Information

7th Bombardment Group


7th Bombardment Group

History - Books - Aircraft - Time Line - Commanders - Main Bases - Component Units - Assigned To

History

The 7th Bombardment Group was one of the older formations in the USAAC in 1941, having been active since 1928. Late in 1941 it was decided to reinforce the Far East Air Force on the Philippines. The 7th was chosen to fly its B-17s out to the Philippines, while its ground echelons traveled by sea. The ground echelon left San Francisco for the Philippines on 21 November 1941, and the first contingent of aircraft took off on the evening of 6th December, heading for Hawaii.

The next morning the first contingent of bombers touched down in the middle of the Pearl Harbor attack. The group would be scattered for most of the next year. One part of the group was used to fly fifteen LB-30s from the United States, ending up at Karachi (under the codename Project X).

Another part of the unit ended up at Malang, Java, under the command of Major Stanley K. Robinson. It then moved west to Jogjakarta, flying operations against the invading Japanese. On 29 January Major Robinson was killed in action. The defence of Java ended in failure and evacuation to Australia. Those elements of the 7th that ended up in Australia were transferred to the 19th Bombardment Group, while the 7th began to reform in India. During this period the group's ground echelon found itself in heavy demand - between 23 December 1941 and 4 February 1942 they assembled 138 P-40s.

The Tenth Air Force came under the command of Major General Lewis H Brereton. He wanted medium bombers, preferring them to heavy bombers for operations over Burma. The group was redesignated as a Bombardment Group (Composite). The 11th and 22nd Bombardment Squadrons were to operate the B-25 Mitchell, while the 9th and 436th squadrons retained the B-17. Brereton had hardly gained approval for this reorganisation before the deteriorating situation in the Middle East forced the USAAF to move him west to Egypt. He was given permission to take every heavy bomber and just about anything else he wants.

He was replaced in command of the Tenth by Brigadier-General Earl L. Naiden. He found the 7th BG scattered - the 9th squadron was in the Middle East with Brereton, the 11th was in China with its Mitchells and the 436th and 22nd were scattered around India, out of action. He reorganised the unit once again, this time turning it back to a Bombardment Group (Heavy). The 11th and 22nd squadrons transferred to the 341st Bombardment Group (Medium), while two new squadrons, the 492nd and 493rd, were activated in India. The group began to convert to the B-24 Liberator.

From then on the group had a more stable existence, operating from bases in eastern India against the Japanese in Burma. It also hit targets further away, including oil refinaries in Thailand, power stations in China and enemy shipping. The unit was also used to ferry fuel across the hump to China.

Books

Aircraft

Boeing B-17 Flying Fortress: 1942
Boeing B-17 Flying Fortress and Consolidated LB-30 Liberator: March 1942
B-25 Mitchell: July 1942 (two squadrons)
Consolidated B-24 Liberator: Late 1942-end of war

Timeline

1919-1921First active
1923redesignated 7th Bombardment Group
1 June 1928Activated
1939redesignated 7th Bombardment Group (Heavy)
December 1941Transferred to Philippines
7 December 1941Six of the group's B-17s present on Hawaii during Pearl Harbor attack
January-March 1942Active from Java
March 1942-December 1945Tenth Air Force, operating from India

Commanders (with date of appointment)

Major Stanley K. Robinson: to 29 January 1942 (Killed in action)
Major Austin A Staubel: 29 January-3 February 1942
Colonel Cecil E. Combs: 22 March 1942
Colonel Conrad F. Necrason: 1 July 1942
Colonel Aubrey K. Dodson: 27 March 1944
Colonel Harvey T. Alness: 6 November 1944
Colonel Howard F. Bronson Jr: 24 June 1945

Main Bases

Rockwell Field, California: 1 June 1928
March Field, California: 30 October 1931
Hamilton Field, California: 5 December 1934
Merced Field, California: 5 November 1935
Hamilton Field, California: 22 May 1937
Ft. Douglas, Utah: 7 September 1940-13 November 1941
Brisbane, Australia: 22 December 1942-February 1941 (Aircraft active in Java)
Jogjakarta: January 1942 (Air echelon)
Karachi, India: 12 March 1942
Dum-Dum, India: 30 May 1942
Karachi, India: 9 September 1942
Pandaveswar, India: 12 December 1942
Kurmitola, India: 17 January 1944
Pandaveswar, India: 6 October 1944
Tezpur, India: 7 June 1945

Component Units

9th Bombardment Squadron: 1928-1946
11th Bombardment Squadron: to Autumn 1942
22nd Bombardment Squadron: 1939-Autumn 1942
436th Bombardment Squadron: 1939-1946
492nd Bombardment Squadron: Autumn 1942-1946
493td Bombardment Squadron: Autumn 1942-1946

Assigned To

V Bomber Command, Fifth Air Force: 1942
Tenth Air Force: March 1942-December 1945


7th Bombardment Group

Location. 39° 0.979′ N, 104° 51.31′ W. Marker is in United States Air Force Academy, Colorado, in El Paso County. Marker is in the United States Air Force Academy Cemetery, on Parade Loop west of Stadium Boulevard, on the right when traveling west. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: USAF Academy CO 80840, United States of America. Touch for directions.

Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. 379 th Bomb Group (H) (here, next to this marker) World War II Glider Pilots (here, next to this marker) 306 th Bombardment Group (H) (here, next to this marker) 95 th Bomb Group H (here, next to this marker) 492nd Bomb Group (H) & 801st Bomb Group (P) (here, next to this marker) 416th Bombardment Group (L)

(here, next to this marker) 20th Fighter Group (here, next to this marker) 344 th Bomb Group (M) AAF (here, next to this marker). Touch for a list and map of all markers in United States Air Force Academy.

More about this marker. Must have a valid ID to enter the USAF Academy grounds.

Also see . . .
1. 7th Bombardment Group. (Submitted on February 26, 2021, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania.)
2. 7th Bombardment Group. (Submitted on February 26, 2021, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania.)
3. 7th Bombardment Group - CBI Order of Battle. (Submitted on February 26, 2021, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania.)
4. 7th Bombardment Group (H). (Submitted on February 26, 2021, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania.)
5. Personnel of the 7th Bombardment Group (H). (Submitted on February 26, 2021, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania.)


7th Bombardment Group - History

7th Bombardment Group (H) Historical Foundation

Comments:
My father served with 492nd. Bomber Squadron as a radio operator with the 424 signal comp. aviation, his Name is Charles F. Bien Ser# 36 639 585.
Served in India and Burma from 1943 ton 1945.
Hope you can provide more info. on both units history and more places for me to search.
ThankYou
Jame C. Bien MSMC

Sorry, this is a private entry which is only viewable by the owner.

Comments:
Several names from my Dad's (Wilfred Walsh Graham's) crew in the 492nd, flying in the "Jungle Jig" are missing. Both Lee Ashby and William Tutor are on the roster, along with Dad, but missing are William Windt, Vawter (first name not coming to me at the moment) and Murray Taylor. These are all enlisted. I have no names for the officers, although many pages of Dad's flight records list the pilot as Lt. Smith

Comments:
My father, Harry Donald Bolton, was a 2nd Lt. served as a bombadier in the 7th Bombardment Group of the 10th Air Force. He was stationed in India (CBI theater) and flew missions over the hump. He was killed in a plane crash in Yolo County, CA in 1951. I was too young to remember him and am looking for any information I can find.

Comments:
Following my own monitoring, millions of people in the world get the personal loans at well known banks. Thence, there is a good chance to get a auto loan in any country.


7th Bombardment Group - History

7th Bombardment Group (H) Historical Foundation

Dan "Tiger" Muszynski Email
07/18/10

Lt. Col. Gale I. McGrew ,aged 95, passed away on July 8th 2010. He was the Navigator for Ray Leary. (493rd) Only Dan Muszynski, the Bombardier, is the remaining member of the combat crew.

Rest in Peace Gale McGrew. You have served well, now we will carry the torch. Your memory will continue to inspire greatness.

Comments:
LOOKING FOR A HAROLD BEDE. SERVED WITH MY UNCLE
RAY ZAPALAC IN THE 7TH BOMBARDMENT GROUP.
IF ANY REMEMBER RAY ZAPALAC PLEASE RESPOND.

THANKS

Comments:
On 20 May 2010, Harry Malone passed away at his home with his family. He served in WWII with the 7th Bombardment Group, 10th Air Force in CBI. I was fortunate enough to hear many stories from my grandfather about the pilots and men he served with.

His obituary can be viewed here: http://www.legacy.com/obituaries/idahostatesman/obituary.aspx?n=harry-malone&pid=142973319#ixzz0mETseuN3

My Father was Clarence Pawkett (Jim) he was on the Vandykes crew 1941 - 1945 Does anyone have any information on him. I think the nose art on the plane was "Baby Me"

Comments:
First I want to thank everyone who has responded to my requests for information about Capt Fred Kaufmann.

My book about his career is almost finished and I am simply revisiting some areas to see if there is any additional information or research that I can uncover.

Capt Kaufmann flew with the 436th from May 1944 to May 1945. I am looking for any first-hand diaries, or survivors from the 7th Bomb Group at that time that can relate any stories about the missions or about life at the bases.

I just read & signed an online petition "China-Burma-India Theater Recognition" at www.petitiononline.com/CBI1945 It proposes a future filmed TV series about CBI--the often overlooked and forgotten theater of WWII. Of course, the 7th BG played a vital role in this region. Both the European & Pacific Theaters have been featured in two excellent HBO series. I believe such a series on CBI would go a long way toward filling a big gap in the public's knowledge about this important theater in WWII history. The petitioner is widely known in WWII Army Air Forces circles on the internet. Please visit the petition site, read the petition, and if you agree with the premise, consider signing and adding your name to the list.

Comments:
My grandfather, Samuel Lee (Sam) Matlock, served with the 7th from 1924 to 1942. He was in the ground eschelon on his way to the Philippines when they saw the Japanese fly overhead to attack Pearl Harbor. He also bombed bridges in Java to provide enough time for his men to make it to the harbor, where they comandeered three private Dutch ships, two of which escaped to Australia.

He started the war as a Master Sergeant and received a field commission to 1st Lieutenant.

Any information about him would be greatly appreciated.

Charles Tufankjian Email
04/12/10

Comments:
My name is Charles Tufankjian Jr. My father was a gunner on a B-24 in the 493rd bomb group in 1944-45, and I have been unable to identify him in any crew photos available online. It would be greatly appreciated if anyone had any information regarding his plane, or fellow crew members. I regret not having asked him while he was still alive.

R. M. Blakely, III (Mitch) Email
04/11/10

My father was Rupert Mitchum Blakely, Jr., F/O, Navigator, 9th Bomb Squadron, 7th Bomb Group, Pandaveswar, India 1944-45. He was from Little Rock, Arkansas. He passed away in November 2005. I believe his Pilot's name was Wallace Wills. Would like to see my dad added to the roster.


7th Bombardment Group - History


PERSONNEL OF THE 7TH BOMBARDMENT GROUP (H), CBI

The 7th Bomb Group origins trace back to its activation, in September 1918, as the 1st Army Observation Group during World War I. Their mission was short-lived, and by April, 1919 the group returned to the United States.

In October 1919, the Group was re-activated as the 1st Army Observation Group at Park Field, Tennessee. It was then moved to Langley Field, Virginia.

In March 1921 the group was redesignated the 7th Group (Observation), and on 30 August it was inactivated. The US Army Air Service redesignated the 7th as a Bombardment Group in 1923, but the unit was not activated until June 1928.

In April 1931, the 9th Bomb Squadron was activated and assigned to the 7th Bombardment Group at March Field, California. In January 1941, the 9th moved along with the 7th Bombardment Group to Salt Lake City, Utah. When the 7th Bomb Group left the United States in December 1941, it was made up of five squadrons: Headquarters Squadron, 9th, 11th, 22nd Bomb Squadrons, and the 88th Reconnaissance Squadron. With the ground echelon setting sail on 13 November 1941, the Group made ready to fly into Hickam, Field, Hawaii the following month on 7 December 1941. Their B-17s arrived at Hawaii in the midst of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. Unarmed and unable to fight back, they lost several aircraft to enemy and friendly fire. Following the attack, the remaining aircraft returned to the States before moving on to Java. Accordingly, the ground echelon, en route via troop ship, headed to Australia, and then later to Java. The remainder of the group was then sent Java, and group headquarters was located in Australia.

The 7th moved to India in 8 Mar 1942 and was assigned to the Tenth Air Force in Karachi, India. In April 1942, the 11th and 22nd Squadrons were split off and became the basis of a B-25 Group. The 88th was re-designated the 436th Bomb Squadron. Two other squadrons were formed - 492nd & 493rd. While in Karachi, the 9th Bomb Squadron ferried troops to and evacuated casualties from the intense fighting in Burma. On 2 July 1942, the unit moved to Lydda, Palestine, where their B-17's pounded German shipping and harbors. That effective bombing helped to disrupt the offensive the German Army was attempting against the invading American forces. Their time in the Middle East was short-lived, and in October 1942, the 9th returned to Karachi, India to assist with the bombing of new Japanese targets in China, Siam, Andaman Islands and Burma. The Group's four squadrons - 9th, 436th, 492nd & 493rd - remained in the CBI for the duration of the war. After the war, the 7th returned to the US in December 1945 and was inactivated on 6 January 1946.

Names and information on this list of 7th Bomb Group personnel have been added based on the information gleaned from personal accounts of surviving 7th BG veterans, the rosters of the 7th Bomb Group Historical Foundation, Robert Dorr's 7th Bombardment Group/Wing, 1918-1995 & other books, memoirs of 7th BG veterans, CBI Roundup, Ex-CBI Roundup, Missing Air Crew Reports, newsletters, on-line memorials, obituaries, photo captions, NARA, usaafdata.com, copies of documents (General Orders, Letter Orders, Special Orders, Commendations, Citations, etc.) generously shared by families of 7th BG personnel, and various internet points of reference. While every precaution has been taken to ensure accuracy, please take into consideration misspellings and transposition errors that often occurred in official record-keeping of the day. I welcome suggestions aimed at correcting or adding to this roster.

Please EMAIL ME at [email protected]

Many Thanks To All Who Shared Their Photos & Information To Help Keep Alive The Heroic Sacrifices Of These Fine Men of "The Forgotten Theater" - China-Burma-India

"We can never forget the role of our heroic dead. The 7th lost men in Java, China, Burma, Thailand, and India and throughout their long struggle against the enemy. They died for a better world and to us their deaths shall not be in vain. They know we must pay a price for victory. We MUST make that victory secure in the form of a decent and peaceful world." - Sgt. Jerry J. Ribnick, 493rd Bomb Sqdn.

Squadrons of the Seventh Bombardment Group (H)

Please click on the (L-R: 9th, 436th, 492nd & 493rd) Squadron badges above


7th Bombardment Group - History

Organized as the 1st Army Observation Group on Oct. 1, 1919, the beginning of the 7th Bomb Wing included three highly decorated and honored squadrons from the first World War. The 9th, 11th, and 31st squadrons lent their lineage to the group's emblem as indicated by the three crosses on the shield. In March 1921, the group was redesignated the 7th Group (Observation) and assigned to Langley Field, Va., until inactivated on Aug. 30, 1921.The U.S. Army Air Service redesignated the 7th Group as the 7th Bombardment Group in 1923, however the 7th was not activated until June 1, 1928 at Rockwell Field, Calif. While the group was assigned at Rockwell Field, the fledgling Air Force was testing new theories and ideas.

In early 1931, the 7th began training aircrews in radio-controlled interception.A bomber, acting as a target, reported by radio to a ground station, giving location, altitude and course. Armed with this information, ground controllers guided pursuit aircraft to the objective.The 7th trained and participated in aerial reviews, dropped food and medical supplies to persons marooned or lost, and took part in massive Army maneuvers during the 1930s.The group flew Martin B-12s, Douglas B-18s, and the new Boeing B-17 Flying Fortress during this period. It was the B-17 that carried the men of the 7th to war Dec. 7, 1941.The group was on its way to the Philippines when the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor.The ground echelon, on board ship, was diverted to Australia and later sent to Java. Six of the group's B-17s, which left the continental United States Dec. 6, reached Hawaii during the enemy attack and were able to land safely. Later in December, the remainder of the air echelon flew B-17s from the United States to Java. From Jan. 14 to March 1, 1942, during the Japanese drive through the Philippines and Netherlands East Indies, the group operated from Java, earning a Distinguished Unit Citation for its action against enemy aircraft, ground installations, warships and transports. By the end of March 1942, the 7th moved to India and was assigned to the 10th Air Force. The group resumed combat operations from Karachi, India, flying B-17s and Consolidated LB-30 bombers. By the end of 1942, the group had converted to the Consolidated B-24 Liberator. Combat operations were directed primarily against the Japanese in Burma, with attacks on airfields, fuel and supply dumps, locomotive works, railways, bridges, docks, warehouses, shipping and other targets. The 7th also bombed oil refineries and railways in Thailand, hit power plants in China, attacked enemy shipping in the Andaman Sea and ferried gasoline over the Hump into China. The 7th received its second Distinguished Unit Citation for damaging the enemy's line of supply in Southeast Asia with an attack against rail lines and bridges in Thailand March 19, 1945. After the war, the group returned to the United States in December 1945 and was inactivated Jan. 6, 1946. On Oct. 1, 1946, the 7th was reactivated as a bombardment group (very heavy) and assigned to Strategic Air Command. The group flew the Boeing B-29 Superfortress from Fort Worth Army Airfield, Texas. On Nov. 3, 1947, the 7th Bombardment Wing (Very Heavy) was established and then activated Nov. 17, 1947. After a period of discontinuance and redesignation, the 7th Bombardment Wing (Heavy) was activated at Carswell AFB Aug. 1, 1948. During 1948, the wing began receiving the Consolidated B-36 Peacemaker intercontinental bombers. Trained in global bombardment operations, the wing controlled two B-36 groups, and three B-36 squadrons. The wing also flight tested the giant Consolidated XC-99 transport, a derivative of the B-36 using the wings, tail structure and other components of its bomber relative. The wing also evaluated the RB-36 during 1950.

The 7th began converting to the Boeing B-52 Stratofortress in 1957, along with the Boeing KC-135A Stratotanker. With these new aircraft, the wing trained in global strategic bombardment and air refueling operations. Beginning on April 13, 1965, the 7th deployed its forces to the Pacific area in support of combat operations in Southeast Asia. All wing bombers and tankers, along with aircrews and some support personnel, deployed by the end of May. A B-52 squadron from a different wing was temporarily assigned to Carswell to maintain a bomber capability. However, by August 1965, the remaining aircraft and personnel were deployed to Southeast Asia, leaving only a support cadre to operate Carswell AFB. The wing's headquarters was non-operational until the bombers, aircrews and support personnel began returning in December. The 7th continued to support combat operations in Southeast Asia during the remainder of the conflict and into 1975, but on areduced scale, except for the period Sept. 1, 1969 to March 28, 1970 when most wing resources were required overseas and only a small cadre remained at home. In 1972, the wing conducted B-52D consolidated training for the Strategic Air Command as well as replacement training, combat crew training and flight training to novice crews. Beginning in June 1974, the wing also conducted B-52 and KC-135 Central Flight Instructor Courses.During the Vietnam conflict, the wing was awarded two Air Force Outstanding Unit Awards, an Air Force Outstanding Unit Award with Valor, and the Republic of Vietnam Gallantry Cross with Palm.

On Oct. 1, 1982, the wing's new mission included strategic deterrence and support of combat theater commanders with conventional bombing capability and theater airlift support. On Oct. 1, 1993, the 7th Wing moved to Dyess AFB, Texas, flying both the B-1B Lancer and the C-130 Hercules. This unique structure of bombing and airlift under one wing remained intact until April 1, 1997, when the Air Force transferred all C-130s to Air Mobility Command. That same day, the 317th Airlift Group stood up at Dyess, encompassing all Dyess C-130 assets and the 7th Wing became the 7th Bomb Wing. Dyess has the only B-1B schoolhouse in the Air Force, in addition to operational missions.
Although two commands are now found at Dyess, each brings a unique and special contribution to the Air Force's mission of Global Engagement.


7th Bombardment Group

Topics. This memorial is listed in these topic lists: Air & Space &bull War, World II.

Location. 39° 46.769′ N, 84° 6.781′ W. Marker is in Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio, in Montgomery County. Marker (Memorial #134) is in the Memorial Park of the National Museum of the United States Air Force, with museum access off Springfield Street. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 1100 Spaatz Street, Dayton OH 45433, United States of America. Touch for directions.

Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. 90th Bomb Group (H) B-24 (here, next to this marker) 13th Bombardment Squadron (Light-Night Intruder) (a few steps from this marker) 381st Bomb Group (H) B-17 and 432nd Air Service Group (a few steps from this marker) Staff Sgt Joseph J. Terbay (a few steps from this marker) 13th Bomb Sqdn., 3rd Bomb Gp. (a few steps from

this marker) 376th Heavy Bombardment Group (a few steps from this marker) 341st Fighter Squadron (a few steps from this marker) 345th Bombardment Group (a few steps from this marker). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Wright-Patterson Air Force Base.

Also see . . .
1. 7th Bombardment Group Historical Foundation. (Submitted on July 11, 2010, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania.)
2. 7th Bombardment Group/Wing 1918-1995 Book Preview. (Submitted on July 11, 2010, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania.)
3. 7th Bombardment Group in the CBI. (Submitted on July 11, 2010, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania.)


7th BG Historical Foundation’s Goal

This organization was formed with a meaningful purpose. During World War II, the members of the 7th Bombardment Group devoted their life to serve the cause for their nation. Joining the military is a very heavy yet great decision. Only those who are brave enough to face death at any time can join. From this bombardment group, there were too many different tasks given to each person according to their ability or skills. Some are pilots, Squadron Commanders, Group Commanders, medics, flight engineers, and Chaplains.

During the war, many members of the group were scattered. Some were found in Middle East, China, and also in India. But though they were scattered, they had a more stable existence after being converted to the B-24 Liberator. After becoming stable, they began the operation once again. As the 7th Bombardment Group Historical Foundation was formed, the former radio operators, supply sergeants, armament men, welders, cooks, mechanics, First Sergeants, bomb sight specialists, and so on who survived during the war also joined the organization.

As there was a certain fellowship that occurred among the members during the war and in India, it has survived and became more stronger with age through the years. Though at first, there were small group meetings, the number continually increases as the former members of the group search out for their buddies who were scattered in many different areas around the world. The goal of this foundation is to search continually for the former members of the 7th Bombardment Group through old rosters and names from military records centers.


The group's emblem, approved in 1933, features three crosses symbolizing its squadrons' battle honors. The diagonal stripe was taken from the coat of arms of Province of Lorraine which France took back from Germany in World War I.

World War I [ edit | edit source ]

Men of the 24th Aero Squadron pose in front of a Salmson 2.A2, Vavincourt Aerodrome, France, November 1918

In the summer of 1918 and the organization of the United States First Army in France, the First Army Observation Group was organized at Gondreville-sur-Moselle Aerodrome on 6 September. The group initially consisted of the 91st and 24th Aero Squadrons, which flew over the front into enemy territory. Aircraft from the group took numerous air photos and compiled maps of enemy troop concentrations, road convoys, railway traffic, artillery and other targets during the Battle of Saint-Mihiel in mid-September. Ώ]

On 22 September, the group changed stations, moving to Vavincourt Aerodrome. At Vavincourt, the 9th Aero Squadron (Night Observation) was assigned to the unit. With the addition of the 9th, both day and night patrols were made over enemy territory, with intelligence being returned to First Army headquarters. The duties of the group consisted of long-distance patrols far into the enemy rear areas, both visual and photographic. Special attention was paid to enemy movements on roads, canals and railways. Railway stations and marshalling yards were noted, along with supply depots, airfields and munition storage areas. Once located, they were kept under routine observation. Also, the locations of enemy heavy artillery batteries were monitored and their movements recorded. Ώ]

The First Army OG flew no less than 521 successful missions, with a total of 1,271 sorties being made. Daily battles with enemy aircraft were engaged, with the group shooting down 50 aircraft in 111 aerial combats. With the Armistice with Germany being reached on 11 November 1918, the group ceased flying into enemy territory, but maintained an alert for several weeks afterward. Ώ]

Between The Wars [ edit | edit source ]

After World War I, the Army Air Service was re-organized on a permanent basis. The 1st Army Observation Group was organized at Park Field, Memphis, Tennessee on 1 October 1919. It was transferred to Langley Field, Virginia and was assigned the 1st, 12th and 88th Aero Squadrons, equipped with surplus de Havilland DH-4s. On 14 March 1921, with the formation of the United States Army Air Service, it was re-designated as the 7th Observation Group. It was inactivated due to funding issues on 30 August 1921. ΐ]

Curtiss B-2 Condor formation flight over Atlantic City, N.J. S/N 28-399 is in the foreground (tail section only). Aircraft were assigned to 11th Bombardment Squadron, 7th Bombardment Group at Rockwell Field, California. This flight of 4 aircraft completed cross-country flight to Atlantic City, NJ.

The group was re-formed at Rockwell Field, San Diego, California and activated on 1 June 1928. The re-formed Group was assigned the 9th, 11th, 22d and 31st Bombardment Squadrons. The 9th, 11th and 31st squadrons lent their World War I lineage to the group’s emblem as indicated by the three Maltese Crosses on the shield. While the group was assigned at Rockwell Field, the fledgling Air Force was testing new theories and ideas. In early 1931, the 7th began training aircrews in radio-controlled interception. A bomber, acting as a target, reported by radio to a ground station, giving location, altitude and course. Armed with this information, ground controllers guided pursuit aircraft to the objective. ΐ]

The 7th was transferred to March Field, Riverside California, on 29 October 1931 with its 11th Squadron joining the 9th and 31st Bombardment Squadrons which had been activated on 1 April 1931, but had not been manned. The Curtiss B-2 Condor was flown by the 11th the 9th flew the Keystone B-4 while the 31st flew 0-35s, B-1s, and B-7s. A sprinkling of other aircraft types from the era was also found among the squadrons. ΐ]

The 7th trained and participated in aerial reviews, assisted in atmospheric experiments, dropped food and medical supplies to people marooned or lost, and took part in massive Army maneuvers during the 1930s flying Curtiss and Keystone biplane bombers, then Martin B-12s, ΐ]

For 102 days in 1934 the Army Air Corps flew domestic air mail routes, assigned to the job by an executive order from the White House. This followed a year long investigation that alleged fraud and collusion among the dozen or so airlines who hauled the mail for a subsidy of fifty four cents per mile own. ΐ]

Following the closure of Rockwell Field in San Diego, the 7th had to make room at March for the 19th Bomb Group. Overcrowding at March and the opening of the new Hamilton Field near San Francisco led the group to be transferred on 22 May 1937 and equipped with B-18 Bolos. Equipped with the new B-17C in 1939, runway issues at Hamilton Field forced a transfer to Fort Douglas/Salt Lake City Municipal Airport, Utah on 1 September 1940 which could better handle the large, heavy bombers. In Utah, the group was re-equ9pped with the B-17E – the first Fortress to introduce a completely new rear fuselage with a manually operated turret housing two 0.50-inch machine guns fitted in the extreme tail. ΐ]

With the crisis in the Pacific in late 1941, ground elements departed from Fort Douglas 13 November 1941 and sailed from the port of San Francisco on 21 November on an army transport en route to the Philippines. Aircraft and crews began departing Muroc Field, CA, on 6 December en route to Hawaii. Elements of the group flew their B-17s into Hickam Field at the height of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. ΐ]

World War II [ edit | edit source ]

A captured B-17E (s/n 41-2471) of the 7th Bomb Group in Japanese service, 1942. The aircraft crash landed on 8 February 1942 at Yogyakarta, Java and was abandoned. It was repaired by the Japanese and used for training to develop fighter tactics against the B-17. The eventual fate of this aircraft is unknown.

The group was in the process of moving to the Philippines when the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor on 7 December 1941. Six of the Group's B-17 aircraft left Utah on 5 December for deployment to the Far East. Six of them arrived in Hawaii but landed safely at alternate airfields, avoiding destruction by the attacking Japanese aircraft. The rest of them were ordered to defend California against the Japanese threat, since in the hysteria of the moment the Japanese fleet was expected to show up off the Pacific Coast at any time.

The ground echelon, on board a ship in the Pacific Ocean, was diverted to Brisbane, Australia. The air echelon moved its B-17Es via North Africa and India to Java, where from 14 January to 1 March 1942, it operated against the Japanese advancing through the Philippines and Netherlands East Indies. Received the Distinguished Unit Citation (DUC) for its action against enemy aircraft, ground installations, warships and transports.

7th BG B-24s attacking the Moulmein-Ye rail line, Burma, 1945.

The group's B-17Es were distributed to other bomb squadrons in Australia, and the air echelon was reunited with the ground echelon in India in March 1942, being equipped with longer-range B-24 Liberators. From bases in India, the group resumed combat under Tenth Air Force against targets in Burma. It received B-25 Mitchells and LB-30s in early 1942 but by the end of the year had converted entirely to B-24s. From then through September 1945, bombed airfields, fuel and supply dumps, locomotive works, railways, bridges, docks, warehouses, shipping, and troop concentrations in Burma and struck oil refineries in Thailand, power plants in China and enemy shipping in the Andaman Sea. Ceased bombing operations in late May 1945 and was attached to the Air Transport Command to haul gasoline over "The Hump" from India to China. Received second DUC for damaging enemy's line of supply in Southeast Asia with an attack against rail lines and bridges in Thailand on 19 March 1945. Returned to US in December 1945 and inactivated the following month.

Cold War [ edit | edit source ]

Activated on 1 October 1946 as a B-29 bombardment group and trained with B-29s in global bombardment operations, November 1947 – December 1948. Personnel and aircraft of the new group, consisting of the Boeing B-29 Superfortress, were transferred to Fort Worth AAF from the 92nd Bombardment Group at Spokane AAFld, Washington.

Arrival of the first B-36A at Carswell "City of Fort Worth" (AF Serial No. 44-92015), in June 1948 along with a 7th Bomb Wing B-29.

With its B-29s, the 7th prepared its people for any combat eventuality that might arise, flying simulated bombing missions over various cities. On 5 July 1947, a flight of eight B-29s of the 492nd Bomb Squadron deployed from Fort Worth AAF to Yokota AB, Japan. Shortly after this the detachment received orders to redeploy to Fort Worth AAF via Washington, D.C. The aircraft left Yokota AB on 2 August, flew over the Aleutian Islands, then into Anchorage, Alaska. From Anchorage the flight flew over Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, turned south and flew over Minnesota and Wisconsin. The bombers flew a low-level flight between The Pentagon and Washington Monument in the Capitol on 3 August. Completing this aerial demonstration, they headed for Fort Worth, landing 31 hours after launch from Japan and covering 7,086 miles.

On 12 September, the group deployed 30 B-29s to Giebelstadt Army Airfield, near Würzburg, West Germany. This flight was the largest bomber formation flown from Fort Worth AAF overseas to date, landing in Germany on 13 September. During their ten-day stay, the group bombers participated in training operations over Europe, as well as a show-of-force display by the United States in the early part of the Cold War with the Soviet Union. The flight redeployed from Germany on 23 September.

On 17 November 1947, the 7th Bombardment Wing was established to organize and train a force capable of immediate and sustained long range offensive warfare and operations in any part of the world. The 7th Bombardment Group became its operational component. The wing's mission was to prepare for global strategic bombardment in the event of hostilities. Under various designations, the 7th Bomb Wing flew a wide variety of aircraft at the base until its inactivation in 1993.

In June 1948 the first Consolidated B-36A Peacekeeper was delivered. The first B-36 was designated the "City of Fort Worth" (AF Serial No. 44-92015), and was assigned to the 492d Bomb Squadron. With the arrival of the B-36s, the wing was redesignated as the 7th Bombardment Wing, Heavy on 1 August. B-36s continued to arrive throughout 1948, with the last B-29 being transferred on 6 December to the 97th Bomb Group at Biggs AFB. For 10 years, the "Peacemaker" cast a large shadow on the Iron Curtain and served as our nations major deterrent weapons system.

As part of the 7th Bomb Wing, the 11th Bomb Group was activated on 1 December with the 26th, 42nd, and 98th Bomb Squadrons, Heavy, were activated and assigned. The 11th Bomb Group was equipped with B-36As for training purposes. A five ship B-36 formation was flown on 15 January 1949, in an air review over Washington, D.C., commemorating the inauguration of the President of the United States, Harry S. Truman.

In February 1949, a B-50 Superfortress (developed from the famed B-29) and named Lucky Lady II took off from Carswell for the first nonstop flight around the world. She returned to Carswell after mid-air refueling, flying 23,108 miles, and remaining aloft for ninety-four hours and one minute.

In January 1951, the 7th took part in a special training mission to the United Kingdom. The purpose of the mission was to evaluate the B-36D under simulated war plan conditions. Also, further evaluate the equivalent airspeed and compression tactics for heavy bombardment aircraft. The aircraft, staging through Limestone AFB, Maine, would land at RAF Lakenheath, United Kingdom, following a night radar bombing attack on Helgoland, West Germany. From there the bombers would conduct a simulated bomb run on the Heston Bomb Plot, London, finally landing at RAF Lakenheath.

This was the first deployment of wing and SAC B-36 aircraft to England and Europe. For the next four days the flight flew sorties out of England. The aircraft redeployed to the states on 20 January arriving at Carswell on 21 January.

On 16 February 1951 became a paper organization. With all assigned flying squadrons reassigned directly to the 7 Bombardment Wing as part of the Tri-Deputate organization plan adopted by the wing. The group inactivated on 16 June 1952.

Modern era [ edit | edit source ]

A B-1B from the 7th Operations Group releases a Joint Air-to-Surface Standoff Missile over the White Sands Missile Range, N.M.

Α] As part of a major Air Force-wide reorganization due to the implementation of the Objective Wing organization, the Group was redesignated 7 Operations Group and again became the combat element of the 7 Wing. It controlled two B-52 squadrons and one KC-135 air refueling squadron. When flying operations ended at Carswell AFB, TX in December 1992, the group inactivated the following month.

Upon activation of the 7 Wing at Dyess AFB, TX on 1 October 1993, the group again activated as the combat element of the wing. Equipped with B-1B and C-130 aircraft, the group's mission included bombardment and tactical airlift. It lost its airlift responsibilities in April 1997. At that time it also gained a conventional bombing mission. In November 1998, deployed several aircraft to Oman in support of Operation Desert Fox, where the B-1 flew its first combat missions on 17 and 18 December 1998.


January 10, 1943

On January 10, 1943 Lt. Kelley and his crew experienced a crash landing of their B-24 onto the runway at Accra Air Force Base in the Gold Coast of Africa. All crewmen escaped with only one receiving a small cut to his hand.
The “Report of Aircraft Accident” for the incident states the following:

Subject:
B-24D #41-24091 Accident Accra – January 10, 1943
Crew:
2nd Lt. Harold W. Goad, Pilot
2nd Lt. Albert J. English, Co-Pilot
2nd Lt. Walter V. McCoy, Navigator
2nd Lt. John C. Kelley, Bombardier
S/Sgt. Omar A. Austin, Engineer
S/Sgt. Robert W. Witte, Radio Operator
S/Sgt. Frank J. Chiarello, Gunner
S/Sgt. Francis E. Sawyer, Gunner
Sgt. George H. Marshall, Gunner
2nd Lt. Russell E. Wise
S/Sgt. Bernard A. Zucker
S/Sgt. Kenneth L. Diemand

1. At Ascension No. 3 engine lost power on take off but returned to normal operating conditions so we continued to Accra, arriving here January 9th.
2. The engine was ground checked last night and was operating okay. It was checked before take off and seemed normal.
3. Just after take off at Accra today, No. 3 engine cut out, and it was feathered immediately. We tried to gain altitude and the three remaining engines were increased but to no avail. No. 2 engine caught afire, but fire extinguished by use of engines fire extinguisher. After fire was out it operated but was very hot and rough.
4. We circled wide and shallow to left during this procedure returning to Accra Airport. No. 3 engine was unfeathered and tried to start it to get hydraulic pressure for landing gear. The hydraulic pump is on this engine.
5. The landing wheels came down, but nose wheel would not because the T pin was bent. S/Sgt. Austin attempted to drive the pin out with a hammer but it would not come out. By this time we were making a final approach and S/Sgt. Austin was ordered out of nose compartment.
6. Landing was then made with nose wheel retracted. We held the nose up as long as we could. When speed decreased the nose came down and skidded along runway and dug in the dirt off the end of the runway.
7. The nose of the airplane is damaged beyond repair. There appears to be no other damage to aircraft.
8. 2nd Lt. Russell E. Wise received a small cut on hand. No other personnel were injured.

(Signed)
Harold W. Goad
2nd. Lt. Air Corps,
Pilot Commanding.

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