319TH AIR REFUELING WING
The 319th Air Refueling
Wing began as the 319th Bombardment Group (Medium) during
On June 19, 1942, the group began training in B-26 Bombers and after completing initial training in November 1942, the group reported to the Mediterranean theater of operations where it was assigned to the 12th Air Force.
The 319th Bomb Group started combat operations upon arrival by participating in attacks on enemy airdromes, harbors, rail facilities and other targets in Tunisia until February 1943. The group then reorganized, retrained and resumed combat operations later that year. It participated in the reduction of Pantelleria and the campaign for Sicily. The group then turned toward Italy and supported Allied Forces at Salerno, Anzio and Monte Cassino.
The 319th Bomb Group received two Distinguished Unit Citations during the war. The first was awarded for pinpoint bombing of the Roman railroad yards March 3, 1944. The second was for bombing the railroad yard at Florence March 11, 1944. During both missions, the group carefully avoided harming religious and cultural monuments.
The group continued support of the Allied offensive in Italy. During the invasion of southern France in 1944, the Bomb Group won the French Croix de Guerre with Palm. It also supported Tito's guerrilla forces in Yugoslavia before returning to the United States in January 1945.
In the United States, the group trained with A-26 attack bombers before returning overseas, this time to Okinawa, Japan. There, the group was assigned to the 7th Air Force, until they returned to the United States in November 1945.
The group was inactivated December 18, 1945. Redesignated the 319th Fighter-Bomber Wing, from 1946 to 1962, it served as part of the Air Force reserves.
On February 1, 1963, the 319th Bombardment Wing (Heavy) was activated at Grand Forks AFB, replacing the 4133rd Strategic Wing. The wing had two tactical squadrons: the 905th Aerial Refueling Squadron and the 46th Bombardment Squadron. The wing was equipped with the KC-135A Stratotanker and the B-52H Stratofortress and under the command of the Strategic Air Command, headquartered at Offutt AFB, Neb.
The wing was placed under 2nd Air Force in July 1963 and under the command of the 4th Strategic Aerospace Division here September 1, 1963. The base was placed under 15th Air Force in April 1970 and under the 47th Air Division in February 1975.
In 1980, the wing was part of the Strategic Projection Force commitment under the Rapid Deployment Task Force. This commitment was developed for rapid response during national emergencies requiring only conventional armament.
In 1982, the wing experienced two major changes -- realignment under the
4th Air Division and conversion to the B-52G and the air-launched cruise missile. The 319th was operational-ready
with the ALCM in 1984.
On December 4, 1986, the last remaining B-52 left as the base began preparations to receive the new B-1B Lancer and the newly re-engined KC-135R tanker. This made the 319th the only wing in SAC to ever undergo simultaneous conversions of two major weapon systems. In the fall of 1987, the wing received the new B-1Bs and KC-135Rs as part of SAC's strategic modernization. In October 1988, the wing placed a Lancer on alert for the first time here. The base was realigned once more in 1989 to place the wing under the command of the 42nd Air Division and 8th Air Force.
In July 1991, the Strategic Air Command again made significant organizational
changes at Grand Forks. It
inactivated the 42nd Air Division on July 9, 1991, appointing the 319th
Bombardment Wing as the host unit.
In line with changes in the world order, President George Bush reduced the size of the alert nuclear force. On September 28, 1991, the 319th stood down its B-1B bombers and KC-135 tankers from quick reaction alert, ending nearly three decades of such duty at Grand Forks AFB. Shortly afterwards, the 319th Wing acquired its second mission of conventional bombardment operations.
On June 1, 1992, the Air Force inactivated Strategic Air Command and the 319th and Grand Forks Air Force Base were reassigned to the newly established Air Combat Command. At the same time, the wing's 905th Air Refueling Squadron was assigned to the 305th Air Refueling Wing at Grissom Air Force Base, Indiana, although aircraft and personnel physically remained at Grand Forks. Still remaining at Grand Forks, the 905th was once again reassigned to the 43rd Air Refueling Wing, Malmstrom Air Force Base, Montana, on July 1, 1993.
In February 1993, Air Combat Command dropped the 319th Bomb Wing's nuclear mission and gave the wing the primary mission of conventional bombing operations. The wing began planning and training to support such missions to counter regional threats worldwide.
Looking toward the future, the Air Force continued its restructure. On October 1, 1993, the 319th Air Refueling Wing activated as the first of three core air refueling wings in Air Mobility Command. The 319th Bomb Wing was redesignated the 319th Bomb Group. The 905th Air Refueling Squadron, was assigned to the new air refueling wing and was soon joined by the 906th, 911th and 912th air refueling squadrons. These changes reflected a change in the mission focus from bombardment to air refueling operations. The last Air Combat Command B-1B departed Grand Forks Air Force Base and the 319th Bomb Group inactivated on May 26, 1994.
With its complement of 48 KC-135 Stratotankers, the 319th Air Refueling Wing guarantees "Global Reach" through air refueling and airlift. Wing squadrons actively support Air Force operations and humanitarian relief efforts worldwide.
A BRIEF HISTORY OF THE 319TH AIR REFUELING WING 1942-99
In 1999, the 319th Air Refueling Wing continued to support US defense policy by flying KC-135R air-to-air refueling missions in support of the Air Force's "Global Reach, Global Power" mission.
The 319th Air Refueling Wing has a long, proud history. In addition to the KC-135 Stratotanker, it has flown various types of bombers from the B-26 Marauder to the B-1B Lancer.
During the Second World War, the 319th flew 515 combat missions in 12 campaigns in North Africa, the Mediterranean, southern Europe, and the Far East. In doing so, the wing fought all three Axis powers. Moreover, it supported USAF combat efforts by providing B-52 and KC-135 aircrews during the war in Southeast Asia, as well as providing KC-135 aircraft and aircrews during the Persian Gulf War.
Even more recently, the wing proved itself again by providing invaluable air-to-air refueling during Operation ALLIED FORCE. For its combat achievements, the 319th Air Refueling Wing has received two distinguished unit citations and the French Croix-de-Guerre with Palm.
Its history began when the US Army Air Forces constituted the 319th Bombardment Group (Medium) on 19 June 1942. One week later, on 26 June, the Army Air Forces activated the group at Barksdale Field, Louisiana. In July, the 319th began training with its newly acquired Martin B-26 Marauders. Shortly afterwards the group moved to Harding Field, Louisiana. In late August, the group began its move overseas.
The Army Air Forces planned for the 319th Bomb Group to deploy to England to acquire some combat experience before moving on to North Africa as part of the Twelfth Air Force. The group's advance and ground echelons setup operations at RAF Shipdham and RAF Horsham St Faith, England, during September and October, but the air echelon had difficulties ferrying the B-26s across the Atlantic in time to meet up with its ground echelon before they deployed to North Africa.
On 8 November 1942, members of the 319th Bomb Group went ashore during the Allied invasion of North Africa. The 319th setup camp at Tafaraoui Airdrome, Algeria, on 18 November. Shortly afterwards, its air echelon arrived in North Africa with a mere 12 B-26s. The group moved to Maison Blanche, Algeria, the following day.
On 28 November, the 319th flew its first combat mission, bombing Sfax harbor in Tunisia. For the next few weeks, the 319th concentrated on striking airdromes, marshaling yards, railroad bridges, shipping, and harbor installations in Tunisia.
The 319th Bomb Group moved to Telergma, Algeria, on 14 December 1942. From there, the unit concentrated on attacking the shipping lanes between Sicily and North Africa to slow down the Axis movement of reinforcements and supplies to North Africa. But, on 27 February 1943, the Twelfth Air Force transferred the 319th's few remaining B-26s to other units, moving the group to Oujda, French Morocco, for reorganization.
Built up to combat strength, the 319th Bomb Group returned to action in June 1943. The group, stationed at Sedrata, Algeria, flew missions against Pantelleria and Sardinia besides striking enemy shipping.
On 26 June, the 319th moved to Djedeida, Tunisia, from where it flew numerous strikes against airdromes, roads, marshaling yards, communications lines, and docks on Sicily and mainland Italy.
The 319th Bomb Group moved from North Africa to Decimomannu, Sardinia, and became part of the Fifteenth Air Force on 1 November 1943. From this location the group flew many bombing missions against targets in central Italy and southern France.
After being reassigned to the Twelfth Air Force in January 1944, the 319th Bomb Group continued striking such targets as marshaling yards and bridges. However, the bomb group began flying more close support missions to assist the Allied advance in Italy. It flew missions against enemy targets near the Allied beachhead at Anzio as well as bombing the monastery of Monte Cassino. Before long, the German-held marshaling yards in Rome had become significantly important for supporting the Anzio and Cassino Fronts.
The 319th earned its first distinguished unit citation for its effective bombing of the Ostienne rail facilities in Rome on 3 March. Eight days later, on 11 March, the group earned a second distinguished unit citation for its excellent bombing accuracy while striking the main marshaling yards of Florence.
On 17 September 1944, the 319th Bomb Group began strategic bombing against targets in the Italian Po Valley. However, the Twelfth Air Force had to move the group closer to the target area because of limited range of the Marauder.
The 319th transferred to Serragia, Corsica, on 21 September. Bombing raids concentrated on railroad bridges in the Po Valley. The group flew its last B-26 Marauder mission on 31 October. It had flown 9,050 sorties on 417 missions, dropping over 12,600 tons of bombs, with the Marauder.
In late 1944, the 319th Bomb Group converted to North American B-25 Mitchell bombers. The group flew its first B-25 mission against railroad bridges in the Po Valley on 4 November. During the next two months the group flew 1,463 sorties on 76 missions, dropping 2,111 tons of munitions on railroad bridges, communications lines, and industrial sites in northern Italy and Yugoslavia.
The 319th received orders to halt combat operations in Europe and prepare for redeployment to the Pacific on 31 December 1944.
On 2 February 1945, the US Army Air Forces redesignated the unit as the 319th Bombardment Group (Light). It was equipped with Douglas A-26 Invaders at Columbia Army Air Base, South Carolina, in March, and shipped out to the Pacific in April 1945. The 319th Bomb Group established camp at Kadena on the Japanese Island of Okinawa in early July 1945.
On 16 July, the group flew its first A-26 mission, bombing Miyazaki Airdrome on the East Coast of Kyushu, the southernmost part of mainland Japan. Four days later, on 20 July, the unit moved to Machinato Airdrome, Okinawa.
During the next few weeks the 319th flew 698 sorties on 22 missions, delivering 742 tons of bombs on Japanese targets at Shanghai, the Ryukyu Islands, Kyushu, Chusan, and Nagasaki. After the Japanese surrendered, the 319th returned to the United States where it inactivated on 18 December 1945.
On 27 December 1946, the US Army Air Forces activated the 319th Bomb Group as a reserve unit at Mitchell Field, New York. The US Air Force transferred the unit to Reading Municipal Airport, Pennsylvania, on 27 June 1949.
The US Air Force established the 319th Bombardment Wing (Light) on 10 May 1949. It activated the 319th Bomb Wing in the reserve at Reading Municipal Airport on 27 June 1949. The 319th Bomb Group became part of the 319th Bomb Wing at that time. However, the wing was inactivated on 2 September.
Just over a month later, on 10 October 1949, the Air Force activated the 319th Bomb Wing, equipped with A-26 Invaders, as a reserve unit at Birmingham Municipal Airport, Alabama. The USAF ordered the wing to active service during the Korean War, but inactivated it less than three weeks later, having transferred its personnel and aircraft to other units.
On 18 May 1955, the US Air Force activated the newly redesignated 319th Fighter-Bombardment Wing at Memphis Municipal Airport, Tennessee, as part of the reserves. Assigned to the Aerospace Defense Command, the 319th flew Republic F-84 Thunderjets before converting to North American F-8B Sabres in 1957. The Air Force inactivated the wing on 16 November 1957.
The US Air Force activated the newly redesignated 319th Bombardment Wing (Heavy) at Grand Forks AFB, North Dakota, on 15 November 1962.
A few months later, on 1 February 1963, the Strategic Air Command organized the 319th Bomb Wing with the personnel and aircraft previously assigned to the 4133d Strategic Wing. The 319th assumed the mission of training for Emergency War Order operations and standing alert with Boeing B-52H Stratofortress and Boeing KC-135A Stratotanker aircraft.
In the 1969 Strategic Air Command Bombing and Navigation Competition the 319th Bomb Wing took first place and won the Fairchild Trophy. Moreover, the wing won the Holloway, Best Unit Bombing, Best Crew Bombing and Navigation, and Best Unit Bombing and Navigation (Single Mission) awards.
The following year the wing took first place in the British Royal Air Force Bombing and Navigation Competition, receiving the Blue Steel Trophy.
During the war in Southeast Asia, the 319th Bomb Wing's mission expanded to include sending bomber and tanker aircrews on temporary duty assignments to support B-52 and KC-135 operations from 1963 to 1974. Tanker crews participated in refueling operations for both bombers and fighters. The bomb crews flew B-52Ds from bases in Guam, Okinawa, and Thailand. Bomber crews participated in Operation ARC LIGHT in 1968 and Operations LINEBACKER I and II in 1972.
In 1973, the 319th Bomb Wing acquired the Short Range Attack Missile (SRAM), replacing the older "Hound Dog" air-to-ground missile aboard its B-52Hs. As the activities in Southeast Asia decreased, the 319th Bomb Wing focused its full efforts on training crews to fly strategic strike missions.
The wing continued its record of outstanding performance, being selected as the best unit in Fifteenth Air Force and Strategic Air Command and receiving the Riverside and Omaha Trophies in 1978. The wing also earned the Dougharty SRAM Trophy during the SAC Bombing and Navigation Competition in 1978, Mathis Trophy in 1980, and Bartsch Trophy in 1962. In addition, the 319th Bomb Wing received an Air Force Outstanding Unit Award for its performance during 1977 to 1979.
The Strategic Air Command broadened the 319th Bomb Wing's mission by making it the cornerstone of the newly formed Strategic Projection Force in 1980. SAC developed the Strategic Projection Force for use as a quick response conventional force during national emergencies. The unit had the mission of providing massive firepower anywhere in the world on very short notice.
In a demonstration of this capability, the 319th flew four B-52H bombers on a 31-hour mission to deliver conventional bombs on a simulated runway target in Egypt during Exercise Bright Star in 1981. Excellent navigation and precision bombing made the 15,000 mile flight, the longest non-stop B-52 bombing mission in SAC history, a complete success.
After flying B-52H bombers for 20 years, the 319th Bomb Wing changed to B-52G bombers in 1963. The unit also became operationally ready with the Air Launched Cruise Missile (ALCM) in 1984.
During 1985, a 319th Bomb Wing B-52G, in a test called Global Cruise, launched an ALCM over northern Canada. The missile made a perfect simulated strike on its target, marking the first time SAC had launched a missile over foreign territory.
In 1986, the 319th flew the first triple weapons drop ever by a SAC bomber when it delivered an inert ALCM, SRAM, and gravity weapon during a Global Shield exercise. During further SAC Bombing and Navigation Competitions, the 319th Bomb Wing earned the Dougherty SRAM and Davis Trophies in 1985 and Bartsch ECM Trophy in 1986.
In 1987, the 319th Bomb Wing converted to the Rockwell B-1B Lancer and Boeing KC-135R Stratotanker.
The first B-1B landed at Grand Forks AFB on 19 September 1987. The wing put its first Lancer on alert on 1 October 1988.
In 1989, it deployed B-1Bs and KC-135Rs to Mountain Home AFB, Idaho, during Exercise Mighty Warrior to demonstrate the wing's capability in flying from a forward operating location. Moreover, the wing flew KC-135R missions in support of US forces during the invasion of Panama during Operation JUST CAUSE in December 1989.
The 319th's tankers also provided air-to-air refueling during the deployment of US forces to the Middle East during Operation DESERT SHIELD, followed by supporting Allied aircraft in the Middle East during Operation DESERT STORM in 1991.
After the Persian Gulf War, the US Air Force began to make a series of changes reflecting plans for a smaller, more efficient Air Force for the future as a direct result of the end of the Cold War as well as from lessons learned during Operation DESERT STORM. In its organizational restructuring of the Strategic Air Command, the Air Force inactivated the 42d Air Division and reassigned the 319th Bomb Wing directly to the Eighth Air Force on 9 July 1991.
The bomb wing became the host unit at Grand Forks, resulting in a significant growth in assigned units and personnel. The wing acquired four new groups, the 319th Operations, Logistics, Support, and Medical Groups, to manage and support B-1B and KC-135R aircraft operations in addition to supporting the 321st Missile Wing.
To reflect the fact that it was a composite unit, the 319th Bomb Wing was redesignated as the 319th Wing on 1 September 1991.
In line with the changing international situation, President George Bush decided to reduce the US nuclear alert force. Thus, on 28 September 1991, the 319th Wing pulled its B-1B bombers and KC-135R tankers from quick reaction alert duty, ending nearly three decades of such activity at Grand Forks AFB.
Shortly afterwards, the 319th Wing acquired the secondary mission of training for conventional bombing operations. With the inactivation of the Strategic Air Command, the 319th was reassigned to the newly established Air Combat Command on 1 June 1992.
At the same time, the wing's 905th Air Refueling Squadron and its KC-135R tankers were reassigned to the 305th Air Refueling Wing at Grissom Air Force Base, Indiana, despite the fact that they remained physically stationed at Grand Forks AFB.
Still remaining at Grand Forks, the 905th was reassigned to the 43d Air Refueling Wing, Malmstrom AFB, Montana, on 1 July 1993.
In February 1993, the Air Combat Command dropped the 319th Bomb Wing's primary nuclear mission and gave the wing the primary mission of B-1B conventional bombardment operations. The wing began planning and training to support such a mission to counter worldwide regional threats.
Looking to the future, the US Air Force continued its worldwide restructuring process. The Air Force planned to restructure Grand Forks AFB into one of three major KC-135 tanker bases in 1994. Thus, on 1 October 1993, the USAF redesignated the 319th Bomb Wing as the 319th Air Refueling Wing and reassigned it to the Air Mobility Command.
At the same time, the wing reacquired the 905th Air Refueling Squadron and KC-135R tankers while turning over its B-1Bs to the newly activated 319th Bomb Group, an Air Combat Command unit. With these actions the 319th Air Refueling Wing's mission changed from conventional bombardment to air refueling and airlift operations.
To further enlarge the capabilities of the wing, the Air Mobility Command transferred the 906th Air Refueling Squadron from Minot AFB, North Dakota, to the 319th Air Refueling Wing on 1 February 1994. The command also assigned the 911th and 912th Air Refueling Squadrons to the wing in April 1994.
With these resources, the 319th Air Refueling Wing deployed KC-135Rs to support tanker activities in Operation PROVIDE COMFORT in Turkey, Operation SOUTHERN WATCH in Saudi Arabia, Operation DENY FLIGHT in Italy, Operation UPHOLD DEMOCRACY in Haiti, Operation VIGILANT WARRIOR in Saudi Arabia, and Operation CONSTANT VIGIL in Panama.
The wing received its second Air Force Outstanding Unit Award for its conversion to an air refueling unit and operational performance during 1993 to 1995. With its air-to-air refueling capability, the 319 ARW continued its vital role in the Air Force's "Global Reach, Global Power" mission.
1996 started with the men, women, and tankers of the 319 ARW deploying in support of Operation JOINT ENDEAVOR.
The deployments continued as the 319th Services Squadron deployed to Guantanamo Bay, Cuba where they supported Operation SEA SIGNAL, providing humanitarian assistance for Haitian immigrants fleeing political strife in their country.
The wing didn't stop there. In March1996, members of the 319 ARW deployed to Istres, France in support of Operation DECISIVE ENDEAVOR in order to monitor flying in the airspace over Bosnia - Herzegovina.
The second half of 1996 was just as busy as the first with deployments to Qatar as part of the Joint Task Force Southwest Asia, Riyadh Air Force Base, Saudi Arabia supporting the enforcement of the Iraqi no-fly zone, and Rwanda for humanitarian efforts.
As if real world deployments weren't enough, the wing participated in several operational readiness exercises in preparation for an AMC operational readiness inspection.
In May 1996, the 319 ARW deployed for both an AMC operational readiness inspection as well as a large joint exercise testing the capabilities of 53,000 American and British service members.
When the AMC Inspector General briefed the wing on the results of their ORI the men and women of the 319th were ecstatic. The wing received an Outstanding rating for their performance during the inspection, becoming the first Super Core Tanker wing to perform such a task.
Numerous deployment taskings continued throughout 1997. The wing deployed to England to support the European Tanker Task Force, Saudi Arabia to support the Southwest Asia Tanker Task Force, Panama to support Operation CONSTANT VIGIL, and Turkey in support of Operation NORTHERN WATCH.
The most memorable event during 1997 for the wing, however, was weather related. The 1996-97 winter was particularly harsh even by North Dakota standards. Record numbers of blizzards dumped record amounts of snow on Grand Forks Air Force Base and the surrounding communities culminating in the spring with the worst flood in recorded history for the region. 319 ARW members were instrumental in protecting the city from rising waters and sheltering victims when the rising river finally dominated.
The spring of 1997 also brought a structural change to the wing as it was realigned under the 15th Air Force. A few months later, in July, the wing received its third Outstanding Unit Award for its deployment efforts, the performance during the 1996 Operational Readiness Inspection, and its response to the devastating flood.
The wing experienced a change within its airframe during 1998. In June the 319 ARW accepted its first Pacer CRAG (Compass, Radar, and Global Positioning System) modified aircraft. Pacer CRAG upgrades were the most significant cockpit upgrades for KC-135s in a decade.
In 1998 the 321st Missile Group inactivated, ending more than twenty years of joint service between the 319th and 321st. Two major deployments occurred towards the end of 1998 as the 319 ARW deployed to the Persian Gulf to support a force build up in response to Iraqi aggression and to various sites in Europe in support of NATO forces in Kosovo to defend against Serbian aggression.
The deployments to the Persian Gulf and Europe in support of Operations DESERT FOX and ALLIED FORCE, respectively, continued for the 319th Air Refueling Wing in 1999.
CHRONOLOGY OF MAJOR EVENTS
319TH AIR REFUELING WING 1942 - 1999
26 Jun 1942-The US Army Air Forces activated the 319th Bombardment Group (Medium) at Barksdale Field, Louisiana.
12 Sep 1942-The 319th Bomb Group, equipped with B-26 Marauders, was posted in England under the Eighth Air Force.
11 Nov 1942-The group transferred to Algeria to fly B-26 missions for the Twelfth Air Force. It later operated from Morocco, Tunisia, Sardinia, Corsica, and Italy against the Axis powers.
3 Mar 1944-The 319th Bomb Group earned a Distinguished Unit Citation for its role in a bombing mission on Rome, Italy.
11 Mar 1944-The group earned a second Distinguished Unit Citation for bombing effectiveness on Florence, Italy.
Nov 1944-The 319th Bomb Group converted to B-25 Mitchell bombers.
25 Jan 1945-The 319th Bomb Group returned to the United States.
2 Feb 1945-The US Army Air Force redesignated the unit as the 319th Bombardment Group (Light).
2 Jul 1945-Transferred to Okinawa, the group flew A-26 Invader bombing mission against Japanese targets.
18 Dec 1945-The 319th Bomb Group was inactivated at Fort Lewis, Washington.
27 Dec 1946-The 319th Bombardment Group (Light) was activated as part of the Air Force Reserve at Mitchell Field, New York.
27 Jun 1949-The 319th Bombardment Wing (Light) was activated as part of the Air Force Reserve at Reading Municipal Airport, Pennsylvania.
2 Sep 1949-The Air Force Reserve inactivated the 319th Bomb Wing.
10 Oct 1949-The 319th Bomb Wing was activated as part of the Reserve at Birmingham Municipal Airport, Alabama. It was equipped with A-26 Invaders.
10 Mar 1951-The Air Force ordered the 319th Bomb Wing to active service at Birmingham Municipal Airport.
28 Mar 1951- The USAF inactivated the 319th Bomb Wing.
18 May 1955-The Air Force activated the 319th Fighter-Bomber Wing, equipped with F-84 Thunderjets, as part of the Air Force Reserve at Memphis Municipal Airport, Tennessee.
16 Nov 1957-The 319th Fighter-Bomber Wing was inactivated.
15 Nov 1962- The USAF activated the 319th Bombardment Wing (Heavy) at Grand Forks Air Force Base, North Dakota.
1 Feb 1963-The 319th Bomb Wing was organized at Grand Forks AFB. The wing's two operational squadrons--the 46th Bomb Squadron and 905th Air Refueling Squadron--were equipped with B-52H bombers and KC-135A tankers. The wing placed aircraft on peacetime quick reaction alert duty.
1969-The wing captured five bombing awards, including the Fairchild Best Overall Bomb Unit Trophy, at the SAC Proud Shield Bomb Competition.
1978-The 319th Bomb Wing received the Strategic Air Command's Omaha "Best Wing" Trophy.
1979-The 319th Bomb Wing received an Air Force Outstanding Unit Award for its performance of duty from 1 Jul 1977 to 20 Jun 1979.
1981-The wing flew four B-52H bombers on a 31-hour, 15,000-mile flight from Grand Forks AFB to deliver conventional bombs on a simulated runway target in Egypt during Exercise Bright Star 81.
1983-The 319th Bomb Wing changed from B-52H to B-52G bombers.
1987-The wing changed from B-52G and KC-135A aircraft to B-1B Lancers and KC-135R Stratotankers.
Dec 1989-The wing flew KC-135R air-to-air refueling missions during Operation JUST CAUSE in Panama.
Aug 1990 - Jan 1991-The 319th Bomb Wing flew KC-135R tanker missions in support of Operation DESERT SHIELD.
Jan 1991 - Feb 1991-The wing flew KC-135R missions in support of Operation DESERT STORM.
9 Jul 1991-The 319th Bomb Wing became the host unit at Grand Forks AFB.
1 Sep 1991-The Strategic Air Command redesignated the unit as the 319th Wing.
28 Sep 1991-The 319th Wing stood down its peacetime quick reaction strike force.
28 - 29 Feb 1992-The 319th Wing broke 11 time-to-climb world records with the B-1B bomber.
18 Mar 1992-The wing broke an additional time-to-climb world record with the B-1B bomber, giving the unit ownership to a total of 12 world records.
1 Jun 1992-The Air Force redesignated the 319th Wing as the 319th Bomb Wing. The 905th Air Refueling Squadron was reassigned to the 305th Operations Group at Grissom AFB, Indiana. The 319th Bomb Wing was reassigned to the newly activated Air Combat Command.
1 Feb 1993-The Air Combat Command changed the 319th Bomb Wing's primary mission to conventional bombardment operations.
1 Oct 1993-The Air Force redesignated the 319th Bomb Wing as the 319th Air Refueling Wing. The wing was reassigned from the Air Combat Command to the Air Mobility Command. It also reacquired the 905th Air Refueling Squadron and its KC-135R tankers while turning over its B-1B bombers to the newly activated 319th Bomb Group, an Air Combat Command organization.
1 Feb 1994-The Air Mobility Command transferred the 906th Air Refueling Squadron from Minot AFB, North Dakota, to the 319th Air Refueling Wing.
Jan - Apr 1994-The 905th Air Refueling Squadron deployed to Pisa, Italy, to support Operation DENY FLIGHT, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization's effort to enforce a no-fly zone over Bosnia-Herzegovina.
1 Apr 1994-The command assigned the 912th Air Refueling Squadron to the 319th Air Refueling Wing.
29 Apr 1994-The 911th Air Refueling Squadron was assigned to the 319th Air Refueling Wing, giving the wing four tanker squadrons.
Jul - Sep 1994-The 906th Air Refueling Squadron deployed to Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, to support Operation SOUTHERN WATCH, the United Nations coalition forces enforcement of a no-fly zone over southern Iraq.
Sep - Nov 1994-The 905th deployed to Riyadh to support Operation SOUTHERN WATCH.
Sep 1994-The 319th Air Refueling Wing supported Operation UPHOLD DEMOCRACY, the restoration of democracy to Haiti.
Oct 1994-The wing supported Operation VIGILANT WARRIOR, the deployment of additional US forces to Southwest Asia to deter an Iraqi invasion of Kuwait.
Nov - Dec 1994-The 906th deployed to Pisa, Italy and Istres Air Base, France to support Operation DENY FLIGHT.
Jan 1995-Aircrews and tankers from the 905th Air Refueling Squadron deployed to Pisa, Italy, and Istres AB, France, to support Operation DENY FLIGHT.
Jan - Feb 1995-The 911th Air Refueling Squadron supported Operation SOUTHERN WATCH while deployed to Riyadh AB, Saudi Arabia.
Jan - Apr 1995-The 906th supported Operation CONSTANT VIGIL, an anti-drug trafficking operation, from Tucumen International Airport in Panama City, Panama.
Feb - Apr 1995-Aircrews and tankers from the 912th Air Refueling Squadron deployed to Riyadh to support Operation SOUTHERN WATCH.
1995-The 319TH Air Refueling Wing received its second Air Force Outstanding Unit Award for its performance of duty from 1 Oct 1993 to 30 Jun 1995.
Jan 1995-Members of the 319th Air Refueling Wing deployed in support of Operation JOINT ENDEAVOR
Jan 1995-Members of the 319th Services Squadron deployed to Guantanamo Bay, Cuba in support of Operation SEA SIGNAL, providing humanitarian assistance to Haitian refugees.
1 Mar 1996-The 319 ARW Comptroller Squadron activated.
22 Mar 1996-Grand Forks AFB won the State Waste Education and Recycling Award, the AMC Recycling Program of the Year Award, and the Air Force Recycling Individual Excellence Award.
29 Mar 1996-Members of the 319 ARW deployed to Istres, France in support of Operation DECISIVE ENDEAVOR in order to monitor flying in the airspace over Bosnia-Herzegovina.
3 May 1996-Grand Forks Air Force Base was honored with the White House Closing the Circle Award for its recycling programs.
24 May 1996- The 319th Air Refueling Wing received an Outstanding rating from the AMC Inspector General for its performance during an operational readiness inspection making it the first super core tanker wing to perform such a feat.
21 Jun 1996- The 911th Air Refueling Squadron was named the best air refueling squadron in the Air Mobility Command.
21 Jun 1996-The Environmental Protection Agency selected Grand Forks Air Force Base to receive the Outstanding Achievement Award for pollution prevention, waste minimization and recycling.
28 Jun 1996- Members of the 319th Air Refueling Wing deployed to Qatar to take part in the Joint Task Force Southwest Asia, where they helped monitor the no- fly zone over Iraq.
4 Jul 1996-Members of the 912th Air Refueling Squadron deployed to Riyadh Air Base, Saudi Arabia where its mission was to safely refuel aircraft in support of the no-fly zone over southern Iraq.
30 Aug 1996-Members of the 319th Air Refueling Wing deployed to the Gulf Region to support the enforcement of the no-fly zone over Iraq.
22 Nov 1996-Members of the 319th Air Refueling Wing deployed to provide support for humanitarian efforts with refugees from Rwanda.
17 Jan 1997-Members from the 911th Air Refueling Squadron and the 319th Aircraft Generation Squadron deployed to RAF Mildenhall, England to support the European Tanker Task Force.
24 Jan 1997-Grand Forks Air Force Base received the Presidential Hammer Award for its base recycling programs.
31 Jan 1997-More than one hundred wing members deployed to Duluth, Minnesota to support an investigation of an Air National Guard F-16 crash in the area.
14 Feb 1997-Members of the 912th Air Refueling Squadron deployed to RAF Mildenhall, England to swap out with the 911th Air Refueling Squadron in support of the European Tanker Task Force.
24 Mar 1997-The 319th Air Refueling Wing realigned under the 15th Air Force. It was previously part of the 21st Air Force.
28 Mar 1997-Members of the 912 Air Refueling Squadron and 319th Aircraft Generation Squadron deployed to Howard Air Force Base, Panama in support of Operation CONSTANT VIGIL.
April 1997- After a harsh winter the Grand Forks area suffered a devastating flood. Members of the Grand Forks Air Force Base were called into action, first to protect the town from the rising waters and later to house the victims of the disaster.
18 Apr 1997- Members of the 906th Air Refueling Squadron and the 319th Aircraft Generation Squadron deployed in support of the Southwest Asia Tanker Task Force in Saudi Arabia.
July 1997- The 319th Air Refueling Wing received its third Outstanding Unit Award for its service from 1 July 1995 to 30 June 1997.
1 Jul 1997- The 319th Security Police Squadron became the 319th Security Forces Squadron.
1 Aug 1997- Members of the 911th Air Refueling Squadron and 319th Aircraft Generation Squadron deployed to Incirlik Air Base, Turkey in support of Operation NORTHERN WATCH.
14 Nov 1997- Gen. Walter Kross, AMC Commander, presented the 319 ARW with the Humanitarian Service Medal for their support of the Grand Forks community during a devastating flood during the previous spring.
12 Dec 1997- Members of the 319th Air Refueling Wing participated in Operation PHOENIX SCORPION in response to renewed Iraqi aggression.
2 Jul 1998- The 321st Missile Group inactivated.
25 Sep 1998- The 319h Air Refueling Wing accepted newly modified KC-135 aircraft into its fleet. These aircraft underwent Pacer CRAG modification to the cockpit.
16 Oct 1998- Members of the 319th Air Refueling Wing joined other US air and naval forces in support of NATO forces in Kosovo to defend against the Serbs.
12 Nov 1998- 319th Air Refueling Wing members deployed to the Persian Gulf to support a force build up in response to renewed Iraqi aggression.
1999- The wing participated in various deployments to the Persian Gulf in support of Operation DESERT FOX.
1999- The wing participated in deployments throughout Europe in support of Operation ALLIED FORCE.