14th Operations Group: Wikis

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14th Operations Group
14th Flying Training Wing.jpg
Active 1941-1960; 1991-Present
Country United States
Branch United States Air Force
Type Training
Part of 14th Flying Training Wing
Garrison/HQ Columbus Air Force Base
Nickname Blaze
Motto Day and Night - Peace and War
Engagements
World War II Victory Medal ribbon.svg European-African-Middle Eastern Campaign ribbon.svg
  • World War II
European Campaign (1942–1945)
Decorations Presidential Unit Citation ribbon.svg PUC
Air Force Meritorious Unit ribbon.svg MUA
Outstanding Unit ribbon.svg AFOUA
GallantryCrossRibbon.jpg RVGC w/ Palm
Commanders
Current
commander
Colonel Roger Watkins
Notable
commanders
Robert H. Foglesong
T-6 Texan IIs over Columbus Mississippi
14th OG Beechcraft T-1A Jayhawk, 93-644
Northrup T-38C formation from the 50th Flying Training Squadron. 66-4327, 68-8162 and 68-8187 identifiable.

The 14th Operations Group (14 OG) is the flying component of the 14th Flying Training Wing, assigned to the United States Air Force Air Education and Training Command. The group is stationed at Columbus Air Force Base, Mississippi.

Contents

Overview

The 14th Operations Group and its six squadrons are responsible for the 52-week Specialized Undergraduate Pilot Training (SUPT) mission at Columbus AFB or the U.S. Air Force and international officers. The group uses a fleet of T-37, T-38, and T-1 aircraft and flight simulators.

The Group's 250 aircraft fly about 90,000 hours annually in 11,500 square miles of airspace.

Components

The 14th Operations Group (Tail Code: CB) consists of the following squadrons:

History

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Lineage

  • Established as 14 Pursuit Group (Fighter) on 20 Nov 1940
Activated on 15 Jan 1941
Redesignated 14 Fighter Group on 15 May 1942
Inactivated on 9 Sep 1945
  • Activated on 20 Nov 1946
Inactivated on 2 Oct 1949
  • Established as: 517th Air Defense Group on 16 Feb 1953
  • Redesignated 14 Fighter Group (Air Defense) on 20 Jun 1955
Activated on 18 Aug 1955 by redesignation of 517th Air Defense Group
Discontinued on 25 Jun 1960
  • Redesignated: 14 Tactical Fighter Group on 31 Jul 1985 (unit remained inactive)
  • Redesignated: 14 Operations Group on 9 Dec 1991
Activated on 15 Dec 1991.

Assignments

Attached to IV Interceptor Command, 17 Oct-Dec 1941

Components

Stations

Aircraft assigned

Operational History

Lockheed P-38F-5-LO Lightning 42-12596 of the 50th Fighter Squadron in Iceland, 1942
14th Fighter Group P-38 being serviced in North Africa, 1943
Republic F-84B Thunderjets 46-535, 46-548, 46-581 of the 14th Fighter Wing (Air Defense), 1948
Convair F-102A-35-CO Delta Dagger 54-1395 of the 14th Fighter Interceptor Group, 1959. Converted to PQM-102B in the 1980s and expended.

World War II

The 14th Pursuit Group was activated on January 15, 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 February 7, 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 July 16, 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 August 17, 1942. The air echelon departed to Bradley Field, Connecticut on July 1, 1942. They flew P-38s to the United Kingdom via the northern ferry route. The first aircraft departed Presque Isle, Maine on July 22, 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 September 14, 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 October 30, 1942, and sailed on the USS Brazil and USS Uruguay from Liverpool and arrived in Oran, Algeria on November 10, 1942. The air echelon departed for North Africa on November 6, 1942, and flew to Tafaraoui airfield, Algeria from November 10 to 14, 1942

From bases in Algeria, and later Tunisia, the group flew escort, strafing, and reconnaissance missions from the middle of November 1942 to late in January 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 April 2, 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 August 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 September 9, 1945.

Cold War

Activated in the US on November 20, 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 October 2, 1949. Redesignated 14th Fighter Group (Air Defense). Reativated on August 18, 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 May 23, 1960.

Modern era

On 9 December 1991, the 14th Operations Group was activated as a result of the 14th Flying Training Wing implementing the USAF objective wing organization. Upon activation, the 14th OG was bestowed the lineage and history of the 14th Fighter Group. The 14th OG was assigned flying components of the 14th FTW.

From activation, the group 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 January 27, 1995, Second Lieutenant Kelly Flinn graduated from pilot training with the 14th Operations Group on her way to becoming the first woman to enter B-52 Stratofortress combat crew training.

References

PD-icon.svg This article incorporates public domain material from websites or documents of the Air Force Historical Research Agency.

  • 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.

External links


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