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The United States Air Force's 499th Air Refueling Wing was an aerial refueling unit located at Westover AFBmarker, Massachusettsmarker. It was inactivated in 1966.

History

The unit's origins begin with its predecessor unit, the United States Army Air Force 499th Bombardment Group (499th BG) was part of Twentieth Air Force during World War II. The 499th BG engaged in very heavy (B-29 Superfortress) bombardment operations against Japanmarker.

Lineage

Stations



Major Commands



Squadrons assigned



Aircraft flown



Operational history

World War II

The 499th Bombardment Group (Very Heavy) was consitituted at Davis Monthan Fieldmarker Arizonamarker on 19 Nov 1943 and activated on 20 Nov. At Davis-Monthan, the group was organized and was reassigned to Smokey Hill AAFmarker Kansasmarker on 1 December for training on the B-29.

The 499th was assigned to the 73d Bombardment Wing and it deployed to the Pacific Theater, arriving at Saipanmarker on 18 September 1944. It was assigned to the XXI Bomber Command, Twentieth Air Force.

The group began operations with attacks in the Truk Islandsmarker and on Iwo Jimamarker. Took part in the first attack (24 November 1944) on Japanmarker by AAF planes based in the Marianasmarker. Flew numerous missions in daylight, operating from high altitude to bomb strategic targets in Japan.

Received a Distinguished Unit Citation for striking the Mitsubishi aircraft engine plant at Nagoya on 23 Jan 1945. In March 1945 the group began to conduct night attacks, flying at low altitude to drop incendiaries on area targets in Japan. Completed a series of attacks against enemy airfields on Kyūshūmarker to aid the Allied assault on Okinawa in April 1945 and received another DUC for this action.

Also dropped propaganda leaflets on Japan, and after the war dropped food and supplies to Allied prisoners of war.

Strategic Air Command

The group returned to the United States in November, 1945, being assigned to March Fieldmarker, Californiamarker. It was assigned to the Fourth Air Force of Continental Air Forces. Demobilization, however, was in full swing and the group turned in its aircraft and was inactivated on 16 February 1946.

Cold War

The 499th Air Refueling Wing was established on 15 Nov 1962 at Westover AFBmarker, Massachusettsmarker. The wing replaced the 4050th Air Refueling Wing on 1 January 1963, assigned to the Eighth Air Force's 57th Air Division, and continued to support SAC bombardment and TAC fighter aircraft with air-to-air refueling. It was equipped with KC-97s, KC-135s. The 499th also flew the EC-135 'Looking Glass' missions in support of the Post-Attack Command & Control System (PACCS) for Eighth Air Force. From Nov. 1965 until inactivated wing components operated under a bomb wing at Westover AFB, Mass. The 499th Air Refueling Wing was inactivated on 25 Jun 1966.

Supported SAC bombardment and TAC fighter aircraft with air-to-air refueling and occasionally deployed segments of its tanker force overseas to support unit movement and special operations. Also flew EC-135s on a post attack command control system (PACCS) airborne command post mission in support of Eighth Air Force.

See also



References

  • Ravenstein, Charles A. (1984). Air Force Combat Wings: Lineage and Honors Histories. Washington, D.C.: Office of Air Force History. ISBN 0-912799-12-9


External links




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