374th Operations Group

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374th Operations Group
374thoperationsgroup-emblem.jpg
Emblem of the 374th Operations Group
Active 1943–1946; 1946–1958; 1966–present
Country United States
Branch United States Air Force
C-130 Hercules aircraft of the 36th Airlift Squadron wait on the flightline

The 374th Operations Group (374 OG) is the operational flying component of the United States Air Force 374th Airlift Wing. It is stationed at Yokota Air Base, Japan.

The unit's World War II predecessor unit, the 374th Troop Carrier Group operated primarily in the Southwest Pacific Theater, being formed in Australia in 1942 using resources from the Air Carrier Service (formerly Air Transport Command). The group employed a large variety of aircraft to perform air transport of troops, cargo, and evacuation of the wounded, earning two United States Distinguished Unit Citations (DUCs) in Papua New Guinea. In January–February 1943, the group supplied Allied forces during the battle of Wau airstrip, making landings at the airstrip under enemy fire and earning its third DUC. When the Korean War broke out in June 1950, was the only air transport group in the Far East. During the Cold War, the group airlifted wounded French troops from Indo-China to Japan, en route to France. Inactivated in 1958, the group was reactivated in 1966 at Naha AB, Okinawa as part of 315th Air Division and was active in the Vietnam War. ince that time itits assigned squadrons have conducted special operations, aeromedical evacuations, search and rescue operations, humanitarian relief and theater airlift missions in support of US and United Nations security interests throughout the Far East.

The group has never been assigned to the United States.

Overview[edit]

The 374 OG maintains a forward presence by providing rapid responsive movement of personnel, equipment and operational support in the Asia-Pacific region. Ensures the combat readiness of three operational squadrons using C-130H, C-12J and UH-1N aircraft. Conducts three distinct missions; intratheater airlift, aeromedical evacuation and distinguished visitor transport for U.S. Pacific Command and other agencies in support of national security policy.

The unit consists of the following squadrons:

Only forward-based tactical airlift squadron in the Pacific. Maintains a forward presence and supports combat operations by providing responsive movement of personnel and equipment through aerial delivery and assault airland operations. Maintains C-130H mission-ready aircrew to conduct theater airlift, special operations, aeromedical evacuation, search and rescue, repatriation and humanitarian relief missions.
Maintains a forward presence in the Pacific and provides responsive airlift support for distinguished visitors, as well as other priority passengers and cargo, on travel vital to the national security interest of the United States. Maintains both UH-1N and C-12J mission-ready aircrews to conduct aeromedical evacuation, search and rescue and priority airlift missions throughout the Pacific.
  • 374th Operations Support Squadron
Maintains a forward presence in the Western Pacific, supporting U.S. Pacific Command interests. Provides for flight operations, intelligence, combat survival, aviation resource management, aircrew training, life support, weather forecasting and observing, combat tactics, mission scheduling, airfield management and air traffic control. Supports the group staff and two airlift squadrons operating UH-1N, C-12J and C-130H aircraft.

History[edit]

For additional lineage and history, see 374th Airlift Wing

The 374th Troop Carrier Group drew its resources from the Air Carrier Service (formerly Air Transport Command) Allied Air Forces, Southwest Pacific Area when it formed in November 1942. It had four troop carrier squadrons assigned, the 21st and 22d were veterans of the South Pacific Area. During the remainder of 1942 and early 1943, the group employed a large variety of aircraft to perform air transport of troops, cargo, and evacuation of the wounded, earning two Distinguished Unit Citations (DUCs) in Papua. In January–February 1943, the group supplied Allied forces during the battle of Wau airstrip, making landings at the airstrip under enemy fire and earning its third DUC. From mid-Feb to July 1943, the group transported personnel and supplies to three principal areas: Dobodura, where a large base was being constructed; Wau and Bulolo, rear bases for advancing Allied forces; and to patrols skirting Lae and Salamau.

During Jul and August 1943, the group trained elements of the 375th, 403d, and 433d Troop Carrier Groups. When the campaign against Lae opened on 5 September 1943, the 374th led aircraft of those groups in a drop of US airborne troops and Australian artillery paratroops at Nadzab airdrome. The next day, as vegetation around the captured airdrome still burned, the group landed engineer troops and equipment to repair the damaged runways, and artillery to protect the captured airstrip. After the capture of Lae ten days later, the group flew 303 trips moving large stores of ammo, supplies, and equipment for use of advancing ground troops. From October 1943 – May 1944, the 374th maintained an unending flow of troops and equipment, including arms and ammunition, to units scattered throughout Australia and New Guinea areas. It continued to provide these services and in November 1944 commenced cargo and personnel flights to Leyte in the Philippines, which required three days for a round trip. By January 1945, flights in the New Guinea and Australian areas continued, but flights to the Philippines almost ceased until the group moved to Nielson Field near Manila and remained until the end of the war.

The group participated in training maneuvers with army and naval forces in the Pacific Theater until May 1946. From October 1946 – April 1947, it provided troop carrier and air courier services and participated in joint maneuvers in the Pacific.

It moved to Japan in March 1949 and when the Korean War broke out in June 1950, was the only air transport group in the Far East. For its work between 27 June and 15 September 1950, transporting vital cargo, personnel and evacuating wounded men, the 374th earned its fourth DUC. In April 1953, the group transported the first of several groups of repatriated prisoners of war from Korea to Japan.

Beginning in January 1954, the 374th airlifted wounded French troops from Indo-China to Japan, en route to France. Principal operations from 1955 until 1958 consisted of numerous mobility exercises, routine theater airlift, and occasional exercises throughout the Western Pacific region.

Activated as an Operations Group under the objective wing structure in April 1992, the group gained control over the 374th Airlift Wing's operational squadrons. From 1992 to present, the 374th Operation Group's assigned squadrons conducted special operations, aeromedical evacuations, search and rescue operations, humanitarian relief and theater airlift missions in support of US and UN security interests throughout the Far East.

Lineage[edit]

  • Established as 374th Troop Carrier Group on 7 November 1942
Activated on 12 November 1942 in Australia
Inactivated on 15 May 1946
  • Activated on 15 October 1946
Redesignated 374th Troop Carrier Group, Heavy, on 21 May 1948, later redesignated at the 374th Troop Carrier Wing
Inactivated on 18 November 1958
  • Reactivated on August 1, 1966 as the 374th Troop Carrier Wing
  • Redesignated: 374th Tactical Airlift Group on 31 July 1985 (Remained inactive)
  • Redesignated: 374th Operations Group on 1 April 1992
Activated on 1 April 1992.

Assignments[edit]

Components[edit]

Stations[edit]

Aircraft[edit]

References[edit]

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

External links[edit]