Samiksha Jaiswal (Editor)

74th Air Refueling Squadron

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Country  United States
Type  Aerial refueling
74th Air Refueling Squadron
Active  9 February 1943 – 31 July 1946 15 March 1947 – 2 May 1951 1 August 1992 - Present
Branch  United States Air Force
Part of  Air Force Reserve Command 4th Air Force 434th Air Refueling Wing 434th Operations Group
Garrison/HQ  Grissom Joint Air Reserve Base

The 74th Air Refueling Squadron (74 ARS) is a United States Air Force Reserve squadron, assigned to the 434th Operations Group, stationed at Grissom Joint Air Reserve Base, Indiana.



The 74th ARS operates the KC-135 Stratotanker aircraft conducting aerial refueling missions.


Established in early 1943 as a C-47 Skytrain transport squadron under First Air Force, later trained under I Troop Carrier Command in the eastern United States. Deployed to England in late 1943, being assigned to Ninth Air Force in England, IX Troop Carrier Command to participate in the buildup of forces prior to the Allied landings in France during D-Day in June 1944.

Engaged in combat operations by dropping paratroops into Normandy on D-Day (6 June 1944) and releasing gliders with reinforcements on the following day. The unit received a Distinguished Unit Citation and a French citation for these missions.

After the Normandy invasion the squadron ferried supplies in the United Kingdom. The squadron also hauled food, clothing, medicine, gasoline, ordnance equipment, and other supplies to the front lines and evacuated patients to rear zone hospitals. It dropped paratroops near Nijmegen and towed gliders carrying reinforcements during the airborne attack on the Netherlands. In December, it participated in the Battle of the Bulge by releasing gliders with supplies for the 101st Airborne Division near Bastogne.

Moved to France in early 1945, and participated in the Western Allied invasion of Germany, participating in the air assault across the Rhine River in March 1945, each aircraft towed two gliders with troops of the 17th Airborne Division and released them near Wesel.

Returned to the United States in August, 1945, becoming a domestic troop carrier squadron for Continental Air Forces, inactivated July 1946.

The squadron trained in troop carrier duties from, 1947-1951. It has performed air refueling missions worldwide since 1992. Since late 1993 the 74th periodically deployed to Italy and other western European locations in support of NATO operations in the Balkans.

Operations and Decorations

  • Combat Operations. Airborne assaults on Normandy, the Netherlands, and Germany; relief of Bastogne; aerial transportation of passengers and cargo in ETO during World War II. Performed air refueling missions worldwide since 1992. Since late 1993, periodically deployed to Italy and other western European location in support of NATO operations in the Balkans.
  • Campaigns. World War II: Egypt-Libya; Tunisia; Sicily; Naples-Foggia; Rome-Arno; Normandy; Northern France; Rhineland; Central Europe.
  • Decorations. Distinguished Unit Citation: France, [6-7] Jun 1944. Air Force Outstanding Unit Awards: 1 Aug 1992 – 31 Aug 1993; 1 Sep 1994-31 Aug 1996. French Croix de Guerre with Palm: 6-7 Jun 1944; 20-28 Aug 1944. French Fourragere.
  • Lineage

  • Constituted 74th Troop Carrier Squadron on 30 Jan 1943
  • Activated on 9 Feb 1943 Inactivated on 31 Jul 1946
  • Activated in the Reserve on 15 Mar 1947
  • Re-designated: 74th Troop Carrier Squadron, Medium on 1 Jul 1949 Ordered to Active Service on 1 May 1951 Inactivated on 2 May 1951
  • Re-designated: 74th Air Refueling Squadron, and activated in the Reserve, on 1 Aug 1992.
  • Assignments

  • 434th Troop Carrier Group, 9 Feb 1943 – 31 Jul 1946; 15 Mar 1947-2 May 1951
  • 434th Operations Group, 1 Aug 1992 – present
  • Stations

  • Alliance Army Air Field, Nebraska, 9 Feb 1943
  • Baer Field, Indiana, 4-28 Sep 1943
  • RAF Fulbeck (AAF-488), England, Oct 1943
  • RAF Welford (AAF-474), England, Nov 1943
  • RAF Fulbeck (AAF-488), England, 10 Jan 1944
  • RAF Aldermaston (AAF-467), England, 3 Mar 1944
  • Mourmelon-le-Grand Airfield (A-80), France, Feb-Jun 1945
  • Baer Field, Indiana, 5 Aug 1945
  • Alliance Army Air Field, Nebraska, 15 Sep 1945
  • George Army Airfield, Illinois, 11 Oct 1945
  • Greenville Air Force Base, South Carolina, 2 Feb-31 Jul 1946
  • Stout Army Air Field, Indiana, 15 Mar 1947
  • Atterbury AFB, Indiana, 1 Jul 1949 – 2 May 1951
  • Grissom AFB (later ARB), Indiana, 1 Aug 1992 – present
  • References

    74th Air Refueling Squadron Wikipedia