495th Fighter Group

495th Figher Group

495th Figher Group


The 495th Fighter Training Group was established on October 9, 1943 and activated October 26, 1943 at RAF Atcham, England to provide forward training on tactics and operations for the European Theater during World War II. The group exercised command over the 551st and 552nd Fighter Training Squadrons flying the P-47 Thunderbolt and P-38 Lightning preparing pilots for action with Eighth and Ninth Air Forces. It moved to RAF Whitchurch, England, in February of 1945, and at the conclusion of hostilities was disbanded April 15, 1945.

In 2008, Air Force leadership recognized that the changing force structure demanded creative ways to generate experienced fighter pilots. The solution was to capitalize on the experience and assets of the Guard and Reserve. This Total Force Integration (TFI) initiative became Active Association, whereby Regular Air Force personnel work side-by-side with host Air Reserve and Air National Guard Component units in a mutually beneficial relationship.

The 495th Fighter Group was reactivated March 8, 2013, at Shaw Air Force Base, SC, as an active association between active-duty pilots and their guard and reserve counterparts and marked a historical moment in the Air Force's ongoing initiative to integrate active-duty Airmen, Air Force Reserve Command (AFRC) and Air National Guard (ANG) units to streamline training, spending and resource use. As a direct reporting unit to 9th Air Force, the 495FG is made up of more than 600 active-duty personnel across 22 ARC and ANG Fighter Wings under Air Combat Command assigned to the following units:

315FS assigned to the 158FW (VANG), Burlington International Airport, VT.

316FS assigned to the 169FW (SCANG), McEntire Joint National Guard Base, SC.

355FS assigned to the 301FW (AFRC), Naval Air Station Fort Worth Joint
Reserve Base, TX.

358FS assigned to the 442FW (AFRC), Whiteman Air Force Base, MO.

367FS assigned to the 482FW (AFRC), Homestead Air Reserve Base, FL.

377FS assigned to the 187FW (AANG), Montgomery Regional Airport, AL.

378FS assigned to the 115FW (WANG), Truax Field Air National Guard Base, WI. 

Total Force Integration is a vital enterprise aimed at maximizing the combined contributions of the Active and Reserve components, while ensuring "right-sizing" of component mix. The 495th Fighter Group will continue to lead active associate units into the future of Air Force pilot training and the partnerships will allow active-duty, Air National Guard and Air Reserve Component fighter units to share resources, reduce duplications of effort, and ultimately, increase the Air Force's overall air defense capabilities in order to enhance the ability to provide dominant combat airpower for America.

Lineage:

Established as the 495h Fighter Training Group October 9, 1943 Activated
October 26, 1943 Disbanded on April 15, 1945

Assignments:

VIII Fighter Command, October 26, 1943

VIII Air Force Composite Command, February 14, 1944 VIII Fighter Command,
October 1, 1944

1 Bomb Division, November 29, 1944 to April 15, 1945

Operational Components:

551st Fighter Training Squadron, October 26, 1943 to April 15, 1945 552nd
Fighter Training Squadron, October 26, 1943 to April 15, 1945

Stations:

RAF Atcham, England, October 26, 1943

RAF Whitchurch, England, February 3, 1945 to April 15, 1945

Service Streamers:

World War II: European, African, Middle Eastern Theater