1st

Air Commando

Squadron 

 

 

Recovery of RB26L (44-35782) that was lost December 6, 1963

All crewmembers perished in the crash

 

Capt Gary W. Bitton - Pilot Capt. Thomas F. Gorton - Instructor Navigator Capt. Norman R. Davison - Navigator Airman 2nd Class Richard D. Hill -Photographer Unidentified SVAF Crewman

 

Images Courtesy of Joseph W. Brown Jr.

Lineage

1st Special Operations Squadron (constituted 1st Air Commando Squadron, Composite, and activated, on 17 Jun 1963; organized on 8 Jul 1963; redesignated: 1st Air Commando Squadron, Fighter, on 15 Aug 1967; 1st Special Operations Squadron on 1 Aug 1968). 

Assignments

Pacific Air Forces, 17 Jun 1963; 34th Tactical Group, 8 Jul 1963; 6251st Tactical Fighter Wing, 8 Jul 1965 (attached to 3d Tactical Fighter Wing, 21 Nov 1965–8 Mar 1966); 2d Air Division, 18 Feb 1966; 14th Air Commando Wing, 8 Mar 1966; 56th Air Commando (later, 56th Special Operations) Wing, 20 Dec 1967; 18th Tactical Fighter Wing, 15 Dec 1972; 18th Tactical Fighter Group, 1 May 1978. 

Stations

Bien Hoa AB, South Vietnam, 8 Jul 1963; Pleiku AB, South Vietnam, 5 Jan 1966; Nakhon Phanom RTAFB, Thailand, 20 Dec 1967; Kadena AB, Japan, 15 Dec 1972 (segment of squadron operated from Nakhon Phanom RTAFB, 15 Dec 1972–28 Jan 1973).

Aircraft

B–26, 1963–1964; T–28, 1963–1964; U–10, 1963–1966; C–47, 1963–1966; RB–26, 1963–1964; A–1, 1964–1972; FC–47, 1964–1965; AC–47, 1965; C(later, MC)–130, 1972–. 

Operations

Combat in Southeast Asia, 8 Jul 1963–7 Nov 1972 and 15 Dec 1972–28 Jan 1973. Trained Vietnamese Air Force pilots in counterinsurgency operations, Jul 1963–Nov 1972.

Honors

Vietnam: Vietnam Advisory; Vietnam Defensive; Vietnam Air; Vietnam Air Offensive; Vietnam Air Offensive, Phase II; Vietnam Air Offensive,Phase III; Vietnam Air/Ground; Vietnam Air Offensive, Phase IV; TET 69/ Counteroffensive; Vietnam Summer-Fall, 1969; Vietnam Winter-Spring, 1970; Sanctuary Counteroffensive; Southwest Monsoon; Commando Hunt V; Commando Hunt VI; Commando Hunt VII; Vietnam Ceasefire.

Decorations 

Presidential Unit Citations (Southeast Asia): 1 Aug 1964–15 Apr 1965;

8 Mar 1966–7 Mar 1967; 1 Nov 1968–1 May 1969; 1 Oct 1969–30 Apr 1970; 1 Apr–15 Dec 1972. Air Force Outstanding Unit Awards with Combat "V" Device: 1 Dec 1970–30 Nov 1971; 1 Dec 1971–29 Feb 1972. Air Force Outstanding Unit Awards: 1 May 1963–31 Jul 1964; 1 Apr 1974–31 Mar 1976 Republic of Vietnam Gallantry Cross with Palm: 1 Oct 1967–15 Dec 1972. 

Units:

Det#2 1st Air Commando Squadron at Soc Trang


Tail Code:  

Aircraft:  

Vietnam Service: 


The majority of the Information on this page is from the USAF Historical Research Agency: http://www.maxwell.af.mil/au/afhra/

 

 

Looking for information on this and other units that served or supported the Air War in SEA. 

If you have a story, scans of aircraft, bases, ships, unit personnel, insignia or operations that you would like to see posted on these pages please contact the webmaster at the mailbox below.

Thanks for serving. 

Looking forward to your input.

 

 


 



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