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TOPIC: The USAAF/USAAC/USAF


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RE: The United States Air Force


Martlesham Heath Tower Museum proudly sporting the RAF Ensign and the Flag of the USA





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Norman Rose of The Martlesham Heath Aviation Society 'doing his duty' at The Control Tower Museum



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The USAAF/USAAC/USAF


Yesterday I took a trip to Parham old airfield [again] I stood on this bleak outpost with the wind blowing in my face thinking back to November 1943/44 and wondering what a hive of activity this airfield would be like, with those taking off/returning from bombing missions in their B17's.

One of these B17's took off from Parham for a bombing raid on Germany, with a full fuel and bomb load the aircraft failed to gain height and crashed into a bank at the north end of Parham Village, this destroyed the Village Chapel but not one parishioner was injured, sadly the nine crew on board perished and a memorial plaque can be found on the inside North Wall of the Church Tower, ie on the left as you enter the church




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RE: The United States Air Force


Shepherds Grove a mix of RAF/USAF aircraft and rockets from WWII

Shepherds Grove Airfield a brief history.

During the war, Shepherds Grove was a base for Stirling bombers. It was, in fact, built for the USAAF in 1943, but it was assigned to the RAF's 3 Group as a satellite of Stradishall in April 1944.


At the end of 1944 Shepherds Grove was transferred to 38 Group.

In January 1945 numbers 196 and 299 Stirling transport squadrons moved in. These squadrons were involved in supply drops for Special operations and towed gliders from Shepherds Grove as part of the Rhine crossing. Stirlings continued to deliver mail and stores overseas until March 1946.


In May 1946 the station was taken over by 60 Group as a satellite of RAF Watton Radio Warfare Establishment and some Avro Ansons and Lancasters were positioned here.


In 1950 the station was put on 'Care and Maintenance'.
In 1951 it was loaned to the USAF and in August the 116th squadron of the 81st Fighter Interceptor Wing brought in F86A Sabres, the first in this country. The 92nd squadron joined them soon after.


In 1952 the 116th became the 78th Fighter Squadron, and in 1954 received F84F Thunderstreaks. The 78th moved to Woodbridge in December 1958.


In 1959 Shepherds Grove became a Thor Missile Base and a flight of 82 Squadron operated them until their removal in 1963.


The site then changed to agriculture with an industrial estate.


This item is copied from the St Edmundsbury Borough Council Web Site were further information on the history of the USAF in Europe can be found.

More information can be found on http://shepherdsgrove.com



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Robert Cutchens

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I do actually recall the Rod and Gun Club.  My mom worked there for a while when we were stationed at the twin bases between '83 and '91.  Lots of good times.  When we first moved to England, we lived in Shottisham up on Villa Hill in a house owned by the Nickels.  Some of my best friends were Martin and Neal Chattington as well as Brian and Ian Cooper.  Seems like a lifetime ago but technology and the Internet has really made the world seem a smaller place and traveling back in time, if only through nostalgic drives down "memory lane" via a a Google Earth rendering, is just very exciting.  Incidentally, when I lived in Shottisham my surname was Hemphill.  Not sure if anyone reading this remembers me or knows of the friends I mentioned here but please don't hesitate to contact me either way.

robert_cutchens@yahoo.com

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