57th Operations Group: Wikis

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57th Operations Group
57thopsgroup-emblem.jpg
Active 1940-1968;1991-Present
Country United States
Branch United States Air Force
Type Fighter; Interceptor; Operational Test and Evaluation
Garrison/HQ Nellis Air Force Base
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 DUC
Outstanding Unit ribbon.svg AFOUA
Ruban de la croix de guerre 1939-1945.PNG FCdG w/ Palm
Lockheed P-80 Shooting Stars of the 57th Fighter-interceptor Group on the ramp at Elmendorf AFB, Alaska, 1950

The 57th Operations Group (57 OG) is a non-flying component of the 57th Wing, assigned to the United States Air Force Air Combat Command. The group is stationed at Nellis Air Force Base, Nevada.

Contents

Overview

The 57th Operations Group provides direct oversight of the Nellis flying mission through the 57th Operations Support Squadron. They manage the airfield, operate the air traffic control tower, and the Nellis Air Traffic Control Facility providing radar service to local flying operations and the National Airspace System. It is responsible for scheduling, training, life support, weapons, tactics and planning staff functions. In addition to these functions, it also maintains administrative oversight of the 57th ATG staff and the 57th Wing staff.

The 57th OG also directs execution of two of the world's premier combat training exercises, RED FLAG and GREEN FLAG.

Units

The 57th Operations Group is a non-flying organization. On 1 Jul 2005, the flying squadrons of the 57 OG were split off into the new 57th Adversary Tactics Group.

Current units assigned to the group are:

  • 6th Combat Training Squadron (6 CTS)
Both the squadron at Nellis and Det. 1, 6th CTS at Fort Sill, Okla., provide academic instruction in air ground operations through the Joint Firepower Course.
  • 57th Operations Support Squadron (57 OSS)
A functionally diverse squadron of nearly 200 personnel organized in four flights: Weapons and Training, Current Operations, Weather and Airfield Operations. Responsible for all airfield operations support at Air Combat Command’s busiest and most complex base. Provided trained and qualified personnel to operate the USAF's largest air traffic control (ATC) complex. Integrated operations from three wings, four groups, and eleven squadrons, ensuring successful wing programs to include operational plans, scheduling, training, and munitions allocation.
  • 12th Combat Training Squadron (12 CTS)
Located at the U.S. Army's National Training Center, Fort Irwin, Calif. The unit is designated "Team Raven" within the NTC operations group. The mission of Team Raven is threefold. It acts as the division liaison element for the NTC operations group and the deployed brigade tactical air control parties.
Conducts RED FLAG-Nellis on the Nevada Test and Training Range involving USAF aircraft and the aircraft of many different allied nations.
  • 548th Combat Training Squadron (Green Flag East) (548 CTS)
Execute the Air Combat Command-sponsored Green Flag East exercise, providing operational control, safe employment and realistic training for all Air Force participants at the U.S. Army Joint Readiness Training Center, Fort Polk, La
  • 549th Combat Training Squadron (Green Flag West) (549 CTS)
Execute the Air Combat Command-sponsored Green Flag West exercise, providing operational control, safe employment and realistic training for all Air Force participants at the National Training Center, Fort Irwin, Calif

History

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Lineage

  • Established as 57th Pursuit Group (Interceptor) on 20 Nov 1940
Activated on 15 Jan 1941
Redesignated 57th Fighter Group on 15 May 1942
Inactivated on 7 Nov 1945
Activated on 15 Aug 1946*
  • Redesignated 57th Fighter-Interceptor Group on 20 Jan 1950
Inactivated on 13 Apr 1953
  • Redesignated 57th Fighter Group (Air Defense), and activated, on 24 Feb 1961**
Organized on 1 Apr 1961 by redesignation of 326th Fighter Group
Inactivated on 30 Sept 1968
  • Redesignated: 57th Fighter-Weapons Group on 31 Jul 1985 (remained inactive)
  • Redesignated: 57th Operations Group on 1 Nov 1991
Activated on 1 Nov 1991.

*Note: Became subordinate component of the 57th Fighter Wing on 20 April 1948.
**Was subordinate unit (not attached to wing) of Air Defense Command 24 Feb 1961, then Seattle Air Defense Sector 1 Apr 1961-30 Sep 1968

Assignments

Attached to Desert Air Task Force, 22 Oct 1942
Attached to: Western Desert Air Force, 21 Feb 1943
Attached to: Desert Air Force, c. Apr 1943
Attached to: 7 South African Air Force, 21 May 1943
Attached to: XII Air Support Command, 22 Aug 1943
Attached to 64th Fighter Wing, 2 Mar 1944
  • XII Air Support Command (later, XXII Tactical Air Command), 5 Mar 1944
Remained attached to 64th Fighter Wing until 28 Mar 1944
  • 87th Fighter Wing, 23 Apr 1944
  • XII Tactical Air Command, 10 Sept 1944
  • XII Fighter (later, XII Tactical Air) Command, 15 Sept 1944
  • Twelfth Air Force, 7 Jun-7 Aug 1945
  • Unknown, 8-22 Aug 1945
  • Third Air Force, 23 Aug-7 Nov 1945
  • Alaskan Air Command, 15 Aug 1946
Attached to Yukon Sector, Alaskan Air Command, 16-21 Apr 1947
  • Headquarters, Fort Richardson, Alaska [later, 57th Fighter Wing, Provisional], 20 Nov 1947-19 Apr 1948)
  • 57th Fighter Wing, 20 Apr 1948
Attached to 10th Air Division [Defense], 10 Dec 1950
Remained attached to 10th Air Division [Defense] until 1 Mar 1951

Components

Stations

Aircraft assigned

Operational History

World War II

P-40C of the 57th Pursuit Group, probably taken at Windsor Locks, CT, 1941
Pilots of the 64th FS, 57th FG, in North Africa, April 1943.
P-47D of the 57th Fighter Group, Italy, 1944

The 57th Pursuit Group trained with P-40s on the east coast of the United States before and just after the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. It moved to the Middle East in July and August 1942 and trained with the British Commonwealth Desert Air Force. In October 1942, it began combat operations. The group took part in the Battle of El Alamein and, as part of 9th Air Force, supported the Commonwealth Eighth Army's drive across Egypt and Libya, escorting bombers and flying strafing and dive-bombing missions against airfields, communications, and troop concentrations until Axis defeat in Tunisia in May 1943. After the group destroyed more than 70 of the enemy's transport and fighter aircraft in an aerial battle over the Gulf of Tunis on April 18, 1943, it received a Distinguished Unit Citation. The unit participated in the reduction of Pantelleria (May-June 1943) and the conquest of Sicily (July-August 1943). For front-line operations in direct support of the Eighth Army from the Battle of El Alamein to the capitulation of enemy forces in Sicily, the group received another Distinguished Unit Citation.

The 57th supported the British Eighth Army's landing at Termoli and subsequent operations in Italy (October 1943 – February 1944) by flying dive-bombing strafing, patrol, and escort missions. Early in 1944, the group converted to P-47 aircraft and flew interdiction operations in Italy. The group moved to Corsica on March 30, 1944 to operate as a separate task force. It flew interdiction missions against railroads, communication targets, and motor vehicles behind enemy lines, providing a minimum of 48 fighter-bomber sorties per day. During 9 days of combat operations during early April 1944, the 57th exceeded 50 sorties per day. It earned a third Distinguished Unit Citation c. April 14, 1944 for attacks in the Florence-Arezzo area. The group participated in the French campaign against Elba in June 1944 and in the invasion of Southern France in August. It engaged in interdiction and support operations in northern Italy from September 1944 to May 1945. For its operations in the Mediterranean Theater of Operations, the 57th earned the French Croix de Guerre (Cross of War) with Palm (awarded in late 1967).

Cold War

Beginning in August 1946 it provided air defense in the Alaskan area from Elmendorf Air Force Base. In addition, the wing provided intra-theater troop carrier and airlift support, 1948–1950, using several attached troop carrier squadrons. In January 1951, it was replaced by 39th Air Depot Wing.

From April 1961 – September 1968 the group provided air defense for the Seattle, Washington, area as part of Air Defense Command. In 1968 the group was inactivated.

Modern era

On 1 November 1991, the 57th Operations Group was activated as a result of the 57th Fighter Wing implementing the USAF objective wing organization. Upon activation, the 57th OG was bestowed the lineage and history of the 57th Fighter Group. The 57 OG was assigned control of the wing's tactical units.

Since its activation, 57th Operations Group managed Air Force tactical training through Red Flag and Air Warrior exercises. Between Jul 1995 and Mar 2002, the group gained the three reconnaissance squadrons equipped with Predator RQ-1A Unmanned Aerial Vehicles. The Group deployed elements of the 11th and 15th Squadrons in support of operations in Bosnia (Apr 2000), Kuwait (Oct 2000), and Pakistan, Sept 2001-Jan 2002 in support of Enduring Freedom. The 57th Group's 66th Helicopter Squadron also deployed for operations in Northern Watch and Enduring Freedom. While at Nellis, the Group continued to provide air combat units for US and Allies with realistic, large force combat training at Red Flag.

On 1 Jul 2005, the flying squadrons of the 57 OG were split off into the new 57th Adversary Tactics Group, which consolidated all Aggressor activities under one group is to provide the Combat Air Forces with the opportunity to train against a realistic, fully integrated threat array during large- and small-scale exercises such as Red Flag - Nellis, Red Flag - Alaska, Maple Flag, Green Flag and dissimilar air combat training deployments.

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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