50th Tactical Fighter Wing History
The 50 TFW was orginally constituted in 1940 as the 50th Pursuit Group (Interceptor) at Selfridge Field, Michigan. During war years (of WWII), the wing took part in the aerial invasion of Normany on 6 to 7 June 1944.
After the war, the wing returned to the United States and was deactivated in 1945. On January 1, 1953, the wing was redisignated teh 50th Fighter Bomber Group and assigned to the Tactical Air Command. The following August, the wing officially moved from Clovis AFB, New Mexico, to Hahn Air Base, Germany with f-86 Sabrejets. the assigned aircraft squadrons which accompanied the wing were the 10th, 81st, and the 417th Fighter-Bomber Squadrons.
In 1956 , the wing moved to Toul-Rosiers Air Base, France. The 7424th Air Base Group was tasked with the responsibility for Hahn Air Base and provided support for the 461st Fighter Day Squadron , 496th Figher Interceptor Squadron and HQ 38th Tactical Missile Wing. Also, during that period, the 7425th Air Base Group was renamed the 50th Air Base Group.
During 1957-1958, the wing converted to F-100D Supersabre aircraft. In December of 1959 the wing returned to Hahn Air Base from France. In 1961 the Wing provided fighter coverage for ground troops during the Berlin wall crisis.
The Wing converted to F-4 Phantom C and D models. In 1970 the 496th Tactical Figher Squadron exchanged its F-102 Delta Dagger aircraft for F-4E and was redesignated as a tactical fighter squadron while retaining its air defense mission.
The 50 TFW at Hahn Air Base was selected as the first USAF European location to convert to General Dynamics' F-16 Fighting Falcon multi-role fighter. The wing began receiving its first operational F-16s late in 1981 and in spring of 1982 all the F-4s at the a50 TFW were replaced by the Fighting Falcon. Official F-16 arrival ceremonies were held at Hahn Air Base on June 9, 1982.
Hahn Air Base was originally a German Wehrmacht air base during WWII and then was used by the French Air Force for a number of years until the 7356th Air Base Squadron arrived at Hahn Air Base in September of 1951. In the mid 1990s the base was returned to the Republic of Germany. Presently the air field is used for commercial air cargo operations to alleviate air traffic pressure at Frankfurt am Main International Airport.
Sep 25 2000 02:22:00:000AM