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116th Air Control Wing
116th ACW E-8C Joint STARS 96-0042.jpg
116th Air Control Wing E-8C Joint STARS 96-0042.jpg
Active 1 October 1942 – present
Country  United States
Allegiance  Georgia (U.S. state)
Branch US-AirNationalGuard-2007Emblem.svg  Air National Guard
Type Wing
Role Airborne Command and Control
Part of Georgia Air National Guard
Garrison/HQ Robins Air Force Base, Warner-Robins, Georgia
Nickname(s) Slybird Group (WW II)
Motto(s) Vincet Amor Patriae (Love of Country Shall Conquer)
Tail Code GA
  • World War II
European Campaign (1943–1945)
(As 353d Fighter Group)
  • Korean Service (1951–1952)
  • Vietnam Service (1965–1972)
  • Global War on Terrorism
    (Dates TBD)
Decorations European-African-Middle Eastern Campaign ribbon.svg
KSMRib.svg Vietnam Service Ribbon.svg Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary ribbon.svg
116th Air Control Wing emblem 116th Air Control Wing.png

The 116th Air Control Wing (116 ACW) is a unit of the Georgia Air National Guard, stationed at Robins Air Force Base, Georgia. If activated to federal service, the Wing is gained by the United States Air Force Air Combat Command.

The 128th Airborne Command and Control Squadron assigned to the Wing's 116th Operations Group, is a descendant organization of the World War I 840th Aero Squadron, established on 1 February 1918. It was reformed on 1 May 1941, as the 128th Observation Squadron, one of the 29 original National Guard Observation Squadrons of the United States Army National Guard formed before World War II.


The 116th ACW is the only Air National Guard unit operating the E-8C Joint Surveillance Target Attack Radar System (Joint STARS), an advanced ground surveillance and battle management system. Joint STARS detects, locates, classifies, tracks and targets ground movements on the battlefield, communicating real-time information through secure data links with U.S. Forces command posts.

On 1 October 2002, the 116th ACW was established as the first (and only) Joint Air National Guard/United States Air Force Unit. The Joint Unit was inactivated on 30 September 2011 and the 116th ACW was returned to the sole jurisdiction of the Georgia Air National Guard on 1 October 2011.


  • 116th Operations Group
128th Airborne Command and Control Squadron
12th Airborne Command and Control Squadron
16th Airborne Command and Control Squadron
330th Combat Training Squadron
  • 116th Maintenance Group
  • 116th Mission Support Group
  • 116th Medical Group


World War II

World War II 353d Fighter Group Emblem

The group was organized as the 353d Fighter Group (FG) at Mitchel Field, New York, although it did not receive any pilots until it moved to Richmond AAB, Virginia.[1] The group trained in the Mid-Atlantic states during 1942–1943 while also serving as an air defense organization.[2] Its original squadrons were the 350th,[3] 351st,[4] and 352d Fighter Squadrons.[5] The group was equipped with Curtiss P-40N Warhawks that had been used by other units, but in February 1943, it began receiving Republic P-47B Thunderbolts.[1]

Republic P-47D Thunderbolt (LH-E) of the 350th Fighter Squadron

The 353d moved to England May through June 1943, where it was assigned to the 66th Fighter Wing of VIII Fighter Command at Sawston Hall, Cambridge. The group was equipped with newer P-47D Thunderbolts and was the fourth P-47 unit to join the Eighth Air Force.[6] Operations commenced on 9 August 1943 when sixteen planes joined P-47s of the 56th Fighter Group on an uneventful fighter sweep over the Netherlands.[2][7] The group's first mission on its own was a bomber escort mission on 14 August. On the 16th, the group had its first engagement with enemy Me 109 and FW 190 fighters. Unfortunately, the first group commander, Lt. Col. Joseph A. Morris was lost in combat that day.[6] From Metfield the 353d flew numerous counter-air missions and provided escort for bombers that attacked targets in western Europe, made counter-air sweeps over France and the Low Countries, and dive bombed targets in France.[2]

In March 1944 the group commander. Col. Duncan, proposed to Maj Gen. Kepner, the commander of VIII Fighter Command, that a group of pilots be assembled who would be specialists in the art of ground strafing. On 15 March sixteen pilots from the 353d, 355th, 359th and 361st Fighter Groups were assembled under Col. Duncan and nicknamed "Bill's Buzz Boys".[8] These pilots flew P-47s equipped with "paddle blade" propellors which improved the low altitude performance of their Thunderbolts. Until "Bill's Buzz Boys" were disbanded on April 12 they developed tactics for low level strafing attacks on enemy airfields, which prevented the Luftwaffe from shepherding their air defense forces on the ground, in order to use them only when they had an advantage minmizing losses, because the aircraft were vulnerable both in the air and on the ground.[9]

During the Battle of Normandy, the 353d supported the breakthrough at Saint-Lô in July.

The group received the Distinguished Unit Citation for supporting Operation Market Garden, the airborne attack on Arnhem and Nijmegen (Operation Market) and the advance of British Forces to link up with the airhead and attack across the Rhine River (Operation Garden) between 17 and 23 September 1944.[2] On the 17th and 18th the group concentrated on strikes against enemy flak positions threatening the landing of airborne troops, claiming the destruction of 64 flak positions and damage to 22 more in the two days. These attacks also resulted in the loss of two of the group's planes and flak damage to 17 more. After standing down for two days due to weather, the 353d provided top cover to the Douglas C-53 Skytrooper and Douglas C-47 Skytrain aircraft carrying out the operation. While protecting the troop carriers the group claimed 25 victories over enemy fighters attacking the drop and landing zones while losing four more of its P-47s.[10]

P-51D (YJ-V) of the 351st Fighter Squadron

In October 1944, the group converted to the North American P-51 Mustang.[2] The group flew its first Mustang mission escorting Boeing B-17s on 2 October. This mission was the only one in which the group flew both P-47s and P-51s, although Thunderbolts continued to fly separate missions until the conversion was complete.[11] Four days later Lt. C. W. Mueller claimed Eighth Air Force's second victory over a jet-propelled Me 262 fighter.[12]

About this time Raydon was known colloquially as "Bomb Alley" due to the number of German V-1 "Doodlebug" flying bombs which flew directly overhead on their way to London. One V-1 blew up as it went over and the engine narrowly missed the bomb dump in Raydon Great Wood.[citation needed]

The group continued its fighter-bomber, escort, and counter-air activities, participating in the Battle of the Bulge from December 1944 through January 1945 and Operation Varsity, the airborne attack across the Rhine in March 1945.[2] The group had two "aces in a day" on March 24 when Lt. Col. Wayne Blickenstaff and Maj. Robert Elder each claimed five victories. The group encountered a formation of FW 190 aircraft loaded with bombs, with another formation of Me 109s flying top cover for them. The group attacked the enemy formations, claiming a total of 29 destroyed while losing five aircraft. This was the only time in the history of Eighth Air Force when two pilots from the same unit destroyed five or more enemy aircraft in the same engagement.[13]

The 353d's flew its last combat mission (its 448th) on 25 April 1945, when it escorted Royal Air Force and 398th Bombardment Group bombers attacking Berchtesgaden and Pilsen. It had lost 152 aircraft in combat. 50 of the pilots had become prisoners of war or evadees (including group commander, Col. Glenn E. Duncan), but most aircraft losses also involved the loss of the pilot.[14] After the end of hostilities, the group trained and prepared for transfer to the Pacific Theater.[citation needed] With the end of World War II in September, the group left Raydon and transferred back to Camp Kilmer, New Jersey where it was inactivated on 18 October 1945.[2]

After VE day in May 1945, Colonel Glen E. Duncan received a B-17 Flying Fortress from school friend Colonel John B Kidd from the 100th Bomb Group in return for Kidd flying a P-47 Thunderbolt. The B-17 was painted in the 353rd colors (yellow/black checkerboard cowls) and used to fly ground crewmembers over Germany so that they could observe the impact their aircraft had made in the war.[citation needed]

Aerial Victories

Aerial Victories by the 353d Ftr Gp

Aerial Victories Number Note
Group Hq 31 [15]
350th Fighter Squadron 113.5 [16]
351st Fighter Squadron 101 [17]
352d Fighter Squadron 87 [18]
Group Total 332.5

Aces of the 353d Ftr Gp[19]

Name and Rank Number of Aircraft Destroyed Note
Col. Glenn E. Duncan 19.5 [20]
Maj. Walter C. Beckham 18
Lt. Col. Wayne K. Bickenstaff 10
Lt. Col. Kenneth W. Gallup 9 [20]
Maj. Robert A. Elder 9 [20][21]
Capt. James N. Poindexter 7 [20]
Capt. William A. Maguire 7 [20]
Lt. Arthur C. Cundy 6
Capt. Gordon B. Compton 5.5 [20]
Lt. Jesse W. Gonnam 5.5
Capt. Robert W. Abernathy 5 [20]
Capt. Raymond B. Hartley 5 [20][22]
Capt. Gene E. Markham 5 [20]
Capt. William F. Tanner 5 [20]
Capt. Harrison B. Tordoff 5 [20]
Lt. Bayard C. Auchincloss 5 [20]

Aircraft Markings

  • P-47s Yellow and black diamonds on the cowling.
  • P-51s Spinners striped alternately yellow and black. Three rows of yellow and black checks on cowlings (expanded to eight rows in 1945).
350th Fighter Squadron LH, yellow rudders
351st Fighter Squadron YJ, plain rudders
352d Fighter Squadron SX, black rudders[23]

Georgia Air National Guard

The wartime 353d Fighter Group was redesignated as the 116th Fighter Group, and was allotted to the Georgia Air National Guard on 24 May 1946. It was organized at Marietta Army Airfield, Georgia, and was extended federal recognition on 20 August 1946 by the National Guard Bureau. The 116th Fighter Group was entitled to the history, honors, and colors of the 353d Fighter Group. It was assigned to the 54th Fighter Wing.

The 116th Fighter Group consisted of the 128th Fighter Squadron at Marietta AAF, and the 158th Fighter Squadron at Chatam Army Airfield, near Savannah. As part of the Continental Air Command Fourteenth Air Force, the unit trained for tactical fighter missions and air to air combat.

On 1 October 2011 the 116th Air Control Wing was inactivated as a Joint Air National Guard/United States Air Force Unit. Reasons cited were that updated Air Force regulations did not cover the blended unit, leading to issues of how promotions, disciplinary actions and other administrative issues were handled, according to the Air Force[24]

The 116th ACW was returned to the sole jurisdiction of the Georgia Air National Guard on 1 October 2011 and reactivated. The unit's 17 J-STARS aircraft remained under the domain of the Georgia Air National Guard, though the active duty pilots continue to fly with their Guard counterparts.

Combat in Korean War

The 116th Fighter Group was federalized on 10 October 1950 due to the Korean War. It was assigned to Tactical Air Command (TAC) on 1 November and was moved to George AFB, California. At George AFB, the 116th was changed in status to become the 116th Fighter-Bomber Wing on 11 November. The wing was formed with the following operational squadrons:

At George the three fighter squadrons were equipped with F-80C Shooting Stars and began operational training. After losing many of their F-80 pilots to assignment to Far East Air Force (FEAF) as replacements, all three squadrons were forced to transfer pilots between themselves in order to maintain a balance of qualified pilots, and they were no longer individual squadrons of Georgia, Florida and California. In April 1951 116th FBW began receiving brand new F-84E Thunderjets directly from Republic. On 14 May the 116th FBW received a Warning Order for an impending transfer, and they expected to be transferred to Europe. With a Readiness Date of 25 June, the 116th FBW was ready to move, and by 1 July they had sent their seventy-five F-84Es to the New York POE for shipment to France. However, on 3 July 1951 they received orders transferring them to Japan. Fifty-four F-84Es had to be obtained from Bergstrom AFB, Texas and Langley AFB, Virginia as partial replacements for these Thunderjets.

The 116th FBG with the 158th and 159th FBS's departed from San Diego on the transport aircraft carrier USS Windham Bay on 12 July, white the 196th FBS had preceded them by two days on the USS Sitkoh Bay. The USAF, having learned from the expensive previous experience with open air transportation of the F-84 on an aircraft carrier deck, heavily protected their F-84s this time with cosmoline and tarpaulins. The Wing off-loaded at Yokosuka Naval Base, Japan between 24–27 July, with their aircraft being barged to Kisarazu, Japan for cleaning and preparation for flight. Regardless of the care taken, thirty-three F-84s suffered some degree of salt damage.

Two squadrons, the 158th and 159th FBS's were then sent to Misawa Air Base, Japan while the 196th was established at Chitose Air Base, Japan. Their initial role was to serve as an augmentation of Japanese air defenses, and their op¬erational training began on 6 August. The 116th FBW remained on garrison duty in Japan into the Fall of 1951. During this period they concentrated on providing air-to-ground support to Army units training in Japan as well as assisting in providing aerial defense of northern Japan as a supplement to the other air defense units. On 30 November 1951 the 159th FBS was alerted for a combat role, and on 2 December they dispatched sixteen F-84Es to Taegu AB (K-2), South Korea. The 159th FBS flew their first combat mission of twelve Thunderjets to rail targets at Wonsan in southeastern North Korea that morning. Three F-84s suffered flak damage. They then returned again that afternoon. The following day they again returned to Wonsan two fly two more strikes. Further missions were flown on 4 and 5 December, and then on 6 December they sent twelve F-84s to Sinanju and Sunchon, also in North Korea on a rail cutting mission, and then returned to Misawa AB.

158th Fighter Squadron flightline at Tageu AB (K-2), South Korea June 1952.

On 12 December the 1116th FBW pilots flew eighty-eight effective combat sorties. On 25 December 15 the 158th FBS was attacking a train when they were jumped by North Korean MiG-15s that attacked from 20,000 feet in pairs from the F-84s Six O'clock High position. Captain Paul Mitchel, flying as "Able 3" saw two MiGs behind two F-84s, so he came in behind them and closed to 100 feet, firing on the MiG leader's wingman. The MiG pilot bailed out, and his leader slowed down to see what was happening, so Mitchel fired on him, too, scoring some hits. Mitchel was credited with 1-0-1, obtaining the last officially credited F-84 MiG kill during the Korean War, and the only "kill" for the 116th FBW. The following day, 16 December the 158th FBS lost their only aircraft attributed to enemy action during the conflict. While strafing ox carts south of Pyongyang Captain David Mather, "George 3," was hit by antiaircraft fire and his F-84 burst into flames. His wingman told him to bailout, and Mather's canopy was seen to come off, but the F-84 crashed before he could get out. On 18 December the 158th FBS returned to Japan.

The 196th FBS, started for Taegu AB (K-2) on 26 December for their turn, but didn't get there until 28 December, because of weather problems. The 196th FBS flew missions from K-2 until 3 January 1952, mostly close air support, with a 70% accuracy, and returned to Japan on 4 January 1952. The 116th FBG returned to combat on 26 May 1952. The first mission was with sixteen F-84Es that flew from Misawa to Chitose AB for a pilot briefing, and then after arming with 500 pound General Purpose bombs, they took off for an attack against Sariwon, in southwestern North Korea. The F-84s were refueled en route by KB-29 Superfortress tankers near Taegu, South Korea upon their return from the target, which gave any aircraft unable to be aerial refueled an alternate landing spot. After refueling the mission landed at Johnson Air Base, Japan and resumed the air defense mission.

On 10 June 1952 the 116th FBW was relieved from assignment to Tactical Air Command and reassigned to Far East Air Force without personnel. The Guardsmen were returned to the United States, the jets and equipment of the Wing were then re-designated as the 474th Fighter-Bomber Wing and assigned to Fifth Air Force.

Air Defense Command

158th Fighter Squadron F-51H Mustang, 1952

128th Fighter-Interceptor Squadron General Motors F-84F-40-GK Thunderstreak 51-9520

The 116th Fighter-Bomber Group designation was returned to the Georgia Air National Guard on 10 July at Dobbins AFB. At this time the Group was restructured to include the 128th and 158th Fighter Squadrons. Initially upon their return to State Control both squadrons were equipped with the long-range F-51H Mustang and given an air defense mission. The 116th was assigned to Air Defense Command (ADC), being assigned to the 35th Air Division with a mission of the air defense of the Southeastern United States. Commencing in February 1953 the 128th began conversion to F-84D Thunderjet, yet most were not received until mid summer. During the summer of 1955 the 128th was re-designated as the 128th Fighter Interceptor Squadron and converted the swept-wing F-84F Thunderstreak. Strangely enough, it was not until March 1957 that the surviving D models were dispatched for salvage, with eleven of those aged D models having been lost in accidents while serving with the 128th FBS. In 1958, the 116th implemented the ADC Runway Alert Program, in which interceptors of the 128th Fighter-Interceptor Squadron were committed to a five-minute runway alert. In 1960 the F-84s were again replaced by the F-86L Sabre Interceptor, a day/night/all-weather aircraft designed to be integrated into the ADC SAGE interceptor direction and control system.

Air Transport

In 1961, the 116th FIG was reassigned to Military Air Transport Service (MATS), trading in its Sabre interceptors for 4-engines C-97 Stratofreighter transports. With air transportation recognized as a critical wartime need, the squadron was re-designated the 128th Air Transport Squadron (Heavy). The 116th ATG was assigned to the MATS Eastern Transport Air Force, (EASTAF), and the squadron flew long-distance transport missions in support of Air Force requirements, frequently sending aircraft to the Caribbean, Europe Greenland, and the Middle East in support of Air Force requirements. In 1966 MATS became the Military Airlift Command (MAC) and EASTAF became the MAC Twenty-First Air Force. The 116th ATG was upgraded to the C-124 Globemaster II strategic heavy airlifter, being the first Air National Guard unit to receive the aircraft. Due to requirements generated by the Vietnam War, missions were flown across the Pacific to Hawaii, Japan, the Philippines, South Vietnam, Okinawa and Thailand.


25 May 1983 at Dobbins AFB. Republic F-105F-1-RE Thunderchief 63-8299 heading to the boneyard, the last F-105 in USAF service. Next to it is McDonnell F-4D-26-MC Phantom 65–0604, arriving for service with the 128th Tactical Fighter Squadron.

In the years after the Vietnam War, the transport requirements of MAC along with the retirement of the C-124 led the 116th to be reassigned back to Tactical Air Command in 1974 and was re-equipped with F-100 Super Sabre tactical fighter-bombers, many aircraft being veterans of the Vietnam War. The 116th was changed in status from a Group to a Wing with the reassignment to TAC, and the 128th flew the Super Saber jets for six accident-free years until May 1979 when the last aircraft left Dobbins AFB to be retired as part of the phaseout of the F-100 from the inventory. During that time, one F-100D made a crash landing at Dobbins AFB due to its nose gear failing to lower and lock in place shortly before the aircraft were to be retired.

The F-100s were replaced with other Vietnam-era hand-me-down combat veteran aircraft by TAC during the early 1980s, as F-105G Thunderchief Wild Weasel electronic warfare aircraft were assigned, then retired and F-4D Phantom II fighter bombers in their final years of service. In 1986 the 116th retired the last of its Vietnam War Phantoms and received F-15A Eagle air superiority fighters. The F-15A was introduced into the inventory in the mid-1970s and now were being upgraded in the active duty by the improved F-15C. The 128th flew the F-15 for the next ten years. The 116th Tactical Fighter Wing developed an impressive record of accomplishment and was awarded nine Air Force Outstanding Unit Awards.

B-1B Lancer

Four U.S. Air Force Rockwell B-1B Lancer from the 128th Bomb Squadron, 19 April 2002

In 1992 as part of the post Cold-War reorganizations of the Air Force, the 116th converted to the Air Force Objective organization and the 128th was assigned to the new 116th Operations Group. In 1992 Tactical Air Command was inactivated and the 116th was assigned to the new Air Combat Command (ACC).

After calling Dobbins AFB home for 50 years, the 116th was presented with a new challenge in 1996. The wing simultaneously converted from the F-15 Eagle fighters to the B-1B Lancer strategic bomber and moved 110 miles south to Robins AFB in Warner Robins, Georgia. As part of the post Cold-War drawdown, the active-duty fleet of B-1Bs were being reduced for budget reductions and being taken off Alert Status by the former Strategic Air Command (SAC), which itself was inactivated in 1992. Having to make the most of the available facilities, including the former Strategic Air Command alert facility at Robins AFB, the 116th Bomb Wing was quickly up and running and participated in a number of deployments and exercises around the world in the B-1B.

Airborne Command and Control

In order to save money, in 2002 the USAF agreed to reduce its fleet of B-1Bs from 92 to 60 aircraft. The 116th Bomb Wing, having older aircraft was ordered to send its aircraft to "active storage" which meant that they could be quickly returned to service should circumstances dictate. Its first B-1B was flown to AMARC storage at Davis-Monthan AFB, Arizona on 20 August.

Under the Air Force's Total Force Initiative as a "blended" wing. America's first "Total Force" wing, the former 93d Air Control Wing, an active-duty Air Combat Command unit, and the 116th Bomb Wing, a Georgia Air National Guard unit, were inactivated effective 1 October 2002. The 116th was immediately re-activated and re-designated as the 116th Air Control Wing. The 116th ACW was a blend of active-duty and national guard Airmen into a single unit. The 116th ACW was equipped with the new E-8C Joint STARS airborne battle management aircraft. Its mission is command and control, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance. Its primary mission is to provide theater ground and air commanders with ground surveillance to support attack operations and targeting that contributes to the delay, disruption and destruction of enemy forces. The E-8C evolved from Army and Air Force programs to develop, detect, locate and attack enemy armor at ranges beyond the forward area of troops.

116th ACW E-8C Joint STARS 96-004

In 2006, the National Guard Bureau conducted a facility assessment and determined that the 116th CES was residing in the second worst engineering compound in the Air National Guard. This led to another building being identified for the squadron's new compound,and funding being appropriated for a concept study on how to adapt the facility for CES’ needs.[25]

In April 2010, The 116th Air Control Wing became the first ever Georgia Air National Guard unit to send a team to the Mountain Man Memorial March, held in Gatlinburg, Tenn. to honor those who have fallen in combat. The 116th ACW team sponsored Capt. Dixon L. Walters, who was shot down over Kuwait 31 Jan 1991.[26]

The 128th Airborne Command and Control Squadron has flown more than 82,000 combat hours in support of Operation Enduring Freedom, Operation Iraqi Freedom, Operation New Dawn Operation Odyssey Dawn, and Operation Unified Protector. Beginning in 2011, its operational resume expanded to include support of five Combatant Commands including U.S. Pacific Command, U.S. Northern Command and U.S. Southern Command.

On 24 November 2010, the Chief of Staff of the Air Force Designated the 116th Air Control Wing as an "Active Associate" wing and reorganized the "blended" wing concept. As a result of this reorganization, a new active duty Associate Wing was formed. The structure is an Active Association, composed of the Georgia Air Guard's 116th ACW, and active duty's 461st Air Control Wing. They will continue to operate together to accomplish the shared J-STARS mission by integrating Air Guard and active duty personnel to the maximum extent possible in groups, squadrons, and shops. The Active Association model is one in which a reserve component (the Air Guard) has principal responsibility for the weapon system that it shares with one or more Active Duty Units.

On 1 October 2011 the 116th Air Control Wing was inactivated as a Joint Air National Guard/United States Air Force Unit. Reasons cited were that updated Air Force regulations did not cover the blended unit, leading to issues of how promotions, disciplinary actions and other administrative issues were handled, according to the Air Force.[24]

The 116th ACW was returned to the sole jurisdiction of the Georgia Air National Guard on 1 October 2011 and reactivated. The unit's 17 J-STARS aircraft remained under the domain of the Georgia Air National Guard, though the active duty pilots continue to fly with their Guard counterparts.


Legacy 116th Tactical Fighter Group Emblem

Legacy 116th Bomb Wing Emblem

116th Expeditionary Airborne Command and Control Squadron Emblem

116th Operations Group

  • Constituted as 353d Fighter Group on 29 September 1942
Activated on 1 October 1942
Inactivated on 18 October 1945
  • Redesignated 116th Fighter Group and allotted to Georgia National Guard on 24 May 1946
Organized on 8 July 1946
Extended federal recognition on 9 September 1946
Federalized and placed on active duty on 10 October 1950
Redesignated as 116th Fighter-Bomber Group on 25 October 1950
Released from active duty, redesignated 116th Fighter-Interceptor Group and returned to Georgia state control on 10 July 1952
Redesignated 116th Fighter-Bomber Group on 1 December 1952
Redesignated 116th Fighter-Interceptor Group on 1 July 1955
Redesignated 116th Fighter Group (Air Defense) on 15 April 1956
Redesignated 116th Air Transport Group on 1 April 1961
Redesignated 116th Military Airlift Group on 1 January 1966
Redesignated 116th Tactical Fighter Group on 4 April 1973
Inactivated on 10 December 1974
Redesignated 116th Operations Group
Activated ca. 1 January 1993

116th Air Control Wing

  • Constituted as 116th Fighter-Bomber Wing October 1950
Activated on 1 November 1950
Released from active duty, redesignated: 116th Fighter-Interceptor Wing and allotted to Georgia ANG on 10 July 1952
Redesignated 116th Fighter-Bomber Wing on 1 December 1952
Redesignated 116th Fighter-Interceptor Wing on 1 July 1955
Redesignated 116th Air Defense Wing on 15 April 1956
Redesignated 116th Air Transport Wing on 1 April 1961
Redesignated 116th Military Airlift Wing on 1 January 1966
Redesignated 116th Tactical Fighter Wing on 4 April 1973
Redesignated 116th Fighter Wing on 15 March 1992
Redesignated 116th Bomb Wing on 1 April 1996
Redesignated 116th Air Control Wing 1 October 2002
Inactivated on 1 October 2011
  • Activated on 1 October 2011


Attached to: Philadelphia Fighter Wing, C. 26 October 1942—c. 27 May 1943
Attached to: 3d Bombardment (later Air) Division, 15 September 1943 – 10 October 1945
Under operational control of Fifth Air Force, Far East Air Force, 1 August 1951 – 10 July 1952
Gained by: Tactical Air Command
Gained by: Air Defense Command, 1 July 1955
Gained by: Military Air Transport Service, 1 April 1961
Gained by: Military Airlift Command, 8 January 1966
Gained by: Tactical Air Command, 4 April 1973
Gained by: Air Combat Command, 1 June 1992 – 1 October 2002; 1 October 2002-1 October 2011;1 October 2011 – present


World War II

Georgia Air National Guard

  • 116th Operations Group, 15 March 1992 – present
128th Tactical Fighter (later Bomb, later 128th Airborne Command and Control) Squadron, 15 March 1992 – present


  • George AFB, California, 1 November 1950 – 10 July 1952
Operated from Misawa AB, Japan, 1 August 1951 – 10 July 1952
Further operated from Taegu AB (K-2), South Korea, 2 December 1950 – 4 January 1952; 26 May 1952 – 10 July 1952
  • Dobbins AFB, (Later Dobbins ARB), Georgia, 10 July 1952
  • Robins AFB, Georgia, 1 April 1996 – 1 October 2002;1 October 2002 – present




  1. 1.0 1.1 Rust, Kenn C.; Hess, William N. (1960). The Slybird Group: The 353rd Fighter Group on Escort and Ground Attack Operations. Drawings by Matt, Paul R. and Preston, John. Fallbrook, CA: Aero Publishers, Inc.. p. 9. ISBN 978-0-81689-762-9. LCCN 67-27872. 
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 2.6 Maurer, Maurer, ed (1983) [1961]. Air Force Combat Units of World War II (reprint ed.). Washington, DC: Office of Air Force History. pp. 233–234. ISBN 0-912799-02-1. LCCN 61060979. 
  3. Maurer, Maurer, ed (1982) [1969]. Combat Squadrons of the Air Force, World War II (reprint ed.). Washington, DC: Office of Air Force History. p. 435. ISBN 0-405-12194-6. LCCN 70605402. OCLC 72556. 
  4. Maurer, Combat Squadrons, p. 436
  5. Maurer, Combat Squadrons, p. 437
  6. 6.0 6.1 Rust & Hess, pp. 12-13
  7. Rust & Hess, p. 11
  8. This name honored General Kepner
  9. Rust & Hess, pp. 28-31
  10. Rust & Hess, pp. 41-42
  11. Rust & Hess, p. 42
  12. Rust & Hess, p. 43
  13. Rust & Hess, pp. 50-51
  14. Rust & Hess, p. 53
  15. Newton, Wesley P., Jr. and Senning, Calvin F., (1963) USAF Credits for the Destruction of Enemy Aircraft, World War II, USAF Historical Study No. 85, p. 616
  16. Newton & Senning, pp. 613-614
  17. Newton & Senning, pp. 614-615 (source says 25.99 due to one victory shared by three pilots credited as .33 to each)
  18. Newton & Senning, pp. 615-616
  19. Rust & Hess, P. 83
  20. 20.00 20.01 20.02 20.03 20.04 20.05 20.06 20.07 20.08 20.09 20.10 20.11 During World War II, Eighth Air Force also credited pilots with aircraft destroyed on the ground. Col Duncan, Lt Col Gallup, Maj Elder, Capt Compton, Capt Hartley, Capt Maguire, Capt Poindexter, Capt Tanner, Capt Tordoff, and Lt Auchincloss were credited with additional aircraft destroyed on the ground. Twenty-five other group pilots would be considered aces if their credits for aircraft destroyed on the ground were included.
  21. Scored four additional victories while serving with another group
  22. Scored two additional victories while assigned to Fifteenth Air Force
  23. Watkins, Robert (2008). Battle Colors: Insignia and Markings of the Eighth Air Force In World War II. Vol II (VIII) Fighter Command. Atglen, PA: Shiffer Publishing Ltd.. ISBN 0-7643-2535-3. 
  24. 24.0 24.1 116th Air Control Wing officially splits
  27. 27.0 27.1 27.2 Station numbers in the UK are from Anderson, Capt. Barry (1985). Army Air Forces Stations: A Guide to the Stations Where U.S. Army Air Forces Personnel Served in the United Kingdom During World War II. Maxwell AFB, AL: Research Division, USAF Historical Research Center. Retrieved July 7, 2012. 


 This article incorporates public domain material from the Air Force Historical Research Agency website

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