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104th Fighter Squadron: Wikis

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104th Fighter Squadron
104th Fighter Squadron.PNG
104th Fighter Squadron Squadron Emblem
Active 1921-1944, 1946-Present
Country United States
Branch United States Air Force
Type Squadron
Role Close Air Support
Part of Air National Guard/Air Combat Command
Garrison/HQ Warfield Air National Guard Base, Maryland
Engagements World War II
Afghanistan 2003

The 104th Fighter Squadron is an attack squadron equipped with the A-10 Thunderbolt II. It is a unit of the Maryland Air National Guard. Its parent unit is the 175th Wing.

Contents

Mission

The 104th Fighter Squadron is an attack fighter squadron. Its primary mission is close air support (ground attack in support of troops in contact with enemy forces). Secondary missions include search and rescue and non-traditional reconnaissance.

History

The 104th Fighter Squadron traces its origins to June 29, 1921, when it was federally recognized as the 104th Observation Squadron in Baltimore, Maryland. It became the first post-World War I National Guard unit to be equipped with its own aircraft, 13 Curtiss JN-4 Jennies, which it flew until 1923.

Initially assigned as division aviation for the 29th Infantry Division, the unit operated out of Baltimore's Logan Field. In addition to Jennies, the 104th flew a variety of other aircraft during the interwar period, almost all of them two-seat biplanes.

Along with the rest of the Maryland National Guard, the 104th was mobilized for federal service on February 3, 1941. During World War II, the 104th flew anti-submarine patrols out of Atlantic City, New Jersey, and was awarded campaign credit for participation in the Anti-Submarine Campaign. On October 18, 1942, the unit was inactivated and its personnel transferred to the 517th Bombardment Squadron.

The 104th was transferred without personnel or aircraft to Birmingham, Alabama and reassigned to III Air Support Command. It was again reassigned to 3rd Air Force and reactivated at Ft. Myers, Florida in March 1943, now manned by Regular Army replacements. At the end of March, the unit was re-designated athe 104th Reconnaissance Squadron (Fighter) and transferred to Thomasville Army Airfield, Georgia, where it conducted flight training. In August 1943 it was redesignated as the 489th Fighter Squadron. The unit was deactivated in May 1944 and its members reassigned.

In 1946, the 104th was reactivated as the 104th Fighter Squadron at Harbor Field in Baltimore, equipped with P-47 Thunderbolt aircraft, later replaced by F-51 Mustangs. From 1955 to 1958, the unit was organized as a fighter-interceptor squadron and charged with defending the Baltimore-Washington area against possible Soviet bomber attack. The unit soon converted to F-86 Sabrejets, and in 1957 relocated to the Glenn L. Martin Company Airport, whose longer runway was necessary to support jet operations.

When the 175th Tactical Fighter Group was established in October 1962, the 104th Tactical Fighter Squadron, which had heretofore operated as an independent squadron, became a part of the new group. Since then, it has remained a subordinate unit of the 175th (now the 175th Wing) and a part of the Maryland Air National Guard.

In 2003 the unit was mobilized and deployed to Bagram Air Base, Afghanistan. It remained there for six months conducting operations against al Qaeda and Taliban forces. It served longer at Bagram than any other United States Air Force fighter unit. The 104th is also is notable for having won Gunsmoke '91, the Air Force Worldwide Gunnery Competition.

Assignments

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Major Command

Previous Designations[1]

  • 104th Observation Squadron (1921-1942)
  • 104th Reconnaissance Squadron (Fighter) (1942-1943)
  • 489th Fighter Squadron (1943-1944)
  • 104th Fighter Squadron (1946-1952)
  • 104th Fighter-Bomber Squadron (1952-1955)
  • 104th Fighter Interceptor Squadron (1955-1958)
  • 104th Tactical Fighter Squadron (1958-1992)
  • 104th Fighter Squadron (1992-Present)

Bases Stationed[1]

Aircraft Operated[1]

  • JN-4 Jenny (includes JN4D, JN4H and JNS)(1921-1927)
  • TW-3 (1925-1930)
  • O-2C (1926-1927)
  • PT-1 (1927-1933)
  • O-11 Falcon (1928-1932)
  • O-17 Courier (1928-1933)
  • BT-1 (1929-1934)
  • O-38 (1930-1937)
  • O-49 Vigilant (1935-1942)
  • O-46 (1937-1941)
  • O-47A (1938-1942)
  • O-47B (1940-1941)
  • BC-1A (1940)-(1941)
  • P-40 Warhawk (1943-1944)
  • P-39 Airacobra (1944)
  • AT-6 Texan (1946-1955)
  • C-47 Skytrain (1946-1959)
  • B-26 Invader (1946-1950)
  • L-5 Sentinel (1946-1950)
  • P-47 Thunderbolt (1946-1951)
  • F-51 Mustang (1951-1955)
  • T-33 Shooting Star (1954-1970)
  • C-45H Expeditor (1954-1956)
  • F-86E Sabre (1955-1957)
  • F-86H Sabre (1957-1970)
  • C-54D Skymaster (1967-1968)
  • C-131A Samaritan (1972-1977)
  • A-10A Thunderbolt II (1979-2007)
  • A-10C Thunderbolt II (2007-present)

References

  1. ^ a b c Ball, Ronald, et al. (2000). The Maryland Air National Guard: A Commemorative History.

External links


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