field honor

452d Air Mobility Wing

The United States Air Force's 452d Air Mobility Wing (452d AMW) is an Air Force Reserves air mobility unit located at March ARB, California.


The Group’s mission is to organize, train and equip aircrews to provide air refueling and strategic airlift any time, any place. The Group’s aircraft operate under widely varying situations ranging from small movements in battle to large movements over long distances.


The wing consists of the operations group which includes a C-17 "Globemaster III" flying squadron and a KC-135 R "Stratotanker" flying squadron as well as an aeromedical evacuation squadron; the maintenance group includes two aircraft maintenance squadrons, a maintenance operations squadron and a maintenance squadron; the mission support group includes the civil engineering squadron, communications squadron, mission support squadron, security forces squadron, two aerial port squadrons, logistic readiness squadron and a services squadron; the medical group includes an aerospace medicine squadron, aeromedical staging squadron and a medical squadron. In addition, the commander has a personal staff which consists of the following offices: inspector general, legal, chaplain, financial management, public affairs, recruiting, safety plans, historian and equal opportunity.

The Group also has a medical squadron which augments joint forces with qualified, professional, aeromedical evacuation aircrews who provide medical care for sick and injured patients transported by air in peacetime and wartime.

Units assigned

  • 452d Operations Group
  • 452d Maintenance Group
    • 452d Maintenance Operations Squadron
    • 452d Aircraft Maintenance Squadron
    • 752d Aircraft Maintenance Squadron
    • 452d Maintenance Squadron
  • 452d Medical Group
    • 452d Aeromedical Squadron
    • 752d Medical Squadron
    • 452d Aeromedical Patient Staging Squadron

  • 452d Mission Support Group
    • 452d Mission Support Squadron
      • Civilian Personnel
    • 452d Civil Engineering Squadron
      • Environmental
      • Fire Department
    • 452d Services Squadron
      • March Field Honor Guard
    • 452d Security Forces Squadron
    • 452d Communications Squadron
    • 50th Aerial Port Squadron
    • 56th Aerial Port Squadron
    • 452d Aerial Port Support Flight
    • 452d Logistics Readiness Squadron

Aircraft and missiles operated


The 452nd Air Mobility Wing traces its lineage directly to the 452d Bombardment Wing established in 1944 flying B-17s out of England during World War II. The present day 452d works to maintain a special relationship with the 452d Bomb Group Memorial Association to keep its proud heritage alive.


  • Established as 452 Bombardment Group (Heavy) on 14 May 1943

Activated on 1 Jun 1943
Redesignated 452 Bombardment Group, Heavy on 20 Aug 1943
Inactivated on 28 Aug 1945

  • Redesignated 452 Bombardment Group, Very Heavy on 11 Mar 1947

Activated in the Reserve on 19 Apr 1947
Redesignated 452 Bombardment Group, Light on 27 Jun 1949

  • Established as 452 Bombardment Wing, Light on 10 May 1949

(452 Bombardment Group became subordinate unit to wing)
Activated in the Reserve on 27 Jun 1949.
Ordered to Active Service on 10 Aug 1950
Inactivated on 10 May 1952

  • Redesignated 452 Tactical Reconnaissance Wing on 6 Jun 1952

Activated in the Reserve on 13 Jun 1952
Redesignated: 452 Bombardment Wing, Tactical on 22 May 1955
Redesignated: 452 Troop Carrier Wing, Medium on 1 Jul 1957
Redesignated: 452 Military Airlift Wing on 1 Jul 1966
Redesignated: 452 Tactical Airlift Wing on 1 Apr 1972
Redesignated: 452 Air Refueling Wing on 1 Oct 1976
Redesignated: 452 Air Refueling Wing, Heavy on 8 Mar 1978
Redesignated: 452 Air Refueling Wing on 1 Feb 1992
Redesignated: 452 Air Mobility Wing on 1 May 1994.


II Bomber Command, 1 Jun 1943

VIII Bomber Command, Jan 1944
3 Bombardment Division, Jan 1944
45 Combat Bombardment Wing, Jan 1944
20 Bombardment Wing, 18 Jun 1945

Second Air Force, c. 12-18 Aug 1945
304 Bombardment Wing (later, 304 Air Division), 19 Apr 1947
Fourth Air Force, 27 Jun 1949- 10 May 1952

Fifth Air Force, 15 Nov 1950-10 May 1952
Attached to: 8 Fighter-Bomber Wing, 15-30 Nov 1950
Attached to: 314th Air Division, 1 Dec 1950-25 May 1951

4 Air Reserve District, 13 Jun 1952
Fourth Air Force, 1 Dec 1952
Sixth Air Force Reserve Region, 1 Sep 1960
Western Air Force Reserve Region, 31 Dec 1969
Tenth Air Force, 8 Oct 1976

Fourth Air Force, 1 Oct 1993-.




  • 98: 1 Aug 1992-1 Oct 1993
  • 452 Bombardment

(later, 452 Tactical Reconnaissance; 452 Bombardment; 452 Troop Carrier; 452 Operations)
27 Jun 1949-10 May 1952
13 Jun 1952-14 Apr 1959
1 Aug 1992-.

  • 507: 1-15 Apr 1994
  • 904: 31 Dec 1969-1 Sep 1975.
  • 916: 1 Oct 1986-1 Jul 1987.
  • 931: 1 Jul 1978-1 Jul 1987
  • 939 Tactical

(later, 939 Military) Airlift: 26 Jan 1968-15 Jun 1969 (detached entire period)

  • 940: 26 Jan 1968-1 Oct 1994
  • 942 Troop Carrier

(later, 942 Air Transport; 942 Military Airlift): 17 Jan 1963-1 Jan 1972.

  • 943 Troop Carrier (later, 943 Tactical Airlift): 17 Jan 1963-25 Apr 1969
  • 944 Troop Carrier

(later, 944 Tactical Airlift; 944 Military Airlift)
17 Jan 1963-25 Jul 1969 (detached 25 Mar 1968-25 Jul 1969).

  • 945: 17Jan 1963-1 Jul 1972 (detached 15 Feb-1 Jul 1972)


  • 77: 1 Oct 1985-1 Oct 1986
  • 78: 1 Nov 1981-1 Oct 1987.
  • 79 Air Refueling: 1 Sep 1982-1 Apr 1995
  • 336 Air Refueling: 1 Sep 1975-
  • 703 Bombardment: 28 May 1948-27 Jun 1949.
  • 728 Bombardment

1 Jun 1943-28 Aug 1945
19 Apr 1947-10 May 1952
13 Jun 1952-17 Jan 1963.

  • 729 Bombardment

(later, 729 Tactical Reconnaissance; 729 Bombardment; 729 Troop Carrier; 729 Airlift)
1 Jun 1943-28 Aug 1945
12 Jul 1947-10 May 1952
13 Jun 1952-17 Jan 1963
1 May 1994-.

  • 730 Bombardment

(later, 730 Tactical Reconnaissance; 730 Bombardment; 730 Troop Carrier; 730 Airlift)
1 Jun 1943-28 Aug 1945
1 Aug 1947-10 May 1952
13 Jun 1952-17 Jan 1963
1 May 1994-.

  • 731 Bombardment

1 Jun 1943-28 Aug 1945
12 Jul 1947-25 Jun 1951 (detached Nov 1950-25 Jun 1951).

  • 733 Bombardment: 16 Nov 1957-28 Oct 1962; 28 Nov 1962-17 Jan 1963
  • Reserve Air Refueling Squadron, Provisional, 9500: attached 1 Nov 1980-1 Nov 1981.

Operational History

World War II

This group was a unit of 8th Air Force which flew its missions from the East Anglia Base of Deopham Green in 1944 and 1945. The wing consisted of the 728th, 729th, 730th and 731st Bombardment Squadrons.

The group was inactivated in 1945.

452d Bombardment Wing, Light

During the Korean War, the 452d Bomb Wing was mobilized and ordered to active duty August 10, 1950. Flying B-26s from bases in Japan, the 452d flew its first Korean combat mission October 27th. It was the first Air Force Reserve wing to fly combat missions in Korea. The unit returned to reserve status May 10, 1952, and returned to Long Beach, California.

Operational Units:

  • 452d Bombardment Group (Light)
    • 728th Bombardment Squadron
    • 729th Bombardment Squadron
    • 730th Bombardment Squadron


  • Itazuke AB, Japan, (October - December 1950)
  • Miho AB, Japan, (December 1950 - May 1951)
  • Pusan East AB, South Korea, (May 1951 - May 1952)

Aircraft flown:

452d Tactical Reconnaissance Wing

Over the next several years, the 452d changed missions and converted to different aircraft many times. The unit, still equipped with B-26s was redesignated the 452d Tactical Reconnaissance Wing on June 13, 1952, and .

452d Tactical Bombardment Wing

On May 22, 1955, the unit was redesignated the 452d Tactical Bombardment Wing (452d TBW).

452d Troop Carrier Wing

The 452d converted to C-46 "Commandos" July 1, 1957, and was redesignated the 452d Troop Carrier Wing (Medium). The 452d converted to the C-119 "Flying Boxcar" April 8, 1958, and moved from Long Beach to March AFB, Calif., November 1, 1960. The 452d's 942d Troop Carrier Group converted to C-124 "Globemasters" April 1, 1965, while the 943d and 944th Troop Carrier Groups continued to fly the C-119.

452d Military Airlift Wing

The 452d Troop Carrier Wing was redesignated the 452d Military Airlift Wing July 1, 1966. In 1968, the former 944th became the 445th Airlift Wing and the first unit in the Associate Reserve Program. Under the Associate Program, the mission of the 445th was to provide necessary augmentation to the active duty in the form of aircrew, maintenance and aerial port operations to achieve full use of military airlift aircraft under various conditions of heightened tension, up to and including total mobilization of reserve forces.

452d Tactical Airlift Wing

The 452d MAW moved to Hamilton AFB, Calif., January 1, 1972, converted to C-130B "Hercules" April 1, and was redesignated the 452d Tactical Airlift Wing. Hamilton AFB became an Air Force Reserve base and the 452d its host unit October 1, 1973.

452d Air Refueling Wing

The 452d returned to March AFB January 12, 1976 and converted to KC-135E "Stratotanker" aircraft, and was redesignated the 452d Air Refueling Wing October 1, 1976. The 452d ARW became the single manager of all Air Force Reserve refueling organizations flying the KC-135E. It was responsible for the 336th Air Refueling Squadron at March AFB, 940th Air Refueling Group at Mather AFB, located in Sacramento, Calif., and the 931st Air Refueling Group at Grissom AFB, Ind.

In October 1977, the wing became the first reserve unit to stand alert alongside a then Strategic Air Command (SAC) active duty wing. The action solidified the "Total Force" concept by placing the Air Force Reserve on the front lines of this nation's military deterrence posture.

The 452d entered the Associate program again when it formed the 78th Air Refueling Squadron (Associate) November 1, 1981, at Barksdale AFB, LA. This squadron became the first reserve unit to fly the Air Force's new KC-10A "Extender" tanker/cargo aircraft. Two sister squadrons, the 79th ARS and 77th ARS were formed and activated at March AFB, Calif., and Seymour-Johnson, N.C., September 1, 1981 and October 1, 1985, respectively.

On April 1, 1993, the 445th Military Airlift Wing located at Norton AFB, Calif., became the first Associate Wing to transition to a "unit-equipped" wing by taking ownership of its own aircraft and resources. The wing's two flying squadrons, 729th Airlift Squadron and 730th Airlift Squadron trace their lineage directly to the 729th and 730th Bombardment Squadrons under the 452d Bombardment Wing during World War II.

452d Air Mobility Wing

In 1993, March AFB was selected for realignment. The 445th MAW was transferred from Norton AFB, to March AFB. As part of the Air Force's realignment, March's two reserve units, the 445th MAW and 452nd ARW were deactivated and their personnel and equipment joined under the 452nd Air Mobility Wing on April 1, 1994. On April 1, 1996, March officially became March Air Reserve Base. In 2005, the wing retired its C-141 fleet.

See Also


  • Futrell, Robert Frank (1983) The United States Air Force In Korea, 1950-1953, Maxwell AFB, Alabama Office of Air Force History, ISBN 0912799714
  • 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 * Air Force Historical Research Agency

External links

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