|12th Airlift Flight|
375th Operations Group C-21 Learjet
|Active||1940–1945; 1946-1961; 1993–2005|
|Branch||United States Air Force|
|Part of||Air Combat Command|
|Engagements||Mediterranean Theater of Operations|
|Decorations||Distinguished Unit Citation|
Air Force Outstanding Unit Award
|12th Airlift Flight emblem (approved 7 February 1994)|
|12th Troop Carrier Squadron emblem (approved 11 September 1944)|
The 12th Airlift Flight is an inactive United States Air Force unit.
World War II
Established as part of the Army Air Corps in January 1938 at Olmsted Field, Pennsylvania but not activated until 1 December 1940. Not equipped or manned. Unit designation transferred to Westover Field, Massachusetts, but not equipped or manned until after the Pearl Harbor Attack. Equipped with Douglas C-47 Skytrain transports and trained for combat resupply and casualty evacuation mission.
Was ordered deployed to England, assigned to Eighth Air Force in June 1942. Performed intra-theater transport flights of personnel, supply and equipment within England during summer and fall of 1942, reassigned to Twelfth Air Force after Operation Torch invasion of North Africa, stationed at Tafaraoui Airfield, Algeria. In combat, performed resupply and evacuation missions across Morocco, Algeria and Tunisia during North African Campaign. During June 1943, the unit began training with gliders in preparation for Operation Husky, the invasion of Sicily. It towed gliders to Syracuse, Sicily and dropped paratroopers at Catania during the operation. After moving to Sicily, the squadron airdropped supplies to escaped prisoners of war in Northern Italy in October. Operated from Sicily until December until moving to Italian mainland in December.
Supported Italian Campaign during balance of 1944 supporting partisans in the Balkans. Its unarmed aircraft flew at night over uncharted territory, landing at small unprepared airfields to provide guns, ammunition, clothing, medical supplies, gasoline, and mail to the partisans. It even carried jeeps and mules as cargo. On return trips it evacuated wounded partisans, evadees and escaped prisoners. These operations earned the squadron the Distinguished Unit Citation. It also dropped paratroopers at Megava, Greece in October 1944 and propaganda leaflets in the Balkans in the Mediterranean Theater of Operations until end of combat in Europe, May, 1945.
After hostilities ended, was transferred to Waller Field, Trinidad attached to the Air Transport Command Transported personnel and equipment from Brazil to South Florida along the South Atlantic Air Transport Route. Squadron picked up personnel and equipment in Brazil or bases in Northern South America with final destination being Miami, Boca Raton Army Airfield or Morrison Fields in South Florida.
Was reassigned to the United States Air Forces in Europe (USAFE), September 1946, performing intro-theater cargo flights based at Munich Air Base. Transferred to Kaufbeuren Air Base when Munich Air Base became a civilian airport. Was re-equipped with Douglas C-54 Skymaster aircraft and deployed to RAF Fassberg during 1948 Berlin Airlift. Flew continuous missions across hostile Soviet Zone of Germany in Berlin Air Corridor, transporting supplies and equipment to airports in West Berlin, 1948-1949. Later operated from Rhein-Main Air Base and Wiesbaden Air Base in American Zone of Occupation, later part of West Germany, until blockade ended. Remained as part of USAFE until 1961, being upgraded to Fairchild C-82 Packet and later Fairchild C-119 Flying Boxcar transports as part of USAFE 322d Air Division based in West Germany and France. Inactivated as part of downsizing of USAFE bases in France, 1961.
The squadron was redesignated the 11th Airlift Flight and activated at Langley Air Force Base in May 1993. It was equipped with C-21 Learjets to provide airlift for high ranking officers of Air Combat Command and other headquarters in the Norfolk-Hampron Roads area. In 1997, this mission was transferred to Air Mobility Command. The flight continued the mission until it was inactivated at the end of July 2005.
- Constituted as the 12th Transport Squadron on 1 January 1938
- Activated on 1 December 1940
- Redesignated 12th Troop Carrier Squadron on 5 July 1942
- Inactivated on 31 July 1945
- Activated on 30 September 1946
- Redesignated: 12th Troop Carrier Squadron, Medium on 1 July 1948
- Redesignated: 12th Troop Carrier Squadron, Heavy on 5 November 1948
- Redesignated: 12th Troop Carrier Squadron, Medium on 16 November 1949
- Discontinued and inactivated on 8 January 1961
- Redesignated 12th Airlift Flight on 1 April 1993
- 60th Transport Group (later 60th Troop Carrier) Group), 1 December 1940 – 31 July 1945
- 60th Troop Carrier Group, 30 September 1946
- 60th Troop Carrier Wing, 12 March 1957
- 322d Air Division, 25 September 1958 – 8 January 1961
- 1st Operations Group, 1 May 1993
- 457th Airlift Squadron, 1 April 1997 – 31 July 2005
- Douglas C-47 Skytrain, 1942–1945; 1946–1948
- Douglas C-54 Skymaster, 1948–1949
- Fairchild C-82 Packet, 1949–1953
- Fairchild C-119 Flying Boxcar, 1953–1960
- Gates Learjet C-21 Learjet, 1997-2005
- Haulman, Daniel L. (2 January 2008). "Factsheet 12 Airlift Flight (ACC)". Air Force Historical Research Agency. Retrieved 26 May 2018.
- Maurer, Combat Squadrons, pp. 69-70
- 10th Airlift Squadron Public Page Archived 25 October 2007 at the Wayback Machine[failed verification]
- Research Division, Air Force Historical Research Agency, Air Force Organization Change Status Report, July 2005, Maxwell AFB, AL
- Lineage, including assignments, through 15 October 1996 in Haulman, Factsheet 12 Airlift Flight.
- Haulman, Daniel L. (7 November 2017). "Factsheet 1 Operations Group (ACC)". Air Force Historical Research Agency. Retrieved 26 May 2018.
- Station number in Anderson.
- Stations through 15 October 1996 in Haulman, Factsheet 12 Airlift Flight, except as noted.
- Anderson, Capt. Barry (1985). Army Air Forces Stations: A Guide to the Stations Where U.S. Army Air Forces Personnel Served in the United Kingdom During World War II (PDF). Maxwell AFB, AL yes: Research Division, USAF Historical Research Center. Archived from the original (PDF) on 23 January 2016. Retrieved 28 June 2017.
- Maurer, Maurer, ed. (1983) . Air Force Combat Units of World War II (PDF) (reprint ed.). Washington, DC: Office of Air Force History. ISBN 0-912799-02-1. LCCN 61060979. Retrieved 17 December 2016.
- 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.