Little Rock Air Force Base: Wikis

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Little Rock Air Force Base

Air Mobility Command.png
Part of Air Mobility Command (AMC)

Little Rock AFB AR - 5 Apr 2000.jpg
USGS aerial photo as of April 5, 2000
IATA: LRFICAO: KLRFFAA: LRF
Summary
Airport type Military: Air Force Base
Owner U.S. Air Force
Location Jacksonville, Arkansas
Built 1955
Commander Colonel Gregory S. Otey, USAF
Occupants 314th Airlift Wing
Elevation AMSL 311 ft / 95 m
Coordinates 34°55′01″N 092°08′47″W / 34.91694°N 92.14639°W / 34.91694; -92.14639
Website www.littlerock.af.mil
Runways
Direction Length Surface
ft m
69/249 3,482 1,061 Asphalt
7/25 12,000 3,658 Concrete
Sources: official web site[1] and FAA[2]
Little Rock AFB is located in Arkansas
Little Rock AFB
Location of Little Rock AFB, Arkansas
C-130s of the 19th Airlift Wing, Little Rock AFB

Little Rock Air Force Base (IATA: LRFICAO: KLRFFAA LID: LRF) is a United States Air Force facility located one mile (2 km) northwest of the central business district, within the city limits of Jacksonville, in Pulaski County, Arkansas, United States.[2]

Contents

Overview

It is the only C-130 training base for the Department of Defense, training C-130 pilots, navigators, flight engineers, and loadmasters from all branches of the US military as well as 28 allied nations, in tactical airlift and aerial delivery.

Little Rock AFB is home to C-130E, C-130H and C-130J aircraft, as well as the C-130 Center of Excellence (i.e., schools for C-130E/H and C-130J crews).

Little Rock AFB is populated by over 6,000 military personnel and another 2,000 civilians. The 19th Airlift Wing (19 AW) of the Air Mobility Command (AMC) is the host wing, having assumed that role from the 314th Airlift Wing (314 AW) of the Air Education and Training Command (AETC) on October 1, 2008. With the assumption of operational control by the 19 AW and AMC, the 314 AW became a tenant unit. Other organizations at Little Rock AFB include AMC's 19th Airlift Group, the 189th Airlift Wing of the Arkansas Air National Guard, and the U.S. Air Force Mobility Weapons School. All four of these organizations fly the C-130 Hercules.

History

Little Rock Air Force Base was authorized in 1953 and opened on January 24, 1955. Communications and several storage buildings, JATO facility, ordnance igloos, track and loading platform were completed by June 30, 1955, and the base was opened to limited air traffic on September 9, 1955. The base headquarters facility was accepted January 31, 1956, and all runways and other operational concrete areas were completed by January 1957.

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Major Commands to which assigned

Attached to: Air Education and Training Command, April 1, 1997 – Present

Major Units assigned

  • 70th Strategic Reconnaissance Wing, January 24, 1955 – October 25, 1961
Redesignated: 70th Bombardment Wing, October 25, 1961 – June 25, 1962
Redesignated: 825 Strategic Aerospace Division, June 1, 1962 – April 1, 1970
Redesignated: 314th Military Airlift Wing, 1974–1991
Redesignated: 314th Airlift Wing, 1991–Present

References for history introduction, major commands and major units[3]

Operational History

Construction of Little Rock Air Force Base began on November 6, 1953 and the base was officially activated by Strategic Air Command (SAC) on August 1, 1955, hosting SAC's 384th Bombardment Wing (384 BMW) flying the Boeing B-47E Stratojet and the 70th Reconnaissance Wing (70 RW) flying the RB-47 Stratojet and KC-97 Stratotanker.

In 1960, the Air Force announced that Little Rock Air Force Base would house 18 Titan II Intercontinental Ballistic Missiles located throughout the state of Arkansas. In 1961, the 70 RW was redesignated as the 70th Bombardment Wing (Medium) and converted to the B-47, but was deactivated the following year before being declared combat ready.

In September 1962, the 154th Tactical Reconnaissance Squadron of the Arkansas Air National Guard relocated to Little Rock AFB and reorganized as the 189th Tactical Reconnaissance Group (189 TRG). In October, the 384 BMW deployed 11 B-47 Stratojet aircraft to civilian municipal airports around the nation for dispersal alert purposes during in the Cuban Missile Crisis. Also in 1962, SAC established the 308th Strategic Missile Wing (308 SMW) as the host organization for Little Rock AFB's Titan II missile operations, with the first of the Titan II missiles installed at a site in Searcy, Arkansas in February 1963.

In September 1964, the 384 BW deactivated following the retirement of the B-47 from front-line service in SAC. That same year, SAC's 43d Bombardment Wing transferred from Carswell AFB, Texas with its B-58 Hustler aircraft. The 43 BW would continue to operate at Little Rock until the B-58's withdrawal from operational service in January 1970.

In June 1965, Little Rock's 189 TRG became the first Air National Guard unit to operate the RF-101 Voodoo and by December, had assumed the RF-101 Replacement Training Unit (RTU) mission for the entire Air Force. The same year, the base and associated flying units also participated in various relief efforts such as a tornado that ripped through Conway, Arkansas in April and Hurricane Betsy in Louisiana in September.

In the 1970s the base went through significant changes, with the first C-130s arriving in March 1970. On March 31, 1970, Little Rock Air Force Base officially transferred from SAC to Tactical Air Command (TAC), with TAC's 314th Tactical Airlift Wing (314 TAW) taking over host wing responsibilities. Although SAC's 308 SMW and its Titan II ICBMs continued to be a major tenant, the base's primary mission became C-130 tactical airlift operations and training, with two operational C-130 squadrons assigned and two C-130 training squadrons assigned. In 1974, following the divestiture of C-130 tactical airlift aircraft from TAC, both the 314 TAW and Little Rock AFB transferred from TAC control to that of the Military Airlift Command (MAC).

On January 1, 1976, the 189 TRG transferred being a TAC-gained unit to a SAC-gained unit when it converted to the KC-135 Stratotanker and was redesignated the 189th Air Refueling Group (189 ARG), becoming one of the first Air National Guard units to be assigned to Strategic Air Command with a concomitant requirement to maintain a 24-hour alert force at Little Rock as well as deployments to support worldwide tanker task forces.

On October 1, 1986, the 189 ARG saw yet another mission change when it was redesignated as the 189th Tactical Airlift Group (189 TAG) and converted to the C-130 aircraft, with transfer of operational claimancy to MAC.

During the 1991 Gulf War, the 314 TAW's two operational C-130 squadrons and the 189 TAG's C-130 squadron supported operations from both the middle east and European theaters. Later that year, the 314th Tactical Airlift Wing was redesignated as the 314th Airlift Wing (314 AW), and following the disestablishment of MAC in 1992, the base and the 314 AW were transferred to the new Air Mobility Command (AMC). The 189 TAG was also redesignated as the 189th Airlift Group (189 AG) the same year, followed by redesignation as the 189th Airlift Wing (189 AW) in 1995. In 1993, the base and the 314 AW transferred to Air Combat Command (ACC), as part the U.S. Air Force's decision to transfer continental U.S. based C-130s from AMC to ACC. In 1997, the U.S. Air Force reversed this decision, returning most C-130 airlift back to AMC claimancy. However, given the 314 AW's primary training mission as the Formal Training Unit (FTU) for C-130s, the base and the 314 AW were transferred to the Air Education and Training Command (AETC), and the base's two operational Regular Air Force C-130 squadrons were organized under the 463d Airlift Group, an AMC unit.

From the mid 1990s to the late 1990s, the 314 AW and the 463 AG supported the air war over Serbia and since the September 11, 2001 attacks, the 463 AG has supported both Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Iraqi Freedom.

In its 50-year history, Little Rock Air Force Base has been operated by six Air Force Major Commands (MAJCOMs): SAC, TAC, MAC, AMC, ACC, and AETC. These represent every possible MAJCOM a continental U.S. based operational flying base could have been assigned to with the one exception being the former Air Defense Command/Aerospace Defense Command.

References

  1. ^ Little Rock Air Force Base, official web site
  2. ^ a b FAA Airport Master Record for LRF (Form 5010 PDF), effective 2007-12-20
  3. ^ Mueller, Robert (1989). Volume 1: Active Air Force Bases Within the United States of America on 17 September 1982. USAF Reference Series, Office of Air Force History, United States Air Force, Washington, D.C. ISBN 0912799536; 0160022614

External links


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