527th Bombardment Squadron
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|527th Bombardment Squadron|
Emblem of the 527th Bombardment Squadron
|Branch||United States Air Force|
The 527th Bombardment Squadron is an inactive United States Air Force unit. Its last was assigned to the 379th Bombardment Wing, stationed at Homestead Air Force Base, Florida. It was inactivated on 9 January 1961.
World Ar II
Established in late 1942 as a B-17 Flying Fortress heavy bomb squadron; trained under Second Air Force. Deployed to the European Theater of Operations (ETO) in early 1943, being assigned to VIII Bomber Command in England.
Began long range strategic bombardment operations over enemy-held Europe on 19 May 1943; engaged primarily in bombardment of strategic targets such as industries, oil refineries, storage plants, submarine pens, airfields and communications centers in Germany, France, the Netherlands, Belgium, Norway and Poland. Specific targets included a chemical plant in Ludwigshafen, an aircraft assembly plant in Brunswick, ball-bearing plants at Schweinfurt and Leipzig, synthetic oil refineries at Merseburg and Gelsenkirchen, marshalling yards at Hamm and Reims and airfields in Mesnil au Val and Berlin.
On several occasions the squadron attacked interdiction targets and operated in support of ground forces. It bombed V-weapon sites, airfields, radar stations and other installations before the Normandy invasion in June 1944, bombed defended positions just ahead of the Allied landings on 6 June and struck airfields, rail choke points, and gun emplacements during the campaign that followed.
During the Northern France Campaign, the squadron bombed enemy positions to assist ground troops at St Lo during the breakthrough, 24–25 July 1944, attacked German communications and fortifications during the Battle of the Bulge, December 1944 - January 1945, and bombed bridges and viaducts in France and Germany to aid the Allied assault across the Rhine, February–March 1945, combat ending with the German Capitulation in May 1945.
Was reassigned to Air Transport Command and assigned to Casablanca, French Morocco, the squadron used its B-17 bombers as transports, ferrying military personnel from locations in France to Morocco, then south to Dakar in French West Africa or to the Azores for further transportation by other units. Inactivated in place in Morocco in late July 1945.
Strategic Air Command
From 1958, the Boeing B-47 Stratojet wings of Strategic Air Command (SAC) began to assume an alert posture at their home bases, reducing the amount of time spent on alert at overseas bases. The SAC alert cycle divided itself into four parts: planning, flying, alert and rest to meet General Thomas S. Power’s initial goal of maintaining one third of SAC’s planes on fifteen minute ground alert, fully fueled and ready for combat to reduce vulnerability to a Soviet missile strike. To implement this new system B-47 wings reorganized from three to four squadrons. The 527th was activated at Homestead Air Force Base as the fourth squadron of the 379th Bombardment Wing. The alert commitment was increased to half the squadron's aircraft in 1962 and the four squadron pattern no longer met the alert cycle commitment, so the squadron was inactivated on 1 January 1962.
- Constituted 527th Bombardment Squadron (Heavy) on 28 Oct 1942
- Activated on 3 Nov 1942
- Inactivated on 25 Jul 1945
- Redesignated 527th Bombardment Squadron (Medium) on 20 Aug 1958
- Activated on 1 Nov 1958
- Discontinued on 9 Jan 1961
- 379th Bombardment Group, 3 Nov 1942-25 Jul 1945
- 379th Bombardment Wing, 1 Nov 1958 – 9 Jan 1961
- Geiger Field, Washington, 3 Nov 1942
- Wendover Field, Utah, 19 Nov 1942
- Sioux City Army Air Base, Iowa, 3 Feb-Apr 1943
- RAF Kimbolton (AAF-117), England, 21 May 1943 – 12 June 1945
- Casablanca Airfield, French Morocco, 17 Jun-25 July 1945
- Homestead Air Force Base, Florida, 1 Nov 1958-9 Jan 1961
- Schake, p. 220 (note 43)
- "Abstract (Unclassified), History of the Strategic Bomber since 1945 (Top Secret, downgraded to Secret)". Air Force History Index. 1 April 1975. Retrieved March 4, 2014.
- Maurer, Maurer, ed. (1982) . Combat Squadrons of the Air Force, World War II (PDF) (reprint ed.). Washington, DC: Office of Air Force History. ISBN 0-405-12194-6. LCCN 70605402. OCLC 72556.
- Schake, Col Kurt W. (1998). Strategic Frontier: American Bomber Bases Overseas, 1950-1960 (PDF). Trondheim, Norway: Norwegian University of Science and Technology. ISBN 978-8277650241. Retrieved July 27, 2015.