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28th Operations Group
Emblem of the 28th Operations Group
Active 1940-1945; 1946-1952; 1991-Present
Country United States
Branch United States Air Force
Rockwell B-1B Lancer Lot IV (85-060) of the 34th Bomb Squadron
Rockwell B-1B Lancer Lot V (86-104) of the 37th Bomb Squadron
28th Operations Group Gaggle. Gaggle consists of (clockwise from top left): 34th Bomb Squadron, 28th Operations Support Squadron, 37th Bomb Squadron and 28th Operations Group.

The 28th Operations Group (28 OG) is the flying component of the United States Air Force 28th Bomb Wing, stationed at Ellsworth Air Force Base, South Dakota.

The 28 OG controls two B-1B Lancer bomb squadrons, and provides combat-ready aircrews to project global power anytime in support of the Combatant Commander's objectives.

The group carries the lineage and history of the World War II 28th Bombardment Group, which was one of the primary units assigned to Eleventh Air Force during the Aleutian Campaign. The group helped force the withdrawal of Japanese ships that attacked Dutch Harbor in Jun 1942, and flew missions against Kiska until the Japanese evacuated that island in Aug 1943.

On 4 August 1946, the 28th became one of the original ten bombardment groups of Strategic Air Command.



  • 28th Operations Support Squadron
Ensures wing combat readiness for worldwide operational taskings. Plans and supports combat operations and deployments for two tactical B-1 squadrons. Provides deployable planning and support teams for B-1 employment. Manages base airfield and radar approach control facility. Provides air traffic control, weather, airspace management, intelligence, life support, simulator, scheduling and maintenance analysis.

The 34th and the 37th bomb squadrons carry the legacy of the 1942 Doolittle Raiders. The raiders were drawn from the World War II version of the 95th, 34th, 37th and the 89th reconnaissance squadrons of the 17th Bombardment Group. The modern-day Doolittle Raiders were one of the first USAF squadrons to attack against the Taliban in Afghanistan a month after the 11 Sep 2001 terrorist attacks.


For additional lineage and history, see 28th Bomb Wing


  • Established as 28 Composite Group on 22 Dec 1939
Activated on 1 Feb 1940
Redesignated 28 Bombardment Group (Composite) on 11 Dec 1943
Inactivated on 20 Oct 1945
  • Redesignated 28 Bombardment Group, Very Heavy on 15 Jul 1946
Activated on 4 Aug 1946
Redesignated: 28 Bombardment Group, Medium on 28 May 1948
Redesignated: 28 Bombardment Group, Heavy on 16 May 1949
Redesignated: 28 Strategic Reconnaissance Group on 1 Apr 1950
Redesignated: 28 Strategic Reconnaissance Group, Heavy on 16 Jul 1950
Inactivated on 16 Jun 1952
  • Redesignated: 28 Bombardment Group, Heavy on 31 Jul 1985 (Remained inactive)
  • Redesignated: 28 Operations Group on 29 Aug 1991
Activated on 1 Sep 1991.
  • Designated as 28th Air Expeditionary Group and in provisional status when components deployed to combat areas after 11 September 2001.


Attached to: Air Field Forces, Alaska Defense Command, 21 May-16 Oct 1941
Attached to: Air Force, Alaska Defense Command, 17 Oct 1941-14 Jan 1942
Attached to Provisional XI Bomber Command, c. 5 Feb 1942-18 Mar 1943
Attached to Alaskan Air Command, 20 Oct 1946-
Remained attached to Alaskan Air Command to 3 Feb 1947
Attached to 3d Air Division, 19 Jul-18 Oct 1948
Assigned to 28th Air Expeditionary Wing when group components deployed to combat areas after 11 Sep 2001.


  • 4 Airborne Command and Control: 1 Sep 1991-30 Sep 1992
  • 11 Pursuit (later, 11 Fighter): 2 Feb-7 Jun 1942
  • 18 Pursuit (later, 18 Fighter): 24 Feb 1941-7 Jun 1942
  • 21 Bombardment: attached 9 Jan 1942-c. 19 Sep 1943
  • 28 Air Refueling: 1 Sep 1991-1 Jun 1992
  • 34 Bomb: 19 Sep 2002-Present
  • 34 Pursuit: 1 Feb-30 Nov 1940
  • 36 Bombardment: 1 Feb 1940-19 Oct 1943
  • 37 Bombardment (later, 37 Bomb): 1 Feb 1940-23 Apr 1941; 1 Sep 1991-Present
  • 73 Bombardment: 3 May 1941-6 Oct 1943
  • 77 Bombardment (later, 77 Strategic Reconnaissance; 77 Bomb): 2 Jan 1942-20 Oct 1945; 4 Aug 1946-16 Jun 1952 (detached 10 Feb 1951-16 Jun 1952); 1 Sep 1991-31 Mar 1995; 1 Apr 1997-19 Sep 2002.
  • 404 Bombardment: attached c. 12 Jul-c. 20 Sep 1942, assigned c. 21 Sep 1942-20 Oct 1945
  • 406 Bombardment: attached c. Jun 1942-c. Oct 1943
  • 717 Bombardment (later, 717 Strategic Reconnaissance): 4 Aug 1946-16 Jun 1952 (detached 10 Feb 1951-16 Jun 1952)
  • 718 Bombardment (later, 718 Strategic Reconnaissance): 4 Aug 1946-16 Jun 1952 (detached 10 Feb 1951-16 Jun 1952).


Deployed at RAF Scampton, England, 19 Jul-19 Oct 1948
Deploys to: Diego Garcia for Air Expeditionary duty, 11 Sep 2001-Present



World War II

Organized in February 1940 after outbreak of World War II in Europe. Moved to Alaska one year later, where it trained for Arctic warfare and served to defend the territory after Japan attacked the United States at the end of 1941.

The group helped force the withdrawal of Japanese ships that attacked Dutch Harbor in June 1942, flew missions against occupied Kiska until the Japanese evacuated that island in August 1943, bombed and strafed enemy shipping, harbor facilities, canneries, fisheries, and military installations in the Kurils, and flew photographic reconnaissance missions. Earned a Distinguished Unit Citation for attacks on the Kurils that caused Japan to divert some of her air power to that northern area, weakening Japanese opposition to Allied forces to the south, April 1944 – August 1945. Flew its last World War II bombing mission on August 13, 1945, but continued reconnaissance operations in the Kurils into September 1945.

Inactivated in October 1945, but activated a few months later in Nebraska. Received B-29 Superfortresses and personnel from inactivated 449th Bombardment Group. Reassigned to Elmendorf AAF, Alaska for six months of post-war arctic operations in Alaska.

Cold War

On May 3, 1947, the group and its subordinate units relocated to Rapid City Army Air Field (later Ellsworth AFB) and awaited the activation of the new headquarters to which they would soon be assigned: the 28th Bombardment Wing.

The 28th Bomb Wing was established on July 28, 1947 under the "Hobson Plan", which was designed to streamline the peacetime forces after WWII. The wing existed only on paper until August 15, 1947 when SAC organized it under the 15th Air Force. Upon its activation, the wing included the 28 Bombardment Group (Heavy), 28th Airdrome Group (now Support Group), 28th Maintenance and Supply Group (Now Logistics Group), 28th Station Medical Group, and the 612th Army Air Forces Band.

On July 12, 1948, in its first of many name changes, SAC activated the organization as the 28th Bombardment Wing, Medium. Just one week later, the wing deployed the entire 28th Bombardment Group and its 77th, 717th, and 718th Bombardment Squadrons (BS) to England for a 90 day B-29 show-of-force mission during the Soviet blockade of Berlin. The wing flew the B-29 until 1950 and maintained proficiency in heavy global bombardment.

Shortly after additional runway improvements, in July 1949, the 28 BMW began conversion from B-29s to the RB-36 Peacemaker. In April 1950 the Air Staff reassigned the base from 15th Air Force to 8th Air Force. With the change in aircraft also came a modified mission: global strategic reconnaissance with bombardment as a secondary tasking. The wing’s name changed again in April 1950, this time to the 28th Strategic Reconnaissance Wing, Heavy. Meanwhile intermediate command assignments changed from the 15th to the 8th Air Force. In May 1951 the wing flew a record setting B-36 training mission lasting 41 hours without refueling. In June 1952, SAC inactivated the old 28th BG and assigned its squadrons directly under the 28 BW as part of the Tri-Deputate Organization.


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.
  • 28th Operations Group Factsheet


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