14th Flying Training Wing

14th Flying Training Wing

Infobox Military Unit
unit_name= 14th Flying Training Wing


caption=
dates= 20 November 1940 — present
country=United States
allegiance=
branch=Air Force
type=Training
role=
size=
command_structure=Air Education and Training Command
current_commander=Colonel [http://www.columbus.af.mil/library/biographies/bio.asp?id=11384 Roger Watkins]
garrison=Columbus Air Force Base
ceremonial_chief=
colonel_of_the_regiment=
nickname=Blaze
patron=
motto=Day and Night - Peace and War
colors=
identification_symbol=
march=
mascot=
battles=


* World War II: European Campaign (1942-1945)
* Vietnam Service (1966-1971)
notable_commanders= Robert H. Foglesong
anniversaries=
decorations=
battle_honours=
The 14th Flying Training Wing (14 FTW) is a wing of the United States Air Force based out of Columbus Air Force Base, Mississippi.

Mission

The 14th Operations Group and its six squadrons are responsible for the 52-week Specialized Undergraduate Pilot Training (SUPT) mission. The group also performs quality assurance for contract aircraft maintenance.

The 14th Mission Support Group provides essential services with a 5-squadron/2-division, 750+ person work force and $38 million budget. It operates/maintains facilities and infrastructure for a 6,013-acre pilot training base and provides contracting, law enforcement, supply, transportation, fire protection, communications, education, recreation and personnel management for 9,500 people. The group is also responsible for wartime preparedness and contingency operations.

Units

14th Operations Group (14 OG)
*37th Flying Training Squadron (37 FTS)
*41st Flying Training Squadron (41 FTS)
*43d Flying Training Squadron (43 FTS)
*48th Flying Training Squadron (48 FTS)
*49th Fighter Training Squadron (49 FTS)
*50th Flying Training Squadron (50 FTS)
*14th Operations Support Squadron (14 OSS)

14th Mission Support Group (14 MSG)
*14th Civil Engineering Squadron (14 CES)
*14th Communications Squadron (14 CS)
*14th Contracting Squadron (14 CONS)
*14th Logistics Readiness Squadron (14 LRS)
*14th Security Forces Squadron (14 SFS)
*14th Mission Support Squadron (14 MSS)

14th Medical Group (14 MDG)

Additionally, the 14th Comptroller Squadron (14 CPTS) reports directly to the 14 TFW.

History

The history of the unit begins with the United States Army Air Corps 14th Pursuit Group, which fought in World War II as the United States Army Air Forces 14th Fighter Group. The unit also fought in the Vietnam War before becoming a training organization in the 1970s.

Lineage

* Established as 14th Pursuit Group (Fighter) on 20 Nov 1940: Activated on 15 Jan 1941: Redesignated 14th Fighter Group on 15 May 1942: Inactivated on 9 Sep 1945: Activated on 20 Nov 1946.
* Established as 14th Fighter Wing on 29 Jul 1947: Organized on 15 Aug 1947. : Inactivated on 2 Oct 1949
* Redesignated 14th Air Commando Wing, and activated, on 28 Feb 1966: Organized on 8 Mar 1966. : Redesignated 14th Special Operations Wing on 1 Aug 1968. : Inactivated on 30 Sep 1971.
* Redesignated 14th Flying Training Wing on 22 Mar 1972: Activated on 1 Jun 1972.

Assignments

* Southwest Air District: 10th Pursuit Wing, 15 Jan 1941: 9th Pursuit Wing, 1 Jun 1941: IV Bomber Command, 5 Sep 1941 :: Attached to IV Interceptor Command, 17 Oct-Dec 1941: IV Interceptor (later, IV Fighter) Command, 26 Jan 1942
* Eighth Air Force: VIII Fighter Command:: 6th Fighter Wing, Aug 1942
* Twelfth Air Force: XII Fighter Command, 14 Sep 1942: XII Bomber Command, 11 Dec 1942:: Northwest African Training Command, Feb 1943:: 7th Fighter Wing: 18 Feb - 14 Mar 1943:: 5th Bombardment Wing, May - 10 Jul 1943:: Northwest Tactical Air Force, 10 Jul 1943:: 5th Bombardment Wing, 14 - 25 Jul 1943:: 2686 Medium Bombardment Wing (Provisional), 25 Jul 1943:: 5th Bombardment Wing, Sep - Nov 1943
* Fifteenth Air Force: 306th Fighter Wing, 1 Nov 1943 - 27 Mar 1944 : 305th Fighter Wing, 3 Sep 1944: 305 Bombardment Wing, Heavy, 12 Jun 1945
* Air Defense Command: First Air Force, 20 Nov 1946 - 2 Oct 1949
* Pacific Air Forces, 28 Feb 1966: 2d Air Division, 8 Mar 1966: Seventh Air Force, 1 Apr 1966-30 Sep 1971
* Air Training Command, 1 Jun 1972 - 1 Jul 1993
* Air Education and Training Command: Nineteenth Air Force, 1 Jul 1993- Present

Bases stationed

*Hamilton Field, California (1941)
*March Field, California (1941 – 1942)
* Hamilton Field, California (1942)
*RAF Atcham, England (1942)
*Algeria (1942 – 1943)
*French Morocco (1943)
*Tunisia (1943)
*Italy (1943 – 1945)
*Dow Air Force Base, Maine (1946 – 1949)
*Nha Trang Air Base, South Vietnam (1966 – 1969)
*Phan Rang Air Base, South Vietnam (1969 – 1971)
*Columbus Air Force Base, Mississippi (1972 – Present)

Aircraft operated

1940s
*P-40 Warhawk (1941)
*P-43 Lancer (1941)
*P-66 Vanguard (1941)
*P-38 Lightning (1941 – 1945)
*P-47 Thunderbolt (1946 – 1949)
*F-84 Thunderjet (1947 – 1949)

1950s
* F-86 Sabre (1955-1958)
* F/TF-102A Delta Dagger (1958-1960)Vietnam War
*A-1 Skyraider (1966 – 1968)
*AC-47 Spooky (1966 – 1969)
*C-47 Skytrain (1966 – 1971)
*HC-47 (1966 – 1969)
*U-10 Super Courier (1966 – 1969)
*CH-3 Jolly Green Giant (1966 – 1969)
*O-2 Skymaster (1967 – 1971)
*UH-1 Iroquois (1967 – 1971)
*C-130 Hercules (1968 – 1971)
*C-123 Provider (1968 – 1971)
*AC-130 Spectre (1968)
*AC-119 Shadow (1968 – 1971)Flying Training
*T-41 Mescalero (1972 – 1973)
*T-37 (1972 – 2008)
*T-38 Talon (1972 – Present)
*AT-38 Talon (1993 – 2000 and 2007 - present)
*T-1 Jayhawk (1996 – Present)
*T-6 Texan II (2006 – Present)

Operational History

World War II

The 14th Pursuit Group was activated on 15 January 1941 at Hamilton Field, California. Reassigned to March Field in California in early June 1941. Trained with Curtiss P-40s, P-43 Lancers and P-38D/E Lightnings. Reassigned back to Hamilton Field on 7 February 1942 to receive operational P-38F and flew flying patrols on the west coast of the US after the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. Although these fighters were not yet combat ready, these outfits had the only truly modern fighters then available to the USAAF, and provided West Coast defense at a time that Japanese attacks on the US mainland were believed to be imminent.

Even though the defense of the US west coast initially took priority, plans were made in the spring of 1942 to deploy the 14th and other P-38 squadrons to Great Britain. Redesignated the 14th Fighter Group in May 1942. The Ground echelon departed 16 July 1942 on the first stage of the movement to England. They sailed on the USS West Point in early August 1942, and arrived in Liverpool on 17th Aug 1942. The air echelon departed to Bradley Field, Connecticut on July 1st 1942. They flew P-38s to the United Kingdom via the nortern ferry route. The first aircraft departed Presque Isle, Maine on 22 July 1942. The 50th Fighter Squadron remained in Iceland and was reassigned to the 342d Composite Group to assist the Curtiss P-40Cs of the 33rd Fighter Squadron in the flying of defensive patrols over the Atlantic.

This was the first transatlantic crossing successfully made by single-seat fighters. In Britain, the group was stationed at RAF Atcham as part of Eighth Air Force.

The 14th was reassigned to Twelfth Air Force XII Fighter Command on the 14th of September 1942, but continued to operate under VIII Fighter Command until mid-October flying sweeps over France and performing practice missions under the Royal Air Force's guidance.

The Ground echelon left Atcham on the 30th of October 1942, and sailed on the USS Brazil and USS Uruguay from Liverpool and arrived in Oran, Algeria on the 10th of November 1942. The air echelon departed for North Africa on the 6th of November 1942, and flew to Tafaraoui airfield, Algeria from the 10th to the 14th of November 1942

From bases in Algeria, and later Tunisia, the group flew escort, strafing, and reconnaissance missions from the middle of Nov 1942 to late in Jan 1943. The Lightnings were soon in regular combat in the North African Campaign. The 14th contributed a great deal toward the establishment of local air superiority in the area, being effective against bombers and had wreaked great havoc among Rommel's air transport well out to sea. The P-38s earned the German nickname "der Gabelschwanz Teufel"--the Fork-Tailed Devil. In January 1943, the 14th was withdrawn from combat, with some of the men and planes being reassigned to the 1st and 82d groups.

The group resumed operational combat operations in May, being re-equipped with the P-38F and some P-38Gs. Already prior to the Axis defeat in Tunisia, the Northwest African Air Forces (of which the Twelfth Air Force was a component) had begun preparations for the invasion of Sicily. Attacks on Sicily, on Pantelleria and on Lampedusa were stepped up in preparation for Operation Husky, the invasion of Sicily on July 10, 1943. The group flew dive-bombing missions during the Allied assault on Pantelleria. Helped prepare for and support the invasions of Sicily and Italy. Lieut H. T. Hanna of the 14th Fighter Group made ace in one day by destroying five Junkers Ju 87 dive bombers on October 9, 1943.

Reassigned to Fifteenth Air Force in November 1943, being assigned to Triolo Airfield, Italy. Engaged primarily in escort work flying many missions to cover bombers engaged in long-range operations against strategic objectives in Italy, France, Germany, Czechoslovakia, Austria, Hungary, Yugoslavia, Rumania, and Bulgaria. However, on occasion, they escorted the medium bombers of the Twelfth Air Force.

On 2 April 1944, the 14th Fighter Group earned a Distinguished Unit Citation for escorting bombers attacking ball-bearing and aircraft production facilities at Steyr, Austria.

In late July and early August 1944, the 14th flew a shuttle missions to Russia and returned to their Italian base after spending three days at a Soviet base in the Ukraine. Along with their P-51 escorts, they shot down thirty German planes and destroyed twelve on the ground. The last Lightning shuttle mission was flown on August 4/6.

The group provided escort for reconnaissance operations, supported the invasion of Southern France in Aug 1944, and on numerous occasions flew long-range missions to strafe and dive-bomb motor vehicles, trains, bridges, supply areas, airdromes, and troop concentrations in an area extending from France to the Balkans.

The 14th Fighter Group was inactivated in Italy on 9 Sep 1945.

Air Defense Command

Activated in the US on 20 Nov 1946 at Dow Field, Maine as part of Air Defense Command. it's 37th FIS waqs equipped first with P-47’s and later with F-84’s. Inactivated on 2 Oct 1949. Redesignated 14th Fighter Group (Air Defense). Reativated on 18 Aug 1955 at Ethan Allen AFB, Vermont. Assigned to Air Defense Command and equipped with F-86 aircraft. It's 37th FIS upgraded in 1958 to the F-102 until being inactivated on 23 May 1960.

outheast Asia

The unit was redesignated as the 14th Air Commando Wing and was reactivated at Nha Trang AB Republic of Vietnam on 8 March 1966. On 1 August 1968 it was renamed the 14th Special Operations Wing and was the host unit at the base until 30 September 1971. From 15 October 1969 through 30 September 1971 the 14th SOW also operated and conducted missions from Phan Rang Air Base Republic of Vietnm

Operations included close and direct air support, interdiction, combat airlift, aerial resupply, visual and photographic reconnaissance, unconventional warfare, counterinsurgency operations, psychological warfare (including leaflet dropping and aerial broadcasting), forward air control operations and escort, search and rescue, escort for convoy and defoliation operations, flare drops, civic actions, and humanitarian actions.

The 14th Air Commando Wing distinguished itself by extraordinary heroism, exceptional gallantry and outstanding performance of duty in action against hostile forces in Southeast Asia from 8 March 1966 to 7 March 1967, earning a Presidential Unit Citation. Flying thousands of widely diversified sorties, elements of the Wing caused many enemy casualties and destroyed or damaged more than 8,500 structures, 500 trucks and 60 fuel sites as well as numerous automatic weapon positions, radio stations, bridges and boats.

Flying the venerable C-47 aircraft, one squadron of the Wing helped abort a large number of night hostile operations against friendly forts and hamlets through flare drops and minigun saturation fire. Despite the often heavy and accurate enemy antiaircraft fire, the search and rescue missions of the Wing recovered 91 skilled airmen during this period. In addition, the Wing's psychological warfare missions directly or indirectly influenced the surrender of thousands of enemy soldiers.

The wing also provided maintenance support for a number of tenants. The wing trained Vietnam Air Force (VNAF) personnel in AC-119 operations and maintenance, February-August 1971, and transferred some of its AC-119s to the VNAF, August-September 1971 as part of a phase-down for inactivation.

Air Training/Air Education and Training Command

The 14th replaced, and absorbed resources of, the 3650th Pilot Training Wing in June 1972 at Columbus Air Force Base, Mississippi, and assumed an undergraduate pilot training program, plus base operations and maintenance. From 1993 to 2000, the wing also trained pilots in fighter fundamentals, using AT-38 aircraft. Fighter fundamentals training at Columbus resumed on May 10, 2007 with the reassignment of the 49th Fighter Training Squadron from Moody AFB. On 27 January 1995, Second Lieutenant Kelly Flinn graduated from pilot training with the 14th Flying Training Wing on her way to becoming the first woman to enter B-52 Stratofortress combat crew training.

Operations

* World War II
* Vietnam War
* 5th Air Division

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.
* Martin, Patrick (1994). Tail Code: The Complete History of USAF Tactical Aircraft Tail Code Markings. Schiffer Military Aviation History. ISBN 0887405134.
* Maurer, Maurer (1983). Air Force Combat Units Of World War II. Maxwell AFB, Alabama: Office of Air Force History. ISBN 0892010924.
* Ravenstein, Charles A. (1984). Air Force Combat Wings Lineage and Honors Histories 1947-1977. Maxwell AFB, Alabama: Office of Air Force History. ISBN 0912799129.
* [http://home.att.net/~jbaugher/usafserials.html USAAS-USAAC-USAAF-USAF Aircraft Serial Numbers--1908 to present]

External links

* [http://www.columbus.af.mil/ Columbus AFB Home Page]


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