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82d Fighter Group

Constituted as 82nd Pursuit Group (Interceptor) on 13 Jan 1942. Activated on 9 Feb 1942. Redesignated 82nd Fighter Group in May 1942. Trained with P-38's. Moved to Northern Ireland during Sep-Oct 1942 for further training. Moved to North Africa in Dec 1942 and served with Twelfth AF until Nov 1943. Took part in the defeat of Axis forces in Tunisia, the reduction of Pantelleria, the conquest of Sicily, and the invasion of Italy. Operated against the enemy's air transports; flew dive-bombing and strafing missions; escorted medium bombers in their attacks on enemy shipping and their raids on Naples and Rome; and gave direct support to the ground forces during the invasion of Italy. Received a DUC for a low-level strafing raid against enemy aircraft concentrations at Foggia on 25 Aug 1943.

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The 82nd received second DUC for performance on 2 September 1943 when the group protected a formation of bombers that encountered strong opposition from enemy interceptors during an attack on marshalling yards near Naples.

Moved to Italy in Oct 1943. Assigned to Fifteenth AF in Nov. Continued to function occasionally as a fighter-bomber organization, supporting Allied armies, flying interdictory missions, and attacking strategic targets. Received third DUC for performance on 10 Jun 1944 when the 82nd Group braved head-on attacks by hostile fighters to dive-bomb an oil refinery at Ploesti and then strafed targets of opportunity while returning to base. Engaged primarily in escort work, however, from Oct 1943 to May 1945, covering the operations of heavy bombers that attacked aircraft industries, oil refineries, and other targets in France, Germany, Czechoslovakia, Austria, Hungary, Yugoslavia, Rumania, and Bulgaria. Inactivated in Italy on 9 Sep 1945.

Activated in the US on 12 Apr 1947. Assigned to Strategic Air Command and equipped with P-51's. Assigned to Continental Air Command in Aug 1949. Inactivated on 2 Oct 1949.

Redesignated 82nd Fighter Group (Air Defense). Activated on 18 Aug 1955. Assigned to Air Defense Command and equipped with F-94 aircraft.

Squadrons. 95th: 1942-1945; 1947-1949. 96th: 1942-1945; 1947-1949; 1955-. 97th: 1942-1945; 1947-1949; 1955-.

Stations. Harding Field, La, 9 Feb 1942; Muroc, Calif, 30 Apr 1942; Los Angeles, Calif, May 1942; Glendale, Calif, c. 16 Aug-16 Sep 1942; Northern Ireland, Oct 1942; Telergma, Algeria, Jan 1943; Berteaux, Algeria, 28 Mar 1943; Souk-el-Arba, Algeria, 13 Jun 1943; Grombalia, Tunisia, 3 Aug 1943; San Pancrazio, Italy, c. 3 Oct 1943; Lecce, Italy, 10 Oct 1943; Vincenzo Airfield, Italy, 11 Jan 1944; Lesina, Italy, c. 30 Aug-Sep 1945. Grenier Field, NH, 12 Apr 1947-2 Oct 1949. New Castle County Aprt, Del, 18 Aug 1955-.

Commanders. 1st Lt Charles T Duke, Feb 1942; Col Robert Israel Jr, May 1942; Lt Col William E Covington Jr, 17 Jun 1942; Col John W Weltman, 4 May 1943; Lt Col Ernest C Young, 2 Aug 1943; Lt Col George M MacNicol, 26 Aug 1943; Col William P Litton, Jan 1944; Lt Col Ben A Mason Jr, 4 Aug 1944; Col Clarence T Edwinson, 28 Aug 1944; Col Richard A Legg, 22 Nov 1944; Col Joseph S Holtoner, 4 Jun 1945; Lt Col Robert M Wray, 16 Jul 1945-unkn. Maj Leland R Raphun, c. Apr 1947; Lt Col Gerald W Johnson, 2 Jun 1947; Col Henry Viccellio, 14 Jun 1947; Col William M Banks, 5 Nov 1948-c. Oct 1949. Col Clay D Albright Jr, 1955-.

Campaigns. Air Combat, EAME Theater; Air Offensive, Europe; Tunisia; Sicily; Naples-Foggia; Rome-Arno; Normandy; Northern France; Southern France; North Apennines; Rhineland; Central Europe; Po Valley.

Decorations. Distinguished Unit Citations: Italy, 25 Aug 1943; Italy, 2 Sep 1943; Ploesti, Rumania, 10 Jun 1944.

Insigne. Shield: Per bend or and azure a lightning bolt in bend throughout point to base, with two beviles, per bend argent, gules and or, between three fleurs-de-lis, two and one, of the second, and eleven stars in bend, six and five, of the first; over all in dexter chief a roundle per fess, wavy of two, sable and vert. Motto: Adorimini - "Up and at 'em!" (Approved 4 Nov 1957.)

Data from Air Force Combat Units of World War II By Maurer, Maurer, Published 1986



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