7th Reconnaissance Group
Constituted as 7th Photographic Group on 5 Feb 1943. Activated on 1
1943. Redesignated 7th Photographic Reconnaissance and Mapping
Group in May
1943, 7th Photographic Group (Reconnaissance) in Nov 1943,
Reconnaissance Group in Jun 1945. Transferred, without
equipment, to England on 7 Jul 1943 and assigned to
Eighth AF. Used Spitfires
and L-5's to obtain information about
bombardment targets and damage inflicted
by bombardment operations;
provide mapping service for air and ground units;
observe and report on
enemy transportation, installations, and positions; and
obtain data on
weather conditions. Prior to Jun 1944, photographed airfields,
industrial establishments, and ports in France, the Low Countries,
Germany. Received a DUC for operations during the period, 31 May-30
when its coverage of bridges, marshalling yards, canals,
highways, rivers, and
other targets contributed much to the success of
the Normandy campaign.
Covered missile sites in France during Jul, and
in Aug carried out
photographic mapping missions for ground forces
advancing across France.
Provided reconnaissance support for the
airborne attack on Holland in Sep and
for the Battle of the Bulge, Dec
1944-Jan 1945. Used P-51's to escort its own
during the last months of the war as the group supported
drive across the Rhine and into Germany. Took part in the
bomb-damage assessment following V-E Day. Inactivated in England
on 21 Nov
1945. Disbanded on 6 Mar 1947.
Squadrons. 13th: 1943-1945. 14th: 1943-1945. 22d: 1943-1945.
1943-1945. 28th: 1943. 29th: 1943. 30th: 1943.
Stations. Peterson Field, Colo, 1 May-7 Jul 1943; Mount Farm, England,
Jul 1943; Chalgrove, England, Mar 1945; Hitcham, England, Oct-21 Nov
Commanders. Col James G Hall, 7 Jul 1943; Col Homer L Saunders,
1943; Col Paul T Cullen, 1 Jan 1944; Lt Col George A Lawson, 17 Feb
Col Norris E Hartwell, 7 May 1944; Lt Col Clarence A Shoap, 9
Aug 1944; Col
George W Humbrecht, Oct 1944; Maj Hubert M Childress, 18
Campaigns. Air Offensive, Europe; Normandy; Northern France;
Ardennes-Alsace; Central Europe.
Decorations. Distinguished Unit Citation: France, 31 May-30 Jun
French Croix de Guerre With Palm: 1944.
Data from Air Force Combat Units of World War II By Maurer, Maurer, Published 1986