4706th Air Defense Wing

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4706th Air Defense Wing Airdefensecommand-logo.jpg
Active 1952–1956
Country  United States
Branch  United States Air Force
Type Fighter Interceptor and Radar
Role Air Defense
Part of Air Defense Command

The 4706th Air Defense Wing is a discontinued United States Air Force (USAF) organization. Its last assignment was with the 37th Air Division of Air Defense Command (ADC) at O'Hare International Airport (IAP), Illinois where it was discontinued in 1956. It was established in 1952 at O'Hare as the 4706th Defense Wing in a general reorganization of Air Defense Command (ADC), which replaced wings responsible for a base with wings responsible for a geographical area. It assumed control of several Fighter Interceptor squadrons that had been assigned to the 142d Fighter-Interceptor Wing, an Air National Guard wing mobilized for the Korean War and the 56th Fighter-Interceptor Group. In early 1953 it also was assigned six radar squadrons in the Midwest and its dispersed fighter squadrons combined with colocated air base squadrons into air defense groups. The wing was redesignated as an air defense wing in 1954. It was discontinued in 1956 and most of its units transferred to the 58th Air Division.

History[edit]

The 4706th Defense Wing was organized at the beginning of 1952 at O'Hare IAP[1] in a major reorganization of ADC responding to ADC's difficulty under the existing wing base organizational structure in deploying fighter squadrons to best advantage.[2] The wing assumed the operational squadrons and air defense mission of the inactivating 142d Fighter-Interceptor Wing (FIW), an Oregon Air National Guard (ANG) wing, which had been federalized and moved to O'Hare in 1951 in the expansion of the USAF for the Korean War.[3] The wing also received the regular USAF 62d Fighter-Interceptor Squadron (FIS). flying F-86 Sabre aircraft, at O'Hare from the inactivating 56th Fighter-Interceptor Group at Selfridge AFB, Michigan and the 97th FIS at Wright-Patterson AFB, Ohio, which had been attached to the 142nd FIW.[4][5] The wing also assumed command of ANG units stationed elsewhere in this reorganization, the 113th FIS, flying F-51H Mustangs, at Scott AFB, Illinois,[6] and the 166th FIS, at Lockbourne AFB, Ohio, flying F-84 Thunderjet aircraft.[7] Thus, the wing's fighter squadrons defended Illinois, Indiana, southern Wisconsin, western Michigan and western Ohio. Air Base Squadrons were also activated and assigned to the wing to provide support for USAF units stationed at bases where ADC was the host command.

As ADC realigned during the year. the 113th FIS was reassigned directly to Central Air Defense Force.[6] Then in July, the 63d FIS, another F-86 squadron[8] at Oscoda AFB, Michigan transferred into the wing,[9] and in August, the 166th FIS, moved to Youngstown Municipal Airport, Ohio and was reassigned to the 4708th Defense Wing.

In February 1953 another ADC reorganization activated Air Defense Groups at ADC bases with dispersed fighter squadrons. These groups assumed direct command of the fighter squadrons at their stations, in addition to support squadrons to assist in their role as USAF host organizations at the bases. The 501st Air Defense Group (Air Def Gp), activated at O'Hare IAP, the 520th Air Defense Group, at Truax Field and the 534th Air Defense Group at Kinross AFB (later Kincheloe AFB), Michigan.[10] Although the 527th Air Defense Group, activated at Oscoda AFB, it was assigned to another wing.[10] Another result of the February 1953 reorganization was that the wing assumed the aircraft detection, control and warning mission, with six squadrons in four states being assigned to the wing.[11][12][13]

In 1955, ADC implemented Project Arrow, which was designed to bring back on the active list the fighter units that had compiled memorable records in the two world wars.[14] As a result of Project Arrow, the 501st Air Def Gp was replaced by the 56th Fighter Group (Air Defense), the 520th Air Def Gp was replaced by the 327th Fighter Group (Air Defense), and the 534th Air Def Gp was replaced by the 507th Fighter Group (Air Defense).[5][15] Because Project Arrow called for fighter squadrons to be assigned to their traditional group headquarters, the 97th FIS was moved to Delaware and its personnel and equipment reassigned to the 56th Fighter-Interceptor Squadron.[16] In early October, the 319th Fighter-Interceptor Squadron, flying F-94 Starfire aircraft[17] was assigned to the wing in anticipation of its return to the United States as the Korean war was ending.[11][18][19]

The 56th FIS and 319th FIS and three of the radar squadrons transferred from the wing to the 58th Air Division in March 1956[13][18] The wing was discontinued a few months later and its units assigned to other ADC organizations.[1]

Lineage[edit]

  • Designated as the 4706th Defense Wing and organized on 1 February 1952
Redesignated as 4706th Air Defense Wing on 1 September 1954[1]
Discontinued on 8 July 1956

Assignments[edit]

Stations[edit]

  • O'Hare International Airport, Illinois, 1 February 1952 – 8 July 1956

Components[edit]

Groups[edit]

Squadrons[edit]

Support Squadrons

  • 83rd Air Base Squadron, 1 February 1952 – 16 February 1953
  • 84th Air Base Squadron
Oscoda AFB, Michigan, 1 February 1952 – 16 February 1953
  • 91st Air Base Squadron
Kinross AFB, MI, 14 November 1952 – 16 February 1953

Aircraft[edit]

Commanders[edit]

  • Col. Fred T. Crimmins, Jr., 1 February 1952 - c. 8 July 1952[26]
  • Col. Benjamin S. Preston, Jr. 8 July 1952 – 27 July 1953[27]
  • Col. William D. Greenfield, 27 July 1953 – Unknown[27]

References[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ a b c Cornett, Lloyd H; Johnson, Mildred W (1980). A Handbook of Aerospace Defense Organization, 1946-1980. Peterson AFB, CO: Office of History, Aerospace Defense Center. p. 66. 
  2. ^ Grant, C.L., The Development of Continental Air Defense to 1 September 1954, (1961), USAF Historical Study No. 126, p. 33
  3. ^ see Maurer, Maurer, ed. (1983) [1961]. Air Force Combat Units of World War II (reprint ed.). Washington, DC: Office of Air Force History. p. 258. ISBN 0-912799-02-1.  (move of 142d Fighter-Interceptor Group)
  4. ^ Maurer, Maurer, ed. (1982) [1969]. Combat Squadrons of the Air Force, World War II (reprint ed.). Washington, DC: Office of Air Force History. pp. 239, 323. ISBN 0-405-12194-6. 
  5. ^ a b Maurer, Combat Units, p. 119
  6. ^ a b Cornett & Johnson, p. 122
  7. ^ Cornett & Johnson, p. 123
  8. ^ Cornett & Johnson, p. 117
  9. ^ Maurer, Combat Squadrons, p. 242
  10. ^ a b Cornett & Johnson, pp. 81-83
  11. ^ a b c d Cornett & Johnson, p. 158
  12. ^ a b Cornett & Johnson, p. 159
  13. ^ a b c d e Cornett & Johnson, p. 168
  14. ^ Buss, Lydus H.(ed), Sturm, Thomas A., Volan, Denys, and McMullen, Richard F., History of Continental Air Defense Command and Air Defense Command July to December 1955, Directorate of Historical Services, Air Defense Command, Ent AFB, CO, (1956), p. 6
  15. ^ Maurer, Combat Units, pp. 209, 370
  16. ^ Maurer, Combat Squadrons, pp. 227, 323
  17. ^ Cornett & Johnson, p. 125
  18. ^ a b Maurer, Combat Squadrons, p. 391
  19. ^ Endicott, Judy G., ed. (2001). The USAF in Korea, Campaigns, Units and Stations 1950–1953. Maxwell AFB, AL: Air Force Historical Research Agency. p. 65. ISBN 0-16-050901-7. 
  20. ^ AFHRA Factsheet, 56th Operations Group. Retrieved 6 March 2012
  21. ^ AFHRA Factsheet, 507th Air Refueling Wing. Retrieved 6 March 2012
  22. ^ AFHRA Factsheet, 56th Training Squadron. Retrieved 7 March 2012
  23. ^ AFHRA Factsheet, 62nd Fighter Squadron. Retrieved 3 March 2012
  24. ^ AFHRA Factsheet, 63rd Fighter Squadron. Retrieved 3 March 2012
  25. ^ AFHRA Factsheet, 97th Flying Training Squadron. Retrieved 12 March 2012
  26. ^ Abstract, History of 4706th Def Wg, Feb–Jun 1952. Retrieved 19 February 2012
  27. ^ a b Abstract, History of 4706th Def Wg, Jul–Dec 1953. Retrieved 19 February 2012

Bibliography[edit]

 This article incorporates public domain material from websites or documents of the Air Force Historical Research Agency.

Further Reading

Vol II

See also[edit]