927th Air Refueling Wing
|927th Air Refueling Wing|
927th Air Refueling Wing KC-135 Stratotankers
|Active||15 January 1963 — present|
|Branch||United States Air Force|
|Part of||Air Force Reserve Command|
|Garrison/HQ||MacDill Air Force Base, Florida|
|Tail Code||Blue tail stripe "MacDill" in white|
|Engagements||Operation Desert Storm
Operation Deny Flight
Operation Enduring Freedom
|Decorations||Air Force Outstanding Unit Award
Republic of Vietnam Gallantry Cross with Palm
|927th Air Refueling Wing emblem (approved 5 June 1995)|
|927th Tactical Airlift Group emblem|
The 927th Air Refueling Wing (927 AW) is a unit of the Air Reserve Component (ARC) of the United States Air Force. It is assigned to the Fourth Air Force (4 AF), Air Force Reserve Command (AFRC), stationed at MacDill Air Force Base, Florida.
The 927 ARW is an associate unit of the 6th Air Mobility Wing (6 AMW), Air Mobility Command (AMC), with both units sharing and flying KC-135R Stratotanker aircraft. If mobilized to active duty, the 927 ARW is operationally-gained by AMC.
The mission of the 927th Air Refueling Wing is to provide a dedicated and prepared Total Force Team to fly, fight and win in air, space and cyberspace. The 927 ARW consists of 3 groups and 11 subordinate units including:
- 63d Air Refueling Squadron
- 45th Aeromedical Evacuation Squadron
- 927th Operations Support Squadron
- 927th Security Forces Squadron
- 927th Logistical Readiness Squadron
- 927th Force Support Squadron
- 927th Aeromedical Staging Squadron
- 927th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron
- 927th Maintenance Squadron
- 927th Aerospace Medicine Squadron
- 927th Maintenance Operations Flight
The 927 ARW directly supports the totally integrated Air Force mission by way of extending the global reach of United States air power through mission ready personnel and equipment while providing global air refueling and airlift operations.
- 927th Operations Group
- 63d Air Refueling Squadron (KC-135 Stratotanker)
- 927th Mission Support Group
- 927th Maintenance Group
Following the mobilizations in 1961 and 1962 for the Berlin Crisis and the Cuban Missile Crisis, Continental Air Command (ConAC) realized that it was unwieldy to mobilize an entire wing unless absolutely necessary. Their original Table of Organization for each Wing was a wing headquarters, a troop carrier group, an Air Base Group, a maintenance and supply group, and a medical group. In 1957, the troop carrier group and maintenance and supply groups were inactivated, with their squadrons reassigned directly to the wing headquarters - despite the fact that many wings had squadrons spread out over several bases due to the Detached Squadron Concept dispersing Air Force Reserve units over centers of population.
To resolve this, in late 1962 and early 1963, ConAC reorganized the structure of its reserve Troop Carrier Wings by establishing fully deployable Troop Carrier Groups and inserting them into the chain of command between the Wing and its squadrons at every base that held a ConAC troop carrier squadron. At each base, the group was composed of a material squadron, a troop carrier squadron, a tactical hospital or dispensary, and a combat support squadron. Each troop carrier wing consisted of 3 or 4 of these groups. By doing so, ConAC could facilitate the mobilization of either aircraft and aircrews alone, aircraft and minimum support personnel (one troop carrier group), or the entire troop carrier wing. This also gave ConAC the flexibility to expand each Wing by attaching additional squadrons, if necessary from other Reserve wings to the deployable groups for deployments.
As a result, the 927th Troop Carrier Group was established in 1963 at what was then Selfridge Air Force Base, Michigan, with a mission to organize, recruit and train Air Force Reserve personnel in the tactical airlift of airborne forces, their equipment and supplies and delivery of these forces and materials by airdrop, landing or cargo extraction systems. The group was equipped with C-119 Flying Boxcars for Tactical Air Command airlift operations.
The group was one of three C-119 groups assigned to the 403d TCW in 1963, the others being the 928th Troop Carrier Group at O'Hare International Airport, Illinois and the 929th Troop Carrier Group at Davis Field, Oklahoma.
The 927 TCG was redesignated the 927th Tactical Airlift Group (927 TAG) in 1967 and flew the C-119 Flying Boxcar aircraft until 1969. The group was then redesignated as the 927th Tactical Air Support Group (927 TASG) on 18 June 1969, and flew U-3 Administrator ("Blue Canoe") aircraft until 1971. The 927 TASG was once again redesignated as the 927th Tactical Airlift Group on 29 June 1971 and converted to the C-130 Hercules aircraft. During 1992, the unit converted to KC-135 Stratotanker aircraft and was redesignated the 927th Air Refueling Group until 1 October 1994, when the unit was redesignated as the 927th Air Refueling Wing (927 ARW).
The 927 ARW's flying and non-flying units have demonstrated professionalism throughout many years of service. For example, during the Vietnam War, the flying squadron ferried aircraft and delivered equipment and supplies to South Vietnam. From a humanitarian perspective, unit personnel offered assistance when the need arose. They supported relief efforts such as the 1973 New York and Pennsylvania floods as well as hurricane disaster relief to Honduras in 1974 and for Hurricane Hugo victims in 1989.
The 927th was realigned into an Air Refueling Group in 1992 and upgraded to an Air Refueling Wing in 1994. From 1995 through 2004, the 927 ARW participated in missions, operations and exercises around the world, including Operation Northern Watch; Somalia Pullout; Atlantic Express; airlift to Soto Cano Air Base, Honduras; AWACS support to Geilenkirchen, Germany;, Red Flag at Nellis AFB, Nevada; Snowbird Support, airlift from Rhein-Main AB, Germany to Eglin AFB Aux Field #3/Duke Field, Florida; airlift to Ramstein AB, Germany; Operation Decisive Endeavor; Operation Pitch Black; Pacific Express to Kadena AB, Japan; Phoenix Tusk to Bangor, Maine; and more recently deployed to Italy and France in support of Operation Deny Flight, Operation Decisive Endeavor, and Deliberate Guard/Forge enforcing the "no fly zone" over the former Yugoslavia.
In 1997, the Air Force Reserve (AFRES) was disestablished as a Field Operating Agency (FOA) and reconstituted as a Major Command (MAJCOM), designated as Air Force Reserve Command (AFRC). All AFRES relationships with the 927 ARW were automatically transferred to AFRC.
The 927 ARW also responded within one hour after the September 11 attacks in 2001, wing quickly providing refueling services for USAF fighter aircraft patrolling the North Central United States and provided other concurrent support of Homeland Defense as part of Operation Noble Eagle. The 927th Security Forces Squadron was initially activated for 12 months and extended for an additional 12 months in support of Operation Noble Eagle. The wing continues to remain actively engaged in Operation Noble Eagle (Homeland Defense) and Operation Enduring Freedom (Global War on Terrorism).
In its 2005 Base Realignment and Closure Commission recommendations, DoD recommended to realign Selfridge Air National Guard Base, Michigan. Under this recommendation, the 927 ARW at Selfridge ANGB would distribute its eight KC-135 aircraft to the 127th Wing (127 WG) of the Michigan Air National Guard, also based at Selfridge. The 927 ARW would then realign to an Active-Reserve "Associate" arrangement with the 6th Air Mobility Wing (6 AMW) at MacDill Air Force Base, Florida in order to capture reserve experience in the southeast United States and enhance the combined units' overall capability.
In another recommendation, DoD recommended realigning Grand Forks Air Force Base, North Dakota, redistributing the 319th Air Refueling Wing’s (319 ARW) KC-135R aircraft to the 6th AMW at MacDill AFB (four aircraft) and several other installations. The enlarged 6 AMW would then host an Air Force Reserve association arrangement with 927 ARW manpower realigned from Selfridge ANGB, with both units operating, maintaining and sharing the same KC-135R aircraft.
In 2007, the 927 ARW commenced relocation to MacDill AFB and formally established itself at MacDill AFB on 1 May 2008.
- Established as the 927th Troop Carrier Group, Medium and activated on 15 January 1963 (not organized)
- Organized in the Reserve on 11 February 1963
- Redesignated 927th Tactical Airlift Group on 1 July 1967
- Redesignated 927th Tactical Air Support Group on 18 June 1969
- Redesignated 927th Tactical Airlift Group on 29 June 1971
- Redesignated 927th Airlift Group on 1 February 1992
- Redesignated 927th Air Refueling Group on 1 June 1992
- Redesignated 927th Air Refueling Wing on 1 October 1994
- Continental Air Command, 15 Jan 1963 (not organized)
- 403d Troop Carrier Wing, 11 Feb 1963
- Central Air Force Reserve Region, 31 Dec 1969
- 403d Composite (later, 403d Tactical Airlift) Wing, 1 Jun 1970
- 459th Tactical Airlift Wing, 15 Mar 1976
- 440th Tactical Airlift (later, 440th Airlift) Wing, 1 Jul 1981
- 434th (later, 434th Air Refueling) Wing, 1 Aug 1992
- Twenty-Second Air Force, 1 Oct 1994
- Fourth Air Force, 1 Apr 1997–Present
- 927th Operations Group: 1 Aug 1992–Present
- 63d Air Refueling Squadron: 11 Feb 1963–Present
- Selfridge AFB (later, Selfridge ANGB), Michigan, 11 Feb 1963- 30 April 2008
- MacDill AFB, Florida, 1 May 2008 – Present
- C-119 Flying Boxcar, 1963-1969
- U-3 Administrator, 1969-1971
- C-130 Hercules, 1971-1992
- KC-135 Stratotanker, 1992–Present
- Haulman, Daniel L. (October 26, 2007). "Factsheet 927 Air Refueling Wing (AFRC)". Air Force Historical Research Agency. Retrieved November 4, 2014.