441st Troop Carrier Wing
|441st Troop Carrier Wing|
Douglas C-47A-80-DL Serial 43-15135 of the 302d Troop Carrier Squadron
|Branch||United States Army Air Forces|
|Part of||Ninth Air Force|
|Garrison/HQ||European Theatre of World War II|
The 441st Troop Carrier Wing is an inactive United States Air Force Reserve organization. Its last assignment was to the 441st Troop Carrier Wing, stationed at Chicago-Orchard Airport, Illinois, on 14 March 1951.
During World War II, the group was a C-47 Skytrain transport unit assigned to Ninth Air Forces in Western Europe. The 441st TCG group flew combat paratroopers on airborne assaults on Normandy (Operation Overlord); Southern France (Operation Dragoon); Holland (Operation Market-Garden), and Germany (Operation Varsity). It also flew combat resupply missions in the relief of Bastogne in 1945.
World War II
Constituted as 441st Troop Carrier Group on 25 May 1943. Activated on 1 August 1943. Used C-47's to train for overseas duty. Moved to RAF Langar England, February–March 1944, and assigned to Ninth Air Force. The group was assigned to the 50th Troop Carrier Wing, IX Troop Carrier Command. It was scheduled to be assigned to Langar, however it only remained until 25 April until being moved to RAF Merryfield.
From Merryfield, the group participated in the D-Day operation, dropping 101st Airborne Division paratroops near Cherbourg, then carried out re-supply and glider delivery missions the following day. For its efficiency and achievements during these two days it was, like other troop carrier groups, awarded a Distinguished Unit Citation. During these missions, three C-47s and two CG-4A gliders were missing in action.
The group's aircraft flew supplies into Normandy as soon as suitable landing strips were available and evacuated casualties to Merryfield. On 17 July the air echelons of the 99th, 100th and 302nd Troop Carrier Squadrons new to Grosseto airbase in Italy to prepare for operations connected with the invasion of southern France returning to Merryfield on 24 August.
Meanwhile, the 301st TCS remained active on the Normandy shuttle while supplies were urgently needed for the advancing Allied armies, although operating from RAF Ramsbury from 7 August until the other squadrons returned.
Soon afterwards word was received that the 50th Troop Carrier Wing would move to France, the 441st being one of the first two groups, with headquarters leaving Merryfield on 6 September for its Advanced Landing Ground (ALG) at Villeneuve (ALG A-63).
From France the group dropped paratroops of 82nd and 101st Airborne Divisions near Nijmegen on 17 September during the air attack on Holland, and towed gliders with reinforcements on 18 and 23 September.
In December, the group transported ammunition, rations, medicine, and other supplies to troops of 101st Airborne Division surrounded by the enemy at Bastogne. Released gliders carrying troops of 17th Airborne Division near Wesel on 24 March 1945 when the Allies launched the airborne assault across the Rhine. Hauled gasoline to armored columns in Germany after the Allies crossed the Rhine.
Continually transported freight and personnel in the theater when not participating in airborne operations. Evacuated casualties and prisoners who had been liberated.
The 441st remained overseas after the war as part of United States Air Forces in Europe, performing occupation duty from Frankfurt Germany. It continued to transport personnel and equipment, using C-46, C-47, and C-109 aircraft.
The 441st Troop Carrier Group was inactivated at Frankfurt Germany on 30 September 1946.
The 441st Troop Carrier Wing (Medium) was reactivated as a reserve unit in May 1949. Assigned C-46 Commando aircraft, the wing was inactivated in March 1951 when its equipment and personnel were transferred to active duty units during the Korean War.
- Constituted as 441st Troop Carrier Group on 25 May 1943
- Activated on 1 August 1943
- Inactivated on 30 September 1946
- Established as 441st Troop Carrier Wing, Medium, on 10 May 1949
- Activated in the Reserve on 27 June 1949
- Ordered into active service on 10 March 1951
- Inactivated on 14 March 1951
- 61 Troop Carrier Wing, 1 August 1943
- I Troop Carrier Command, 18 January 1944
- 50th Troop Carrier Wing, 17 March 1944
- IX Air Force Service Command, 18 May 1945
- Attached to Supreme Headquarters, Allied Expeditionary Forces, 20 May – 10 August 1945
- 302 Transport Wing, 11 August 1945
- 51 Troop Carrier Wing (known in ETO as European Air Transport Service [Provisional]), 1 October 1945 – 30 September 1946
- Tenth Air Force, 27 June 1949 – 14 March 1951
- 441st Troop Carrier Group, 27 June 1949 – 14 March 1951
- 99th Troop Carrier Squadron (3J), 1 August 1943 – 27 March 1946
- 100th Troop Carrier Squadron (8C), 1 August 1943 – 15 February 1946
- 301st Troop Carrier Squadron (Z4), 1 August 1943 – 18 May 1945
- 302d Troop Carrier Squadron (2L), 1 August 1943 – 15 May 1945
- Freeman, Roger A. (1994) UK Airfields of the Ninth: Then and Now 1994. After the Battle ISBN 0-900913-80-0
- Freeman, Roger A. (1996) The Ninth Air Force in Colour: UK and the Continent-World War Two. After the Battle ISBN 1-85409-272-3
- Maurer, Maurer (1983). Air Force Combat Units Of World War II. Maxwell AFB, Alabama: Office of Air Force History. ISBN 0-89201-092-4
- Ravenstein, Charles A. (1984). Air Force Combat Wings Lineage and Honors Histories 1947–1977. Maxwell AFB, Alabama: Office of Air Force History. ISBN 0-912799-12-9.
- Johnson, David C. (1988), U.S. Army Air Forces Continental Airfields (ETO), D-Day to V-E Day; Research Division, USAF Historical Research Center, Maxwell AFB, Alabama.