376th Air Refueling Squadron
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|376th Air Refueling Squadron|
Emblem of the 376th Air Refueling Squadron
|Branch||United States Air Force|
The 376th Air Refueling Squadron is an inactive United States Air Force unit. It was last assigned to the 4238th Strategic Wing, stationed at Barksdale AFB, Louisiana. It was inactivated on 15 August 1960.
World War II
Established in early-1943 as the 376th Fighter Squadron and equipped with P-47 Thunderbolts, the squadron trained under I Fighter Command in the mid-Atlantic states. Also flew air-defense missions as part of the Philadelphia Fighter Wing. Deployed to the European Theater of Operations (ETO), being assigned to VIII Fighter Command in England, November 1943.
The unit served primarily as an escort organization, covering the penetration, attack, and withdrawal of B-17/B-24 bomber formations that the USAAF sent against targets on the Continent. The squadron also engaged in counter-air patrols, fighter sweeps, and strafing and dive-bombing missions. Attacked such targets as airdromes, marshalling yards, missile sites, industrial areas, ordnance depots, oil refineries, trains, and highways. During its operations, the unit participated in the assault against the Luftwaffe and aircraft industry during the Big Week, 20–25 February 1944, and the attack on transportation facilities prior to the Normandy invasion and support of the invasion forces thereafter, including the Saint-Lô breakthrough in July.
The squadron supported the airborne attack on the Netherlands in September 1944 and deployed to Chievres Airdrome, (ALG A-84), Belgium between February and April 1945 flying tactical ground support missions during the airborne assault across the Rhine. The unit returned to Little Walden and flew its last combat mission on 20 April 1945. Demobilized during the summer of 1945 in England, inactivated in the United States as a paper unit in October.
The squadron flew the KC-97F Stratotanker (Also KC-97G) stationed at Barksdale AFB, providing air refueling to USAF units from 1953-1966.
- 361st Fighter Group, 10 Feb 1943 – 10 November 1945
- 376th Bombardment Group: 1 June 1951 – 20 May 1952 (Not manned or equipped)
- 376th Bombardment Wing: 18 August 1953
- 4th Air Division: 1 December 1957 (attached to 301st Bombardment Wing)
- 4238th Strategic Wing: 1 March 1958 (remained attached to 301st Bombardment Wing until 15 April 1958)
- 4081st Strategic Wing: 1 July 1960 – 25 June 1966