USAAF/USAF Air Commando and Special Operations units from WWII to 2002
59 Years of Commando Service
World War II Air Commando Units
1st Air Commando Group, China-Burma-India
Formed as a Fighter, Bomber, Transport and Light Plane and in late 1944 organized as follows:
5th and 6th Fighter Squadrons.
164th Liaison Squadron activated 1 Sept 1944 and inactivated 3 Nov 1945.
165th Liaison Squadron, activated 1 Sept 1944 and inactivated 3 Nov 1945
166th Liaison Squadron, activated 1 Sept 1944 and inactivated 3 Nov 1945
319th Troop Carrier Squadron
2nd Air Commando Group, China-Burma-India, activated 25 April 1944
1st and 2nd Fighter Squadrons.
127th, 155th and 156th Liaison Squadrons.
317th Troop Carrier Squadron activated 1 May 1944 and inactivated 28Feb 1946.
327th, 328th, 340th and 342nd Airdrome Squadrons.
236th Medical Dispensary.
3rd Air Commando Group, Southwest Pacific
3rd Fighter Squadron activated April 1944 and inactivated Feb 1946.
4th fighter Squadron activated 1 May 1944 and inactivated Feb 1946.
157th Liaison Squadron activated 23 Feb 1944 and inactivated?
159th Liaison Squadron activated 1 Mar 1944 and inactivated 31 May 1946.
160th Liaison Squadron activated Mar 1944 and inactivated Dec 1945.
318th Troop Carrier Squadron activated 1 May 1944 and inactivated 25 Mar 1946.
334th Airdrome Squadron activated 1 May 1944 and inactivated 8 Nov 1945.
335th Airdrome Squadron activated 1 May 1944 and inactivated Feb 1946.
341st Airdrome Squadron activated 31 May 1944 and inactivated Sept 1945.
343rd Airdrome Squadron activated 1 May 1944 and inactivated 29 Oct 1945.
237th Medical Dispensary activated 15 Mar 1944 and inactivated 31 Dec 1945
Air Commando and Special Operations aircraft used at major bases during the Vietnam War
Republic of Vietnam (RVN)
Base Unit Aircraft/Call Sign Tail Code
Bien Hoa 8 AS/3 TFW A-37B CF
90 AS/14 SOW A-37B CG
604 SOS/3 TFW A-37A/B CK
8 SOS/14 SOW A-37B EK
FS©/3 TFW F-5A None-transferred its 18 aircraft to 522nd FS, VNAF, 17 Apr 1967
12 ACS/315 ACW UC-123B/K Ranch Hand
Da Nang Det 1/1 SOW C-123K, U-10A/B AA
311 ACS/315 ACW C-123B/K to 315 TAW Jan 1970 WV
Nha Trang 17 SOS/14 SOW AC-119G Shadow EF
5 SOS/14 SOW C-47D, U-10B/D EO
9 SOS/14 SOW C-47, O-2B ER
15 SOS/14 SOW MC-130 Deleted
1st Flt Det SOG C-123 Deleted
20 SOS/14 SOW CH-3, UH-1 Deleted
310 ACS/315 ACW C-123B/K to 315TAW Jan 1970 WM
Pleiku 1 ACS/14 ACW A-1E/G EC
3 SOS/14 SOW AC-47 Spooky EL
4 SOS/14 SOW AC-47 Spooky EN
6 SOS/633 SOW A-1E/H Spads ET
Tan Son Nhut 19ACS/315 ACW C-123B/K to 315 TAW Jan 1970 WE
(Saigon) 309 ACS/315 ACW C-123B/K to 315 TAW Jan 1970 WH
NKP 18 SOS/14 SOW AC-119K Stinger EH
609 SOS/56 SOW A-26A Nimrods TA
1 SOS/56 SOW A-1E/G/H/J Hobos TC
606 SOS/56 SOW C-123K Candle TO
22 SOS/56 SOW A-1W/G/H/J Zorro TS
21 SOS/14 SOW CH-3
Ubon 16 SOS/8 TFW AC-130A Spectre EA
16 SOS/8 TFW AC-130A/E Spectre FT
16 SOS/8 TFW AC-130H WP
Udorn 4 SOS/432 TRW AC-47D 1969-1970 OS
Howard AFB 24 SOS/24 ACW A-37, UH-1N HW
Barksdale AFB, LA
England AFB, LA
Grissom AFB, IN
Hurlburt Vield, FL
Lockbourne AFB, OH
Luke AFB, AZ
Otis AFB, MA
Pease AFB, NH
Pope AFB, NC
Shaw AFB, SC
USAF Special Operations Units January 2002
16th SOW Hurlburt Field, Florida
4th SOS ‘Ghostriders’ AC-130U
6th SOS ‘Commandos’ UH-1N, CASA 212-200
8th SOS ‘Blackbirds MC-130E, C-130E
16th SOS ‘Spectre’ AC-130H
20th SOS ‘Green Hornets’ MH-53J, NCH-53A
9th SOS ‘Night Wings’ MC-130P Eglin AFB, Florida
58th Special Operations Wing (Training Unit), Kirtland AFB, New Mexico
512th RQS ‘Jolly’ HH-60G, UH-1N
550th SOS ‘Wolf Pack’ MC-130H/N/P
551st SOS ‘Black Knights’ MH-53J
919th SOW, AFRC Duke Field, Florida
711th SOS MC-130E, C-130E
5th SOS MC-130P, Eglin AFB, Florida
352nd SOG RAF Mildenhall, England
7th SOS Aircommandos’ MC-130H
21st SOS ‘Dust Devils’ MH-53M
67th SOS ‘Night Owls’ MC-1`30P
353rd SOG Kadena AB, Japan
1st SOS MC-130H, C-130E
17th SOS MC-130P
31st SOS ‘Black Knights’ MH-53M, Osan AFB, ROK
Sources for these are as follows: