307th Fighter Squadron Stingers F-16 Model
Fly with the 307th FS in this handcrafted F-16 model. Each piece is carved from wood and painted to provide a piece you’ll love.
Length – 18 inches
World War II
Initially established under Third Air Force in early 1942 as a fighter squadron at Baer Field, Indiana, flying some antisubmarine patrols in the Gulf of Mexico.
Deployed to the European Theater of Operations in June 1942 without aircraft as its Curtiss P-40 Warhawks and Bell P-39 Airacobras were deemed unsuitable for use against German aircraft in long-range bomber escort duties. Was re-equipped with RAF Supermarine Spitfire Vs and its pilots and technicians spent a two-month period undergoing intensive training in flying and fighting with RAF pilots in the British aircraft from airfields in southeast England. The squadron flew its first combat mission on 18 August 1942, when it attacked enemy positions in occupied France.
Assigned to the new Twelfth Air Force and deployed to Gibraltar in November 1942 as part of the Operation Torch invasion forces, initially operating from former Vichy French airfields in Algeria. Advanced east across Algeria and Tunisia during the North African Campaign, supporting the Fifth United States Army which halted Field Marshal Rommel’s advance on allied positions.
Spitfires from the squadron provided support for Allied Forces as the Invasion of Italy began with the capture of Sicily, and later the landings by Allied forces in Fascist Italy, moving north supporting the Fifth Army during the Italian Campaign. As Allied bomber forces operating from Italy began the strategic bombing of Axis petroleum and communications facilities in central Europe and the Balkans, the squadron was re-equipped with the North American P-51 Mustang to replace the shorter-ranged Spitfire. In August 1944, the P-51’s were involved in the invasion of Southern France. In December 1944, the first destruction of a German jet fighter by a 308th P-51 occurred, eventually operating from the Po Valley in Northern Italy at the end of the European War in May 1945.
By war’s end, the squadron had earned two Distinguished Unit Citations and was involved in eight campaigns The squadron was largely demobilized during the summer of 1945 in Europe, a skeleton force returned to Drew Field, Florida in August, inactivating largely as an administrative unit in November.
Reactivated from elements of several inactivating organizations in Germany in August 1946, Performed occupation duty and operating early-model Lockheed P-80A Shooting Star jets from former Luftwaffe jet-capable airfields at AAF Station Giebelstadt and AAF Station Kitzingen. Returned to the United States in June 1947 without personnel or equipment which remained in Germany.
Assigned to Strategic Air Command at Langley Field, Virginia as a fighter-escort squadron, equipped with straight-winged Republic F-84E Thunderjets. Assigned to Turner AFB, Georgia with mission of long-range escort of B-29 Superfortress bombers, later B-50 and B-36 Peacemakers as newer aircraft came into operation by SAC. Inactivated 1958 with phaseout of B-36 and end of SAC escort fighter concept.
Reactivated in 1959 as Tactical Air Command North American F-100 Super Sabre fighter-bomber squadron at George Air Force Base, California. Trained in tactical air support of ground forces, deploying to NATO bases for operational exercises. Reassigned to Homestead Air Force Base, Florida after the Cuban Missile Crisis, late 1962 to provide air defense of South Florida. Was deployed for 3 months to Southeast Asia, in 1964 as part of advisory forces operating against North Vietnamese and National Liberation Front forces in South Vietnam.
F-4D Phantom II of the 307th[note 1] Reassigned to NATO, becoming permanently based at Torrejon AB, Spain in 1966 when SAC turned Spanish bases over to USAFE. Initially equipped with F-100s, in 1970 received McDonnell F-4E Phantom IIs. Reassigned back to TAC at Homestead AFB in 1971, as part of re-establishment of 31st TFW upon its return from duty in Southeast Asia. Was deployed to Thailand, July 1972, engaging North Vietnamese forces in northern South Vietnam in response to the communist spring offensive. Returned to the United States in the late fall, 1972.
For the next 20 years, performed routine training and tactical deployments from Homestead, upgraded to the General Dynamics F-16A Fighting Falcon in 1988. At the end of 1986 the squadron and wing changed tail codes from ZF to HS which better matched the squadrons location in Homestead. Upgraded to receive Shaw AFB block 25s in August 1990. With the Gulf War build up and the 363rd TFW at Shaw AFB deploying to Saudi Arabia meant no more block 25s were available. With some F-16A/B block 15s still in service for the 307th TFS, it continued to operate both types.
When Desert Storm ended it was decided to convert the 31st TFW to block 40 F-16s instead. Up to this point about ten block 25s had reached the 307th FS and had been painted in ‘Emerald Knight’ markings. They were all sent to other units. Neither of the 31st TFWs other sister squadrons flew the block 25. In March 1991 the 307th began conversion to the block 40 version of the F-16. On 1 October 1991 the word ‘Tactical’ was dropped and unit became the 307th Fighter Squadron. By early 1992 the conversion to block 40 F-16s with the general purpose role was complete.
Squadron aircraft at Homestead after Hurricane Andrew
Moved to Moody Air Force Base, Georgia in late August 1992 when Hurricane Andrew threatened South Florida. It was to be a temporary move to Moody, but Homestead AFB was so heavily damaged it was never re-opened for any of the 31st FW squadrons and was eventually turned over to the Air Force Reserve Command’s 482nd Fighter Wing and renamed Homestead Air Reserve Base. After the destruction of Homestead AFB, the 307th FS was reassigned permanently to the 347th Operations Group at Moody. At this point the ‘HS’ tail code began to be replaced with a ‘MY’ tail code, with some block 40 F-16s were delivered right from the factory to the 307th Fighter Squadron’s new home base. It deployed to Saudi Arabia from, March–June 1995 in support of Operation Southern Watch. Inactivated in 1995 when Air Combat Command temporarily closed down ACC operations at the base, temporarily turning Moody over to Air Education and Training Command as a training base.
Reactivated in 2003 as an Air Force Reserve Command McDonnell Douglas F-15 Eagle training squadron. Trained Air Force Reserve pilots in Eagles at Langley Air Force Base, Virginia as an adjunct for the 1st Fighter Wing. The unit was moved from Langley to Seymour Johnson Air Force Base in 2010 in realignment with the phaseout of the F-15C at Langley pending the arrival of the F-22 Raptor and the need for an Associate Air Force Reserve F-15E Strike Eagle unit at Seymour Johnson.