522d Special Operations Squadron F-16 Fighting Falcon Model
Fly with the 522d Special Operations Squadron in this handcrafted F-16 Fighting Falcon model. Each piece is carved from wood and handpainted to provide a piece you’ll love.
Length – 18 inches.
The 522d Special Operations Squadron, nicknamed the Fireballs, was a unit of the United States Air Force. It was part of the 27th Special Operations Group, the flying component of the 27th Special Operations Wing at Cannon Air Force Base. It was the first to operate the MC-130J Commando II.
The 522d was originally organized in 1940 as the 16th Bombardment Squadron. When the United States entered World War II the squadron was deploying to the Philippines. Its ground echelon fought as infantry, with most members surrendering at Bataan, while the air echelon fought in the Netherlands East Indies, earning the squadron three Distinguished Unit Citation (DUC)s. In May 1942, the squadron reformed at Hunter Field, Georgia. It deployed to the Mediterranean Theater of Operations, where it was redesignated the 522d Fighter-Bomber Squadron and was awarded an additional three DUCs. Following V-E Day, the squadron served in the occupation forces in Germany until the fall of 1945, when it returned to the United States and was inactivated.
The 522d was reactivated in 1946 and assigned to Strategic Air Command (SAC) as a fighter escort unit. During the Korean War, the squadron deployed to Japan and Korea and was awarded its seventh DUC. In 1957, SAC transferred its fighter squadrons to Tactical Air Command and the squadron became the 522d Tactical Fighter Squadron the following year. It conducted numerous deployments to bases in Europe and the Pacific, including one to Thailand, where it again saw combat during the Vietnam War. The squadron was inactivated in 2007, when its parent wing converted from the fighter to the special operations mission.
The squadron was reactivated in 2012 as a special operations unit, but was inactivated in 2014 and its mission, personnel and equipment were transferred to the 9th Special Operations Squadron.