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Military site : airfield

Detailed history

In 1944, during World War II, the airport was used by the United States Army Air Forces Twelfth Air Force. On 31 July 1944, Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, the legendary French pilot, took off from this airport and disappeared, on a reconnaissance flight over France in a Lockheed P-38 Lightning.
USAAF combat units assigned:[clarification needed]
414th Night Fighter Squadron, (Twelfth Air Force), 5 February–July 1944; 5 September – 13 October 1944, Bristol Beaufighter
527th Fighter Squadron, 86th Fighter Group, (Twelfth Air Force), 12 July-23 September 1944, P-47 Thunderbolt
416th Night Fighter Squadron, (Twelfth Air Force), 14–23 August 1944, P-61 Black Widow
417th Night Fighter Squadron, (Twelfth Air Force), February–April 1944; 25 April – 7 September 1944, Bristol Beaufighter[3]
5th Photographic Reconnaissance Squadron, (3d Reconnaissance Group), 11 July – 24 September 1944, P-38/F-5 Lightning
23rd Photographic Reconnaissance Squadron, (3d Reconnaissance Group), 11 July – 24 September 1944, P-38/F-5 Lightning
111th Tactical Reconnaissance Squadron, (XII Tactical Air Command), 21 July – 27 August 1944, P-51/F-6 Mustang
42nd Bombardment Wing was headquartered at the airfield, 21 September – 24 November 1944.

English Heritage's record description

Not yet known



  • 86th Fighter Group

    86th Fighter Group

    The Group was constituted as 86th Bombardment Group (Light) on 13-Jan 1942, and activated on 10 Feb 1942. It was redesignated 86th Bombardment Group (Dive) in Sep 1942, 86th Fighter-Bomber Group in Aug 1943, and 86th Fighter Group in May 1944. ...

  • 47th Bomb Group


  • John Adair

    Military | Technical Sergeant (2nd Grade) | Gunner/Armament Inspector/Armament Cheif | 47th Bomb Group

  • Charles Barr

    Military | First Lieutenant | Pilot | 47th Bomb Group

  • Anthony Biancardi

    Military | Technical Sergeant (2nd Grade) | Communications Chief | 47th Bomb Group

  • Joseph Bitzko

    Military | First Lieutenant | Bombardier/Navigator | 47th Bomb Group

  • Viviano Bonitatibus

    Military | Sergeant (Technician Fourth Grade) | 47th Bomb Group

  • Eugene Brassfield

    Military | First Lieutenant | Pilot twin engine 1022 | 47th Bomb Group
    A-20G Havoc pilot 86th BS 47th BG Italy 1944-45. Post WWII attorney in Salem, Oregon Brother of US Navy fighter ace Arthur Brassfield

  • Robert Coale

    Military | Staff Sergeant (3rd Grade) | Aerial Gunner | 47th Bomb Group
    Assigned to 97BS, 47BG, 12AF USAAF. 60+ x combat missions. ETD Awards: AM (3OLC), GC, NSDM, WWII Victory, EAME (4 x battle stars), AF Longevity Service Award.

  • Gaston Coblentz

    Military | Major | Pilot | 47th Bomb Group
    Gaston Coblentz was a successful and well respected investment banker and writer after the war. ...

  • John Coma

    Military | Staff Sergeant (3rd Grade) | Radio Mechanic | 47th Bomb Group

  • Joseph Curreri

    Military | Sergeant | Air Crew Member - Airplane Mechanic | 93rd Bomb Group
    Inducted: 29 January 1942 - Camp Upton, New York ...

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Date Contributor Update
06 January 2021 23:47:49 466thHistorian Changes to known as, usaaf from date and history

Date Contributor Update
16 September 2020 17:30:07 curreri Created entry with name, latitude, longitude, usaaf from date, usaaf to date, person associations and aircraft associations

Daddy of Them All: Story of the 17th Bomb Group in WWII Paperback – 1 Jan. 1990
Paperback : 78 pages
ISBN-10 : 096059003X
ISBN-13 : 978-0960590032
Publisher : Boomerang Publishers (1 Jan. 1990)
Language: : English