816th Expeditionary Airlift Squadron

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816th Expeditionary Airlift Squadron
816th Expeditionary Airlift Squadron - C-130 - 2010.jpg
C-17 Globemaster III aircraft assigned to the 816th Expeditionary Airlift Squadron, sits on the flight line during pre-flight checks prior to an aerial transport of an M1A1 Abrams tank to Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom on 28 November 2010.
Active 1942–1945; 1953–1960; 2006–present
Country United States
Branch  United States Air Force
  • European-African-Middle Eastern Campaign Medal streamer.png
    World War II – EAME Theater
  • Korean Service Medal - Streamer.png
    Korean War
  • Streamer AFGCS.PNG
    Afghanistan Campaign
  • Streamer IQCS.PNG
    Iraq Campaign
  • Streamer PUC Army.PNG
    Distinguished Unit Citation (2x)
  • US Air Force Outstanding Unit Award - Stremer.jpg
    Air Force Outstanding Unit Award
Emblem of the 816th Expeditionary Airlift Squadron 816th Expeditionary Airlift Squadron - Emblem.png
An pilot from the 816 EAS programs a JPADS boudle for precision airdrop from one of their C-17s

The 816th Expeditionary Airlift Squadron (816 EAS) is a provisional United States Air Force unit. It is assigned to the 385th Air Expeditionary Group, stationed at Al Udeid Air Base, Doha, Qatar[1] and has a few detachments. It is currently engaged in combat operations in Southwest Asia.

During World War II as the 816th Bombardment Squadron, it was one of the last B-17 Flying Fortress heavy bomber squadrons deployed to Southern Italy as part of the Fifteenth Air Force 483d Bombardment Group in March 1944.


The 816 EAS is equipped with C-17 Globemaster III transports and supports Coalition forces engaging in combat operations as part of Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Iraqi Freedom, and also operates in the Horn of Africa.

The mission of the 816th EAS is to provide global strategic airlift, airdrop, aeromedical evacuation and humanitarian relief, to create an air bridge for personnel, equipment and supplies throughout their assigned areas of responsibility.

During a recent deployment of personnel. the aircrews flew about 3,000 sorties in the C-17 Globemaster III, logged more than 8,000 flying hours and airlifted more than 148 million pounds of cargo and more than 37,000 airmen, soldiers, sailors, marines and distinguished visitors throughout Southwest Asia.


Established in late 1943 as a B-17 Flying Fortress heavy bombardment squadron, trained under Third Air Force in Florida. Was deployed to the Mediterranean Theater of Operations (MTO), being assigned to Fifteenth Air Force in Southern Italy. Engaged in long-range strategic bombardment of enemy military, industrial and transport targets, including oil refineries and production oilfields in Italy; France; Southern Germany; Austria and the Balkans. Continued strategic bombardment until German capitulation in May 1945.

After V-E Day, was assigned to Air Transport Command Green Project which was the movement of troops from Pisa Airfield staging area in Morocco. B-17s were dearmed with flooring and seats for 25 passengers installed. Crew consisted of Pilot, co-Pilot, Navigator and Flight Engineer. Carried passengers from Pisa to Port Lyautey Airfield, French Morocco where ATC transports moved them across the Atlantic or to Dakar for movement via South Atlantic Transport Route. Inactivated in Italy in September 1945.

Reactivated by Far East Air Force in 1952 in Japan as a C-119 Troop Carrier squadron. Engaged in combat operations in South Korea transporting personnel and supplies to front-line units, under hazardous conditions. Also evacuated wounded personnel to hospital facilities in South Korea and Japan. Remained in Japan after the 1953 Armistice, providing intra-theater transport within Japan, South Korea and Okinawa, inactivated in 1956.

Reactivated in 2006 as a C-17 Globemaster III squadron as part of the Global War on Terrorism. Provides intra-theater transport within Southwest Asia and other locations as directed in support of units engaged in combat operations.


816th TCS Korean War patch
816th Bombardment Squadron emblem
  • Constituted 816th Bombardment Squadron (Heavy) on 14 September 1943
Activated on 20 September 1943
Inactivated on 25 September 1945
  • Re-designated 816th Troop Carrier Squadron (Medium) on 15 November 1952

. Activated on 1 January 1953

Inactivated on 18 September 1956
  • Re-designated 816th Expeditionary Airlift Squadron and converted to provisional status, 1 October 2006.
Activated on 1 October 2006


Attached to: 379th Expeditionary Operations Group, 1 October 2006–present



See also[edit]


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

External links[edit]