Douglas F-15 Eagle operators

The McDonnell Douglas F-15 Eagle has been in service with the United States Air Force since 1976. Israel, Japan, Saudi Arabia and other nations also operate the aircraft. The units it has been assigned to, and the bases it has been stationed are listed below.

List of United States Air Force fighter squadrons

This is a list of United States Air Force fighter squadrons. It covers units considered to be part of the Combat Air Force (CAF) such as fighter squadrons and serves as a break out of the comprehensive List of United States Air Force squadrons. Units in this list are assigned to nearly every Major Command in the United States Air Force.

List of active United States Air Force aircraft squadrons

This is an organized incomplete list of all of the active aircraft squadrons that currently exist in the United States Air Force, sorted by type. Most squadrons have changed names and designations many times over the years, so they are listed by their current designation.

To see all USAF squadrons, regardless of active or not, go to the List of United States Air Force squadrons.

Lockheed Martin F-22 Raptor

The Lockheed Martin F-22 Raptor is a fifth-generation, single-seat, twin-engine, all-weather stealth tactical fighter aircraft developed for the United States Air Force (USAF). The result of the USAF's Advanced Tactical Fighter program, the aircraft was designed primarily as an air superiority fighter, but also has ground attack, electronic warfare, and signal intelligence capabilities. The prime contractor, Lockheed Martin, built most of the F-22's airframe and weapons systems and conducted final assembly, while Boeing provided the wings, aft fuselage, avionics integration, and training systems.

The aircraft was variously designated F-22 and F/A-22 before it formally entered service in December 2005 as the F-22A. After a protracted development and despite operational issues, the USAF considered the F-22 critical to its tactical air power. When the aircraft was introduced, the USAF stated that it was unmatched by any known or projected fighter. The F-22's combination of stealth, aerodynamic performance, and situational awareness gives the aircraft unprecedented air combat capabilities.The high cost of the aircraft, a lack of clear air-to-air missions due to delays in Russian and Chinese fighter programs, a ban on exports, and development of the more versatile F-35 led to the end of F-22 production. A final procurement tally of 187 operational production aircraft was established in 2009, and the last F-22 was delivered to the USAF in 2012.

McDonnell Douglas F-15E Strike Eagle

The McDonnell Douglas (now Boeing) F-15E Strike Eagle is an American all-weather multirole strike fighter derived from the McDonnell Douglas F-15 Eagle. The F-15E was designed in the 1980s for long-range, high-speed interdiction without relying on escort or electronic-warfare aircraft. United States Air Force (USAF) F-15E Strike Eagles can be distinguished from other U.S. Eagle variants by darker aircraft camouflage and conformal fuel tanks (CFTs) mounted along the engine intake ramps (although CFTs can also be mounted on earlier F-15 variants).

The Strike Eagle has been deployed for military operations in Iraq, Afghanistan, Syria, and Libya, among others. During these operations, the strike fighter has carried out deep strikes against high-value targets and combat air patrols, and provided close air support for coalition troops. It has also been exported to several countries.

RAAF Station Archerfield

RAAF Station Archerfield was a permanent Royal Australian Air Force station at Archerfield Airport in Brisbane, Queensland, Australia, from 1939 to 1956.

Val Verde County Airport

Val Verde County Airport is a former airport, located in Del Rio, Texas. Airport operations ended in 1959. Today the former airport is a residential site.

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