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4th Air Division
Division 004th Air
4th Air Division emblem
Country United States
Branch United States Air Force
Service history
Active 19 October 1940 – 1 October 1941
7 June 1942 – 18 June 1945
31 December 1946 – 27 June 1949
1 February 1951 – 16 June 1952
16 June 1952 – 23 August 1988
Decorations see "Lineage and Honors" section below
Commanders
Commanders James Doolittle
Frederick W. Castle
Insignia

The 4th Air Division (4th AD) is an inactive United States Air Force unit. Its last assignment was with Fifteenth Air Force, stationed at Francis E. Warren AFB, Wyoming. It was inactivated on 23 August 1988.

As the 4th Bombardment Wing, the unit was one of the primary B-17 Flying Fortress heavy strategic bombardment wings of VIII Bomber Command and later, Eighth Air Force in World War II.

During the Cold War, the 4th AD was an intermediate command echelon of Strategic Air Command, controlling strategic bombardment and intercontinental strategic missile wings until inactivated in 1988.

HistoryEdit

LineageEdit

  • Established as 4 Bombardment Wing on 19 October 1940
Activated on 18 December 1940
Inactivated on 1 October 1941
  • Activated on 7 June 1942
Redesignated as: 4 Combat Bombardment Wing (Heavy) on 30 August 1943
Redesignated as: 4 Combat Bombardment Wing, Heavy on 24 August 1944
Disestablished on 18 June 1945
  • Reestablished, and redesignated 4 Bombardment Wing, Light on 31 December 1946
Activated in the Reserve on 20 December 1946
Redesignated 4 Air Division, Bombardment on 16 April 1948
Inactivated on 27 June 1949
  • Redesignated 4 Air Division on 1 February 1951
Organized (Table of Distribution) on 10 February 1951
Discontinued on 16 June 1952
  • Activated (Table of Organization) on 16 June 1952
Redesignated as: 4 Strategic Aerospace Division on 1 September 1964
Redesignated as: 4 Strategic Missile Division on 30 June 1971
Redesignated as: 4 Air Division on 1 March 1973
Inactivated on 23 August 1988.

AssignmentsEdit

  • General Headquarters (GHQ) Air Force, 18 December 1940 – 1 October 1941.
Apparently further assigned to Northeast Air District (later, First Air Force) c. 16 January 1941

ComponentsEdit

Wings

  • 2 Bombardment: 1 April 1963 – 1 September 1964
  • 28 Bombardment: 15 January 1973 – 1 May 1982
  • 44 Strategic Missile: 30 June 1971 – 1 May 1982; 23 January 1987 – 15 July 1988
  • 55 Strategic Reconnaissance: 1 October 1976 – 1 April 1980
  • 90 Strategic Missile: 30 June 1971 – 23 August 1988
  • 91 Strategic Reconnaissance (later, 91 Strategic Missile): 10 February – 11 September 1951; 30 June 1971 – 30 November 1972
  • 92 Strategic Aerospace: 31 March 1970 – 30 June 1971
  • 97 Bombardment: 1 July 1959 – 1 July 1963
  • 301 Bombardment (later, 301 Air Refueling): 10 February 1951 – 15 April 1958 (detached 3 December 1951 – c. 4 March 1953; c. 10 February-c. 17 April 1954); 5 January – 23 August 1988
  • 319 Bombardment: 1 September 1964 – 30 June 1971; 15 January 1973 – 22 January 1975; 1 May 1982 – 23 January 1987
  • 321 Strategic Missile: 1 November 1964 – 22 January 1975; 1 May 1982 – 23 January 1987
  • 340 Bombardment: 1 September 1963 – 1 September 1964 (detached c. 1–31 August 1964). 321 Strategic Missile: 1 November 1964 – 22 January 1975; 1 May 1982 – 23 January 1987
  • 341 Strategic Missile: 30 June 1971 – 15 January 1973; 23 January 1987 – 23 August 1988
  • 351 Strategic Missile: 30 June 1971 – 1 July 1973
  • 376 Bombardment: 1 June 1951 – 3 December 1957 (detached 1 June – 10 October 1951)
  • 401 Provisional Combat Wing Bombardment: 6 June – 14 September 1943
  • 410 Bombardment: 1 September 1964 – 31 March 1970
  • 454 Bombardment: 1 February – 1 July 1963
  • 494 Bombardment: 1 July 1963 – 1 July 1964
  • 4130 Strategic: 1 July-l September 1963
  • 4228 Strategic: 1 July 1958 – 1 February 1963
  • 4238 Strategic: 1 March 1958 – 1 April 1963.

Groups

Squadron

StationsEdit

  • Mitchel Field, New York, 18 December 1940
  • Westover Field, Massachusetts, 20 March – 1 October 1941; 7 June 1942
  • Bolling Field, DC, c. 28 July c. 28 August 1942
  • RAF High Wycombe (Camp Lynn) (AAF-101), England, 12 September 1942
  • Marks Hall (AAF-160), England, 18 January 1943
  • Camp Blainey, England, June 1943

Aircraft and missilesEdit

OperationsEdit

The 4th Bombardment Wing moved to England in 1943 and as a part of Eighth Air Force began bombing operations against German occupied Europe. Targets included shipyards, synthetic rubber plants, chemical plants, marshalling yards, and oil facilities. In 1944, some subordinate units attacked coastline defenses and marshalling yards in preparation for the Allied invasion of France. Some units supported ground troops during the Battle of the Bulge (December 1944 – January 1945) and the assault across the Rhine (March 1945 – April 1945).

In the postwar years, the command was part of Air Defense Command assigned as a reserve wing assigned to First Air Force (1946–1949)

Rectivated in 1951 as an intermediate command echelon of Strategic Air Command, the 4th Air Division was part of Second Air Force, controlling B-29, B-50 and B-47 wings. In 1962, units controlled by the 4th Air Division supported 2d Air Force's post attack command and control system, and became responsible for the Advanced Airborne Command Post. It participated in the Cuban missile crisis of 1962 and trained in electronic countermeasures and conducted combat operations in Southeast Asia in the late 1960s.

Reassigned to SAC's Fifteenth Air Force in 1970, the 4th assured that assigned units were capable of conducting strategic aerospace warfare using intercontinental ballistic missiles, long-range bombardment, and air refueling resources, according to the Emergency War Order. In addition, the division assumed airborne command and control responsibilities that consisted of supporting auxiliary airborne command post aircraft.

Inactivated in 1988 as a result of budget reductions and a consolidation of SAC's command and control echelons.

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

PD-icon.svg This article incorporates public domain material from the Air Force Historical Research Agency website http://www.afhra.af.mil/.

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