Constituted as 36th Pursuit Group (Interceptor) on 22 Dec 1939. Activated on 1 Feb 1940. Trained with P-36's. Moved to Puerto Rico in Jan 1941. Equipped with P-39 and P-40 aircraft. Served as part of the defense force for the Caribbean area and Panama Canal, and flew antisubmarine patrols. Redesignated 36th Fighter Group in May 1942. Returned to the US, May-Jun 1943. Trained with P-47's.
Moved to England, Mar-Apr 1944. Assigned to Ninth AF. Served in combat in the European theater from May 1944 to May 1945. Operated primarily as a fighter-bomber organization, strafing and dive-bombing armored vehicles, trains, bridges, buildings, factories, troop concentrations, gun emplacements, airfields, and other targets. Also flew some escort missions. Began operations from England in May 1944 with armed reconnaissance, escort, and interdictory missions in preparation for the invasion of Normandy. Participated in the invasion in Jun 1944 by patrolling the air over the landing zone and by flying close-support and interdictory missions. Moved to France, Jul-Aug 1944. Supported the breakthrough at St Lo in Jul and the thrust of Third Army towaril Germany in Aug and Sep. Received a DUC for operations on 1 Sep 1944 when, in a series of missions, the group attacked German columns south of the Loire in order to disrupt the enemy's retreat across central France to Dijon. Moved to Belgium in Oct and supported Ninth Army. Participated in the Battle of the Bulge, Dec 194~-Jan 1945, by flying armed reconnaissance and close-support missions. Aided First Army's push across the Roer River in Feb 1945. Supported operations at the Remagen bridgehead and during the airborne assault across the Rhine in Mar. Received second DUC for performance on 12 Apr 1945 when the group, operating through intense antiaircraft fire, relentlessly attacked airfields in southern Germany, destroying a large hangar and numerous aircraft. Remained in Europe for several months after V-E Day.
Transferred, without personnel and equipment, to the US in Feb 1946, the group's squadrons being inactivated in Mar. Headquarters was transferred, without personnel and equipment, to the Panama Canal Zone in Sep, and the squadrons were activated in Oct. Equipped with P-47's; converted to F-80's in Dec 1947. Moved to Germany, Jul-Aug 1948, and became part of United States Air Forces in Europe. Redesignated 36th Fighter-Bomber Group in Jan 1950, and 36th Fighter-Day Group in Aug 1954. Equipped successively with F-80, F-84, F-86, and F-100 aircraft after arriving in Europe in 1948.
Squadrons. 22d: 1940-1946, 1946. 23d: 1940-1946, 1946-. 32d: 1940-1943; 1955-. 53d: 1943-1946, 1946.
Stations. Langley Field, Va, 1 Feb 1940-2 Jan 1941; Losey Field, PR, Jan 1941-May 1943; Morrison Field, Fla, May 1943; Mitchel Field, NY, c. 3 Jun 1943; Charleston, SC, 23 June 1943; Alamogordo AAFld, NM, Sep 1943; Scribner AAFld, Neb, Nov 1943-Mar 1944; Kingsnorth, England, Apr 1944; Brucheville, France, Jul 1944; Le Mans, France, c. 23 Aug 1944; Athis, France, Sep 1944; Juvincourt, France, c. 1 Oct 1944; Le Culot, Belgium, c. 23 Oct 1944; Aachen, Germany, 28 Mar 1945; Niedermennig, Germany, c. 8 Apr 1945; Kassel/Rothwesten, Germany, c. 21 Apr 1945-15 Feb 1946; Bolling Field, DC, 15 Feb-Sep 1946; Howard Field, CZ, Oct 1946-Jul 1948; Furstenfeldbruck AFB, Germany, Aug 1948; Bitburg AB, Germany, 17 Nov 1952-.
Commanders. Lt Col Ned Schramm, c. 1 Feb 1940; Maj Charles A Harrington, c. 15 Jul 1941; Lt Col Glenn O Barcus, c. 1 Nov 1941; Maj Richard P Klocko, c. 20 Feb 1942; Maj James B League Jr, c. 18 Jul 1942; Maj William L Curry, c. 1 Sep 1942; Maj [Earl H(?)] Dunham, c. 1 Oct 1942; Lt Col William L Curry, c. 14 Jan 1943; Lt Col Van H Slayden, 12 Jan 1944; Lt Col Paul P Douglas Jr, Apr 1945; Lt Col John L Wright, 30 Jun 1945; Maj Arthur W Holderness Jr, c. 25 Sep 1945; Lt Col William T McBride, 9 Nov 1945-unkn; Col Henry R Spicer, c. 15 Oct 1946 unkn; Col Hubert Zemke, 1949; Col William A Daniel, c. 1 Dec 1949; Lt Col George F Ceuleers, Dec 1950; Col George T Lee, Mar 1951; Col Seth McKee, Dec 1951; Col Marvin E Childs, May 1953; Col Edward A McGough III, Dec 1954-.
Campaigns. Antisubmarine, American Theater; Air Offensive, Europe; Normandy; Northern France; Rhineland; Ardennes-Alsace; Central Europe.
Decorations. Distinguished Unit Citations: France, 1 Sep 1944; Germany, 12 Apr 1945. Cited in the Order of the Day, Belgian Army: 1 Oct 1944-; 18 Dec 1944-15 Jan 1945. Belgian Fourragere.
Insigne. Shield: Or, an arrow point palewise gules on a chief azure a wing argent. (Approved 19 Jun 1940.)
Data from Air Force Combat Units of World War II By Maurer, Maurer, Published 1986