4th Air Division: Wikis

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4th Air Division
Division 004th Air.jpg
4th Air Division emblem
Active 19 October 1940 – 1 October 1941
7 June 1942 – 18 June 1945
31 December 1946 – 27 June 1949
1 February 1951 – 16 June 1952
16 June 1952 – 23 August 1988
Country United States
Branch United States Air Force
Garrison/HQ see "Stations" section below
Equipment see "Aircraft / Missiles / Space Vehicles" section below
Decorations see "Lineage and Honors" section below

The 4th Air Division (4th AD) is an inactive United States Air Force unit. Its last assignment was with Fifteenth Air Force, stationed at Francis E. Warren AFB, Wyoming. It was inactivated on 23 August 1988.

As the 4th Bombardment Wing, the unit was one of the primary B-17 Flying Fortress heavy strategic bombardment wings of VIII Bomber Command and later, Eighth Air Force in World War II.

During the Cold War, the 4th AD was an intermediate command echelon of Strategic Air Command, controlling strategic bombardment and intercontinental strategic missile wings until inactivated in 1988.

Contents

History

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Lineage

  • Established as 4 Bombardment Wing on 19 Oct 1940
Activated on 18 Dec 1940
Inactivated on 1 Oct 1941
  • Activated on 7 Jun 1942
Redesignated as: 4 Combat Bombardment Wing (Heavy) on 30 Aug 1943
Redesignated as: 4 Combat Bombardment Wing, Heavy on 24 Aug 1944
Disestablished on 18 Jun 1945
  • Reestablished, and redesignated 4 Bombardment Wing, Light on 31 Dec 1946
Activated in the Reserve on 20 Dec 1946
Redesignated 4 Air Division, Bombardment on 16 Apr 1948
Inactivated on 27 Jun 1949
  • Redesignated 4 Air Division on 1 Feb 1951
Organized (Table of Distribution) on 10 Feb 1951
Discontinued on 16 Jun 1952
  • Activated (Table of Organization) on 16 Jun 1952
Redesignated as: 4 Strategic Aerospace Division on 1 Sept 1964
Redesignated as: 4 Strategic Missile Division on 30 Jun 1971
Redesignated as: 4 Air Division on 1 Mar 1973
Inactivated on 23 Aug 1988.

Assignments

  • General Headquarters (GHQ) Air Force, 18 Dec 1940-1 Oct 1941.
Apparently further assigned to Northeast Air District (later, First Air Force) c. 16 Jan 1941

Components

Wings

  • 2 Bombardment: 1 Apr 1963-1 Sept 1964
  • 28 Bombardment: 15 Jan 1973-1 May 1982
  • 44 Strategic Missile: 30 Jun 1971-1 May 1982; 23 Jan 1987-15 Jul 1988
  • 55 Strategic Reconnaissance: 1 Oct 1976-1 Apr 1980
  • 90 Strategic Missile: 30 Jun 1971-23 Aug 1988
  • 91 Strategic Reconnaissance (later, 91 Strategic Missile): 10 Feb-11 Sept 1951; 30 Jun 1971-30 Nov 1972
  • 92 Strategic Aerospace: 31 Mar 1970-30 Jun 1971
  • 97 Bombardment: 1 Jul 1959-1 Jul 1963
  • 301 Bombardment (later, 301 Air Refueling): 10 Feb 1951-15 Apr 1958 (detached 3 Dec 1951-c. 4 Mar 1953; c. 10 Feb-c. 17 Apr 1954); 5 Jan-23 Aug 1988
  • 319 Bombardment: 1 Sept 1964-30 Jun 1971; 15 Jan 1973-22 Jan 1975; 1 May 1982-23 Jan 1987
  • 321 Strategic Missile: 1 Nov 1964-22 Jan 1975; 1 May 1982-23 Jan 1987
  • 340 Bombardment: 1 Sept 1963-1 Sept 1964 (detached c. 1-31 Aug 1964). 321 Strategic Missile: 1 Nov 1964-22 Jan 1975; 1 May 1982-23 Jan 1987
  • 341 Strategic Missile: 30 Jun 1971-15 Jan 1973; 23 Jan 1987-23 Aug 1988
  • 351 Strategic Missile: 30 Jun 1971-1 Jul 1973
  • 376 Bombardment: 1 Jun 1951-3 Dec 1957 (detached 1 Jun-10 Oct 1951)
  • 401 Provisional Combat Wing Bombardment: 6 Jun-14 Sept 1943
  • 410 Bombardment: 1 Sept 1964-31 Mar 1970
  • 454 Bombardment: 1 Feb-1 Jul 1963
  • 494 Bombardment: 1 Jul 1963-1 Jul 1964
  • 4130 Strategic: 1 Jul-l Sept 1963
  • 4228 Strategic: 1 Jul 1958-1 Feb 1963
  • 4238 Strategic: 1 Mar 1958-1 Apr 1963.

Groups

Squadron

  • 376 Air Refueling Squadron: 1 Dec 1957-15 Apr 1958.

Stations

Aircraft and missiles

Operations

The 4th Bombardment Wing moved to England in 1943 and as a part of Eighth Air Force began bombing operations against German occupied Europe. Targets included shipyards, synthetic rubber plants, chemical plants, marshalling yards, and oil facilities. In 1944, some subordinate units attacked coastline defenses and marshalling yards in preparation for the Allied invasion of France. Some units supported ground troops during the Battle of the Bulge (December 1944 – January 1945) and the assault across the Rhine (March 1945 – April 1945).

In the postwar years, the command was part of Air Defense Command assigned as a reserve wing assigned to First Air Force (1946-1949)

Rectivated in 1951 as an intermediate command echelon of Strategic Air Command, the 4th Air Division was part of Second Air Force, controlling B-29, B-50 and B-47 wings. In 1962, units controlled by the 4th Air Division supported 2d Air Force's post attack command and control system, and became responsible for the Advanced Airborne Command Post. It participated in the Cuban missile crisis of 1962 and trained in electronic countermeasures and conducted combat operations in Southeast Asia in the late 1960s.

Reassigned to SAC's Fifteenth Air Force in 1970, the the 4th assured that assigned units were capable of conducting strategic aerospace warfare using intercontinental ballistic missiles, long-range bombardment, and air refueling resources, according to the Emergency War Order. In addition, the division assumed airborne command and control responsibilities that consisted of supporting auxiliary airborne command post aircraft.

Inactivated in 1988 as a result of budget reductions and a consolidation of SAC's command and control echelons.

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.
  • Air Force Historical Research Agency: 4th Air Division

External links


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