Constituted as 40th Bombardment Wing on 15 Jan 1943 and activated on 21 Jan. Redesignated 40th Bombardment Wing (Heavy) in May 1943. Moved to England, May-Jun 1943, for duty with Eight AF. Redesignated 40th Combat Bombardment Wing (Heavy) in Aug 1943, and 40th Bombardment Wing (Heavy) in Jun 1945. Served in combat in the European theater from Sep 1943 until Apr 1945, receiving a DUC for an attack on aircraft factories in central Germany on 11 Jan 1944. Remained in Europe after the war as part of United States Air Force in Europe. Inactivated in Germany on 25 Dec 1946.
Redesignated 40th Air Division. Organized in the US on 14 Mar 1951. Assigned to Strategic Air Command.
Components. Groups. 2d: 1945-1946. 92d: 1943-1946. 305th: 1943-1945, 1945-1946. 306th: 1943-1945, 1945-1946. 384th: 1945-1946. 492d: 1944-1945.
Wings. 31st Fighter: 1951-. 108th Fighter: 1951. 146th Fighter: 1951. 508th Fighter: 1952-.
Stations. MacDill Field, Fla, 21 Jan-c. 17 May 1943; Brampton Grange, England, Jun 1943; Thurleigh, England, c. 16 Sep 1943; Istres, France, 26 Jun 1945; Erlangen, Germany, 15 Nov 1945-25 Dec 1946. Turner AFB, Ga, 14 Mar 1951-.
Commanders. Maj Charles Normand, 1943-unkn; Brig Gen Howard M Turner, 16 Sep 1943; Col Anthony Q Mustoe, 22 Oct 1944; Brig Gen Emil C Kiel, 1 Mar-c. 1 Dec 1946. Col Eugene H Snavely, 14 Mar 1951; Brig Gen Thayer S Olds, 1 Jun 1951; Col Hubert Zemke, 11 Oct 1955-.
Campaigns. Air Offensive, Europe; Normandy; Northern France; Rhineland; Ardennes-Alsace; Central Europe.
Decorations. Distinguished Unit Citation: Germany, 11 Jan 1944.
Insigne. Shield: Azure, in dexter chief a stylized comet gules, bordered argent, with tail of stripes, gules, argent, and gules curved toward base edge, overall four lightning flashes or, bend sinisterwise, one above the other. (Approved 14 Apr 1952.)
Data from Air Force Combat Units of World War II By Maurer, Maurer, Published 1986