Constituted as 356th Fighter Group on 8 Dec 1942 and activated on 12 Dec. Moved to England, Aug-Sep 1943, and assigned to Eighth AF. Served in combat from Oct 1943 tO May 1945, participating in operations that prepared for the invasion of the Continent, and supporting the landings in Normandy and the subsequent Allied drive across France and Germany. Used P-47's until they were replaced by P-51's in Nov 1944. From Oct 1943 until Jan 1944, operated as escort for bombers that attacked such objectives as industrial areas, missile sites, airfields, and communications. Engaged primarily in bombing and strafing missions after 3 Jan 1944, with its targets including U-boat installations, barges, shipyards, airdromes, hangars, marshalling yards, locomotives, trucks, oil facilities, flak towers, and radar stations. Bombed and strafed in the Arnheim area on 17, 18, and 23 Sep 1944 to neutralize enemy gun emplacements; received a DUC for this contribution to the airborne attack on Holland. Flew its last combat mission, escorting B-17's dropping propaganda leaflets, on 7 May 1945. Returned to the US in Nov. Inactivated on 10 Nov 1945.
Redesignated 118th Fighter Group. Allotted to ANG (Tenn) on 24 May 1946. Extended federal recognition on 2 Oct 1947. Redesignated 118th Composite Group in Nov 1950, and 118th Tactical Reconnaissance Group in Feb 1951. Ordered to active duty on 1 Apr 1951 and assigned to Tactical Air Command. Used RF-47, RF-51, RF-80, and RB-26 aircraft for training and maneuvers. Relieved from active service and returned, without personnel and equipment, to control of ANG (Tenn) on 1 Jan 1953.
106th: 1951-1953. 185th: 1951-1953.
Westover Field, Mass, 12 Dec 1942
2d Lt Joseph Moris Jr, 28 Dec 1942
Air Offensive, Europe; Normandy; Northern France; Rhineland; Ardennes-Alsace; Central Europe.
Distinguished Unit Citation: Holland, 17, 18, and 23 Sep 1944.
On a blue oval with a yellow border an aerial camera supporting binoculars and a torch, the whole group winged, all yellow with flame proper and lenses blue and white, above the torch and between the tips of the wings three white stars. (Approved 5 Jan 1954.)