Catania Airport's history dates back to 1924, when it was the region's first airport. During World War II it was seized by the Allies during the Sicily Campaign and used by the United States Army Air Forces as a military airfield. Twelfth Air Force used the airport as a combat airfield, stationing the 340th Bombardment Group, which flew B-25 Mitchells from 27 August to 19 November 1943. In addition, the HQ, 51st Troop Carrier Wing used the airport from 29 September 1943 to 29 June 1944. Various transport units used the airport for the rest of the war, afterward it was turned back over to civil authorities.
By the late 1940s, it was clear that the airport was fast running out of space and it was deemed necessary to relocate and in 1950, the new bigger and improved Catania Airport opened for business.
After 20 years of unexpected growth and high passengers levels, in 1981 it was once again necessary to restructure the airport to cope with demand
English Heritage's record description
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Activated on 20 August 1942. The 340th. Bombardment Group trained with B-25's for duty overseas. They arrived in the Mediterranean theater in March 1943. Assigned first to the Ninth Air Force and later (in August 1943) to the Twelfth. Served in combat...