Chicagoland/O'Hare Chapter 142

                             Air Force Association







  • 09 Mar 1955 - Lt. Col. Robert R. Scott, in a F-84F Thunderstreak, set a three hour, 44-minute and 53-second record for the 2,446 mile flight from Los Angeles to New York.



  • 09 Mar 1959 - The 16 Fighter Interceptor Squadron at Naha AB, Okinawa, became the first squadron in the Pacific Air Forces to convert to Convair's F-102 Delta Dagger. The unit, previously equipped with F-86D Sabres, became operationally ready later in September.

  • 09 Mar 1977 - The 354th Tactical Fighter Wing at Myrtle Beach AFB, S.C., received the first A-10 for hands-on-training.

  • 09 Mar 1998 - Air Mobility Command performed 104 airlift and 110 air refueling missions for a six-nation tour of Africa through April 9. On March 22, President William J. Clinton, First Lady Hillary Rodham Clinton and Secretary of State Madeleine K. Albright left Andrews AFB, Md., on Air Force One for a 12-day journey through sub-Saharan Africa. It was the first time a sitting American president visited Ghana, Uganda, Rwanda, South Africa, Botswana, and Senegal.


  • 10 Mar 1959 - A Snark missile flew a several-thousand-mile round trip after launching from Cape Canaveral, Fla.

  • 10 Mar 1959 - The X-15A-1 rocket research plane completed its first captive flight on the wing of a B-52.

  • 10 Mar 1961 - The 565th Strategic Missile Squadron became the second U.S. war-ready intercontinental ballistic missile unit to achieve operational status.






  • 10 Mar 1966 - Tactical Air Command accepted its first F-4D at Nellis AFB, Nev



  • 10 Mar 1966 - Maj. Bernard Fisher from the 1st Commando Squadron landed an A-1E on A Shau runway, Vietnam, under fire from North Vietnamese troops to rescue a downed pilot, Maj. Dafford W. Myers from the 602nd Fighter Squadron. President Lyndon B. Johnson presented Major Fisher the Medal of Honor for heroism on Jan. 19, 1967 and he became the first Air Force man to be so honored for action in the Southeast Asian conflict.

  • 10 Mar 1967 - Capt. Merlyn Hans Dethlefsen used his severely damaged F-105 to silence enemy defenses at the Thai Nguygen steel plant in North Vietnam, despite intense enemy ground fire and fighter attacks. For this action Captain Dethlefsen was awarded the Medal of Honor.

  • 10 Mar 1967 - Capt. Mac C. Brestel, an F-105 pilot with the 355th Tactical Fighter Squadron at Takhli Royal Thai AFB, Thailand, became the first U.S. Air Force pilot to down two MiGs in one mission in the Vietnam War.

  • 10 Mar 1977 - The first woman navigator candidates report to Mather AFB, Calif., to begin undergraduate navigator training.

  • 10 Mar 1995 - The 11th Space Warning Squadron, Schriever AFB, Colo., became the first unit with the ability to warn battlefield commanders of incoming theater ballistic missiles, such as the Scud missiles fired by Iraq in Desert Storm.

  • 11 Mar 1964 - The 500th Minuteman intercontinental ballistic missile rolled off the assembly line at Air Force Plant No. 77 at Ogden, Utah.








  • 11 Mar 1974 - The YF-16 attained Mach 2 for the first time in test flights at Edwards AFB, Calif.


  • 11 Mar 1986 - An Air Force Program Management Directive sought a night and under-the-weather surface attack capability for the F-15.

  • 11 Mar 1991 - Returning from Desert Storm, Air Force Reserve C-130 Hercules aircraft began flying reservists from ports of entry in the U.S. to their home units in Operation Arc Wind.


  • 12 Mar 1970 - Vice President Spiro T. Agnew gave Harmon International Trophies to Maj. Jerault R. Gentry, an Air Force Flight Test Center pilot and to Col. Frank Borman, James A. Lovell Jr and Lt. Col. William A. Anders, the Apollo VIII crewmen.

  • 12 Mar 1980 - Two 410th Bombardment Missile Wing B-52Hs from K. I. Sawyer AFB, Mich., flew nonstop, 19,353 nautical miles around the world in 42 hours and 30 minutes, averaging 488 mph for three days. Majors William H. Thurston and John M. Durham commanded the flight from Offutt AFB, Neb., across Canada, the North Atlantic, Europe, the Mediterranean, the Indian Ocean, the Strait of Malacca, the South China Sea and back to Offutt AFB. Neb. They earned the Mackay Trophy.




  • 12 Mar 1998 - A C-141 from the 445th Airlift Wing, Wright-Patterson AFB, Ohio, landed at Randolph AFB, Texas, with more than 50 former U.S. prisoners of war for Operation Homecoming's silver anniversary. On Feb. 12, 1973, the same C-141 airlifted Americans from Gia Lam Airport, Hanoi, North Vietnam on the first mission to repatriate American servicemen from Southeast Asia. The Starlifter took the men to Randolph AFB, for the 25th annual "Freedom Flyers" reunion.




  • 13 Mar 1958 - The U.S. Air Force Ballistic Missile Committee picked Lowry AFB, Colo., to become the first Titan I base.








  • 13 Mar 1977 - Tactical Air Command received its first air refuelable Combat Talon C-130 Hercules.







  • 14 Mar 1970 - Two A-7D Corsair IIs flew 3,502 unrefueled miles from Edwards AFB, Calif., to Homestead AFB, Fla., to show its capabilities.


  • 14 Mar 1988 - In ceremonies at Greenville, Texas, E-Systems Inc., unveiled the new MC-130H Combat Talon II special operations airlifter. The Air Force planned to use aircraft for special operations units to infiltrate/exfiltrate troops and resupply behind enemy lines at night or in poor weather.


  • 15 Mar 1950 - The U.S. Air Force takes responsibility for all strategic guided missiles.

  • 15 Mar 1956 - The U.S. Air Force issued a requirement for an air-to-surface missile for the B-52. This missile became the Hound Dog.

  • 15 Mar 1964 - U.S. Air Forces in Europe accepted five 412L air weapon control system sites, the first in this new air defense system.






  • 15 Mar 1967 - The Sikorsky HH-53B, the largest and fastest helicopter in U.S. Air Force inventory, makes its first flight. It is slated for Aerospace Rescue and Recovery operations in Southeast Asia.


  • 15 Mar 1968 - Maj. Jerauld R. Gentry flew the modified HL-10 Lifting Body on its first flight.

  • 15 Mar 1969 - Exercise Focus Retina deployed a brigade of the 82nd Airborne Division from Fort Bragg, N.C., in the largest tactical airlift attempted to date to move 2,500 assault troops and supporting equipment in Korea. The brigade staged through Okinawa and dropped into the Korean exercise area on March 17. Military Air Command, Tactical Air Command, the U.S. Strike Command and Air Force Communications Service units supported the airlift.

  • 15 Mar 1975 - From Vandenberg AFB, Calif., a Production Verification Missile completed the last flight in the Wing VI Hybrid Explicit Flight Program. It supported the Wing VI configuration upgrade at Grand Forks AFB, N.D.

  • 15 Mar 1983 - Strategic Air Command successfully demonstrated its new sea interdiction capability through March 28, with three AGM-84 Harpoon missile launches from a B-52 at the Pacific Missile Test Range on Kwajelein Atoll.

  • 15 Mar 1985 - A Military Airlift Command C-5 Galaxy delivered 1,000 rolls of plastic sheeting used to create protective shelters for victims of a February 3rd earthquake that ravaged the coastal and interior regions of central Chile.

  • 15 Mar 1992 - For one month, C-5 Galaxies and C-130 Hercules aircraft moved 165 tons of food, medical supplies, clothing, blankets and other relief items to eastern Turkey following a major earthquake.


  • 16 Mar 1962 - From Cape Canaveral the U.S. Air Force launched its first Titan II down the Atlantic Missile Range to a target 5,000 miles away.

  • 16 Mar 1983 - The U.S. Air Force ended the German Air Force pilot training program at Luke AFB, Ariz., after 25 years.






  • 16 Mar 1995 - An HH-60 Pave Hawk helicopter from the 56th Rescue Squadron, Keflavik AB, Iceland, saved three Icelandic skiers caught in a blizzard.


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