729th Airlift Squadron

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729th Airlift Squadron
Air Force Reserve Command.png
C-141B 729AS 452AMW GrandCanyon 1998.jpeg
Squadron C-141B Starlifter over the Grand Canyon in 1998
Active 1943-1945; 1947-1952; 1952-present
Country  United States
Branch  United States Air Force
Role Airlift
Part of Air Force Reserve Command
Garrison/HQ March Air Reserve Base
Engagements European Theater of Operations
Korean War
Decorations Distinguished Unit Citation
Air Force Outstanding Unit Award
Republic of Korea Presidential Unit Citation
Republic of Vietnam Gallantry Cross with Palm
729th Airlift Squadron emblem (approved 29 April 1980)[1] 729th Airlift Squadron.png
729th Bombardment Squadron emblem (approved 1 October 1943)[2] 729th Bombardment Squadron - Emblem.png
Aircraft flown
Transport C-17 Globemaster III

The 729th Airlift Squadron is a United States Air Force Reserve squadron, assigned to the 452d Operations Group, stationed at March Joint Air Reserve Base, California.


It operates C-17 Globemaster III aircraft providing global airlift any time, any place.


Established in mid-1943 as a B-17 Flying Fortress heavy bombardment squadron; assigned to II Bomber Command for training, primarily in the Pacific Northwest. Deployed to the European Theater of Operations (ETO) in January 1944, being assigned to Eighth Air Force in England. Engaged in strategic bombardment operations over Occupied Europe and Nazi Germany, becoming one of the most highly decorated squadron of the Air Offensive. Engaged in strategic bombardment operations until the German Capitulation in May 1945. Returned to the United States and prepared for B-29 transition training, however Japanese Capitulation in August led to unit's inactivation in November.

Reactivated in the reserves in 1947 as a B-29 Superfortress bomber squadron, assigned to Long Beach AAF, California. Never equipped with Superfortresses, redesignated as a light bomb squadron and received B-26 Invaders in 1949. Moved to George AFB in 1950 when Long Beach was closed. Was deployed to Japan in August 1950 for combat duty during the Korean War, engaged in night bombardment missions over both North and South Korea. Inactivated in May 1952 with assets being reassigned to active-duty units.

It has airlifted personnel and cargo worldwide since 1960. Missions the 729th has flown included humanitarian relief, aeromedical flights, and airdrops of supplies and paratroopers.


  • Constituted as the 729th Bombardment Squadron (Heavy) on 14 May 1943
Activated on 1 June 1943
Redesignated 729th Bombardment Squadron, Heavy on 20 August 1943
Inactivated on 28 August 1945
  • Redesignated 729th Bombardment Squadron, Very Heavy on 13 May 1947
Activated in the reserve on 12 July 1947
Redesignated 729th Bombardment Squadron, Light on 27 June 1949
Ordered to active service on 10 August 1950
Redesignated 729th Bombardment Squadron, Light, Night Intruder on 25 June 1951
Relieved from active service and inactivated, on 10 May 1952
  • Redesignated 729th Tactical Reconnaissance Squadron on 6 June 1952
Activated in the reserve on 13 June 1952
Redesignated: 729th Bombardment Squadron, Tactical on 22 May 1955
Redesignated: 729th Troop Carrier Squadron, Medium on 1 July 1957
Redesignated: 729th Tactical Airlift Squadron on 1 July 1967
Redesignated: 729th Military Airlift Squadron (Associate) on 25 April 1969
Redesignated: 729th Airlift Squadron (Associate) on 1 February 1992
Redesignated: 729th Airlift Squadron on 1 Apr 1993[1]






  1. ^ a b c d e Robertson, Patsy (November 26, 2012). "Factsheet 729 Airlift Squadron (AFRC)". Air Force Historical Research Agency. Retrieved October 23, 2016. 
  2. ^ Maurer, Combat Squadrons, pp. 724-725


 This article incorporates public domain material from the Air Force Historical Research Agency website http://www.afhra.af.mil/.

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