|Country United States|
Role Air Defense
|Type Fighter Interceptor|
Part of Air Defense Command
|Active 1945-1946, 1946-1947, 1953–1955|
Branch United States Air Force
The 529th Air Defense Group is a disbanded United States Air Force organization. Its last assignment was with the 25th Air Division at Paine Field, Washington. It was inactivated on 18 August 1955. The group was originally activated as a support unit for the 2d Bombardment Group at the end of World War II in Italy and then acted as a depot organization until inactivating in 1946.
The group was activated once again in 1953, when ADC established it as the headquarters for a dispersed fighter-interceptor squadron and the medical, maintenance, and administrative squadrons supporting it. It was replaced in 1955 when ADC transferred its mission, equipment, and personnel to the 326th Fighter Group in a project that replaced air defense groups commanding fighter squadrons with fighter groups with distinguished records during World War II.
World War II
The group was activated at Amendola Airfield, Italy as the 529th Air Service Group shortly after V-E Day as part of a reorganization of Army Air Forces (AAF) support groups in which the AAF replaced Service Groups that included personnel from other branches of the Army and supported two combat groups with Air Service Groups including only Air Corps units. The group was designed to support a single combat group. Its 955th Air Engineering Squadron provided maintenance that was beyond the capability of the combat group, its 779th Air Materiel Squadron handled all supply matters, and its Headquarters & Base Services Squadron provided other support. The 529th supported the 2d Bombardment Group (Bomb Gp). The group moved with the 2d Bomb Gp to Foggia, Italy where it added support responsibility for all military installations in the Foggia Airfield Complex. After the 2nd Bomb Gp returned to the United States, the group was apparently used as a depot unit until it was inactivated in 1946.
The group was again activated later that year and moved to Dow Field, Maine, where it provided support for the 14th Fighter Group. The group was inactivated and replaced by 14th Airdrome Group, 14th Station Medical Group, and 14th Maintenance & Supply Group in the experimental Wing/Base reorganization of 1947, designed to unify control at air bases. The group was disbanded in 1948.
The group was reconstituted, redesignated as the 529th Air Defense Group and activated at Paine Field on 18 February 1953 with responsibility for air defense of the Northwestern United States. The 529th was assigned the 83d Fighter-Interceptor Squadron (FIS), which was already stationed at Paine Field, flying Republic F-84 Thunderjets, as its operational component. The 83d FIS had been assigned directly to the 4704th Defense Wing. The group also replaced the 86th Air Base Squadron as USAF host organization at Paine Field. It was assigned three squadrons to perform its support responsibilities. It was also assigned the 17th Crash Rescue Boat Flight for water rescue duties.
By December 1953, the 83d FIS converted to radar equipped and Mighty Mouse rocket armed North American F-86D Sabres. When the 4704th Defense Wing was discontinued in 1954, the group was reassigned directly to the 25th Air Division. The group was inactivated and replaced by 326th Fighter Group (Air Defense) in 1955 as part of Air Defense Command's Project Arrow, which was designed to bring back on the active list the fighter units which had compiled memorable records in the two world wars. The group was disbanded again in 1984.