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History of the 110th Attack Wing
The 110th Attack Wing traces its lineage back to WWII with the 361st Fighter Group, 375th Fighter Squadron (FS). The 375th served in the European theater until inactivation. The 375th was reactivated in 1946 and redesignated the 172nd Fighter Squadron. Kellogg Field in Battle Creek became home station for the 172 FS by order of then Governor Kim Siegler in 1947. This is the same year the United States Air Force became an independent branch of the armed forces and the 172 FS received federal recognition as an Air National Guard squadron. The 172 FS was federally activated in 1951 for the Korean War and redesignated as the 172nd Fighter Interceptor Squadron (FIS). The 172 FIS shifted its operational location to Selfridge AFB, MI where they flew their North American P/F-51D Mustangs in support of the Eastern Air Defense Force. The 172 FIS flew the P/F-51 until 1954. The 172nd, redesignated as a Fighter Bomber Squadron, transitioned into the North American F-86 Sabre Jet.
The unit flew this aircraft only until 1955 when they transitioned into the more sophisticated Northrop F-89 Scorpion. In 1956, the National Guard Bureau announced that the 172 FIS would become part of the newly created 110th Fighter Group . The 110 FG flew the F-89 Scorpion until 1958. In 1958 the 110th traded its Northrop F-89s for a new mission and a new aircraft, the Martin RB-57A Canberra and the reconnaissance mission. The 172nd, now designated as the 172nd Tactical Reconnaissance Squadron flew the RB-57A until 1971.
In 1971 the unit's mission changed again to forward air control (FAC) with the transition to the Cessna O-2 Skymaster which flew from Battle Creek until 1980 when the unit upgraded to the Cessna OA-37 Dragonfly. The dedicated FAC mission lasted until the 110th transitioned into the Fairchild A-10A Thunderbolt II in 1991. The A-10A's of the 110th have served with distinction in several United Nations operations in Europe and Southwest Asia and most recently with the 332nd Air Expeditionary Wing in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom.
The 110th Fighter Wing underwent a major transition moving from the A-10 aircraft to the C-21 aircraft in 2009. The C-21, which arrived in October 2008, is a twin turbofan engine passenger aircraft, the military version of the Lear Jet 35A. With a crew of two, it can accommodate eight passengers and 42 cubic feet of cargo. For aeromedical evacuations, it can carry one small litter or five ambulatory patients plus one flight nurse and two medical technicians. The aircraft first entered service in 1984, has a top speed of 530 mph, a range of 2,306 miles and a ceiling of 45,000 feet. The Air Force has an inventory of 35 C-21s with an additional 21 in the Air National Guard.
In addition, the base also witnessed the creation of a new unit, the 217th Air Operations Group (AOG), on April 1, 2009. The 217th AOG is a unique organizational structure to support the 17th Air Force (AFAFRICA). The 217 AOG has five squadrons that include air support, communications, intel, mobility, and operations in a largely self-contained package.
In 2010, the 110th Fighter Wing became the 110th Airlift Wing and then transitioned to the 110th Attack Wing in 2014.
ang: A Short Story
The Air National Guard as we know it today -- a separate reserve component of the United States Air Force -- was a product of the politics of postwar planning and interservice rivalry during World War II. The men who planned and maneuvered for an independent postwar Air Force during World War II didn't place much faith in the reserves, especially the state-dominated National Guard.
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United States Army Center of Military History
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Air Force Historical Foundation
110 Attack Wing
3545 Mustang Avenue
Battle Creek, MI 49037-5509
(269) 969-3234 or
DSN: 580-3234 or