139th Airlift Wing History
Published November 17, 2011
139th Airlift Wing History
By Col (Ret) Vernon W. James
The '''139th Airlift Wing''' (AMC) is located at Rosecrans Air National Guard Base in Saint Joseph, Missouri. It is the home of the Advanced Airlift Tactics Training Center. The 139th AW is one of the two flying wings currently in the Missouri Air National Guard. The flying unit is the 180th Airlift Squadron which operationally flies the Lockheed C-130 Hercules aircraft.
The 139th Airlift Wing has its roots in the formation of the 180th Bombardment Squadron (Light) which was one of the first federally recognized Air National Guard units in the nation. The 180th BS (L) received federal recognition on 22 August 1946 by an inspection team from 2nd Air Force. The 180th BS was assigned the Douglas B-26B/C "Invader" light bomber. Lt Col John B. Logan, who was instrumental in forming the unit, was named as the first Squadron Commander and would be later named the Base Commander. He had accumulated more than 250 combat hours in 22 combat missions as a B-17 pilot and had been awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross, Air Medal with Four Oak Leaf Clusters and campaign ribbons representing the Northern France, Central Europe and Normandy theaters of operation. The 180th BS (L) flew the B-26 until 1958.
· On 14 April 1962, the 139th Air Transport Group was allotted to the state of Missouri at Rosecrans Air National Guard Base, Saint Joseph, Missouri. Federal recognition was extended on that date. The gaining command was the Military Air Transport Service (MATS).
· Redesignated as the 139th Military Airlift Group on 1 January 1966 when the Military Air Transport Service was deactivated and superseded by the Military Airlift Command (MAC).
· Redesignated as the 139th Air Refueling Group on 6 September 1969. Federal recognitions was extended on that date. The gaining command was the Tactical Air Command (TAC).
· Redesignated as the 139th Tactical Airlift Group on 1 October 1976. Federal recognition was extended on 16 October 1976. The gaining command was the Military Airlift Command (MAC).
· On 31 May 1991, the 139th Tactical Airlift Group was consolidated with the 139th Military Airlift Group which had been inactivated on 5 September 1969.
· Redesignated as the 139th Airlift Group on 8 April 1992. The gaining command was the Air Mobility Command (AMC). The gaining command was changed from Air Mobility Command to Air Combat Command on 1 October 1993.
· Redesignated as the 139th Airlift Wing on 1 October 1995. The gaining command was Air Combat Command. In 1997, all C-130 units were changed from Air Combat Command to Air Mobility Command.
139th Operations Group
· 180th Airlift Squadron
· 241st Air Traffic Control Squadron
· 139th Operations Support Flight
139th Mission Support Group
· 139th Civil Engineer Squadron
· 139th Communications Flight
· 139th Mission Support Flight
· 139th Aerial Port Flight
· 139th Logistics Readiness Squadron
· 139th Security Forces Squadron
· 139th Services Flight
139th Maintenance Group
· 139th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron
· 139th Maintenance Squadron
· 139th Maintenance Operations Flight
139th Medical Group
Advanced Airlift Tactics Training Center (AATTC)
C-130 HerculesH2 (1987-Present) (The C-130H2 aircraft were brand new aircraft direct from the Lockheed plant. The first aircraft named the "Spirit of St. Joseph" arrived at Rosecrans ANGB on March 6, 1987.)
C-130A Hercules (1976-1987)
KC-97 Stratotanker (1968-1976
C-97 Stratofreighter (1961-1968)
RF-84 Thunderflash (1958-1961)
F-84 Thunderjet (1957-1958)
B-26B/C Invader (1946-1957)