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2nd Troop Carrier Squadron and 315th Troop Carrier Squadron | 443rd Troop Carrier Group | 10th AAF

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2nd Troop Carrier Squadron and 315th Troop Carrier Squadron | 443rd Troop Carrier Group |10th AAF | CBI

As part of the 443rd Troop Carrier Group, the 2nd Troop Carrier Squadron and 315 Troop Carrier Squadron operated in the CBI theater until after the war, using C-47's and sometimes gliders to transport Allied troops, evacuate wounded personnel, and haul supplies and materiel, including gasoline, oil, signal and engineering equipment, medicine, rations, and ammunition. The group's missions were concerned primarily with support for Allied forces that were driving southward through Burma, but the 443d also made many flights to China. They moved to China in Aug 1945 and received a DUC for transporting a Chinese army of more than 30,000 men from Chihkiang to Nanking in Sep 1945.

By the end of 1943, the value of air supply was well appreciated, and the plans for the reconquest of Burma, then in Japanese hands, included it as an integral part. In fact, the only feasible way a force advancing into the Burmese jungle could be supplied was by air. The newly created Eastern Air Command had four components -- one of which was the Troop Carrier Command including American and British TC units. The 1st and 2nd Troop Carrier Squadrons were already performing this kind of service in northern Burma in late 1943.

Therefore, they were ready to assist the British advance to Akyab which began in January 1944. Early in February British troops were isolated and hard-pressed by the Japanese. The troop carriers had to borrow ships from the air transport command and deliver supplies including much-needed food and spite of heavy antiaircraft fire and fighter attack. By the end of the month, the situation had been saved, the TCC had played a major role -- one the troop carriers were to play over and over again in the Far East.

In 1944 the 315th Troop Carrier squadron helped fly in brigades of Indian Chindits and supplies. Between March 20 and April 5 the 315th completed 95 sorties and dropped 475,000 pounds.

In a related operation on May 17, Merrill's marauders took the Myitkyina South Airfield from the Japanese, and is planned immediately sent a call for reinforcements. Several C 47's of the 2nd Troop Carrier Squadron were already there to dropped supplies and landed despite Japanese fire which shot out one of the plane's hydraulic system. The airfield could be held because of the air supply and airlifted reinforcement. Air transport operations at Myitkyina went on until the end of the war.

2nd Troop Carrier Squadron

Lineage:  Constituted 2 Provisional Transport Squadron on 1 Mar 1935. Redesignated 2 Transport Squadron, and activated, on 28 Jun 1935. Redesignated 2 Troop Carrier Squadron on 4 Jul 1942. Inactivated on 24 Dec 1945. Redesignated 2 Airlift Squadron, and activated, on 1 Jun 1992.

Assignments:  Middletown Air Depot, PA, 28 Jun 1935; 10 Transport (later, 10 Troop Carrier) Group, 20 May 1937; Tenth Air Force, c. 17 Feb 1943 (attached to India-China Wing, Air Transport Command, 9 Mar-1 Jul 1943); Assam Air Base Command, c. 1 Jul 1943 (attached to Troop Carrier Command, Eastern Air Command, 20 Dec 1943-6 Mar 1944); 443 Troop Carrier Group, 6 Mar 1944-24 Dec 1945. 23 Operations Group, 1 Jun 1992; 43 Operations Group, 1 Apr 1997-.

Stations:  Olmsted Field, PA, 28 Jun 1935; Stout Field, IN, 21 May 1942; Kellogg Field, MI, 1 Jul 1942; Bowman Field, KY, 4 Aug 1942; Pope Field, NC, 1 Oct 1942-23 Jan 1943; Yangkai, China, 17 Feb 1943; Dinjan, India, 1 Jul 1943; Shingbwiyang, Burma, 14 Aug 1944; Dinjan, India, 1 Jun 1945; Chihkiang, China, 24 Aug 1945; Hankow, China, 25 Sep-21 Nov 1945; Camp Anza, CA, 23-24 Dec 1945. Pope AFB, NC, 1 Jun 1992-.

Aircraft:  C-27, 1935-1937; C-33, 1936-1939; including C-39 and various civilian and military modifications of DC-3 during period 1939-1941; C-47, 1942-1945; C-46, 1945. C-130, 1992-.

Operations:  Trained transport pilots, 21 May-1 Oct 1942; airborne assault on Myitkyina, Burma, 17 May 1944; aerial transportation in China-Burma-India (CBI) Theater, 25 Feb 1943-c. Aug 1945; airlift of Chinese troops to eastern China for disarmament operations, Sep-Nov 1945. Airlift for airborne troops, 1 Jun 1992-30 Mar 1997. Primary focus was rapid global mobility and partnership with US Army 82 Airborne Division, Fort Bragg, NC; also provided support for the White House, US embassies in Central and South America and humanitarian relief, Apr 1997-. Service Streamers. World War II American Theater.

Campaign Streamers:  World War II: India-Burma with Arrowhead; China Defensive; Central Burma; China Offensive.
 

Theater-made. Multi-piece leather, hand-painted. Design by Walt Disney Studios.

2tcs443tcg10aaf-700.jpg

 

Headquarters building for the 2nd Troop Carrier Squadron at Shingbwiyang. Idol in the foreground was "borrowed" from a nearby Burmese pagoda.

2nd_tcs_hq-ExCBI%20May%201953.jpg

Photo by Ed Harris. Ex-CBI Roundup. May, 1953.

 

315th Troop Carrier Squadron

Lineage:  Constituted 315th Troop Carrier Squadron on 8 Dec 1943. Activated on 1 Jan 1944. Inactivated on 28 Dec 1945. Activated in the reserve on 11 Jun 1948. Inactivated on 27 Jun 1949.

Assignments:  Tenth Air Force (attached to Troop Carrier Command, Easter Air Command), 1 Jan 1944; 443d Troop Carrier Group, 6 Mar 1944 - 26 Dec 1945. Second Air Force, 11 Jun 1948; Tenth Air Force, 1 Jul 1948. First Air Force, 15 Aug 1948; 443d Troop Carrier Group, 28 Oct 1948; Tenth Air Force, 28 Mar - 27 Jun 1949.

Stations:  Dinjan, India, 1 Jan 1944; Sylhet, India, 10 Jan 1944; Sookerating, India, 10 Jun 1944; Moran, India, 20 Jun 1944; Sookerating, India, 14 Jul 1944 (detachments operated from Shingbwiyang, Burma, 13 Jul - 8 Aug 1944, and Ledo, India, 14 Jul - 2 Aug 1944); Ledo, India, 2 Aug 1944; Dinjan, India, 10 May 1945; Chihkiang, China, 2 Sep 1945; Hankow, China, 25 Sep 1945; Shanghai, China, c. Oct - 5 Dec 1945; Ft. Lawton, Wash, 27-28 Dec 1945; Kent County Aprt, Mich, 11 Jun 1948 - 27 Jun 1949.

Aircraft:  C-47, 1944-1945; C-46, 1945.

Operations:  Airborne assault on Myitkyina, Burma, 17 May 1944; aerial transportation in CBI, 9 Jan 1944 - 25 Aug 1945; airlift of Chinese troops to bases in eastern China for disarmament operations, 2 Sep - 24 Oct 1945.

Campaigns:  India-Burma with Arrowhead; China Defensive; Central Burma; China Offensive.
 

Theater-made. Multi-piece leather, hand-painted.
315tcs443tcg10aaf-1-700.jpg

 

Douglas C-47 Skytrain
The C-47 was vital to the success of many Allied campaigns, in particular, those at Guadalcanal and in the jungles of New Guinea and Burma, where the C-47 and its naval version, the R4D, made it possible for Allied troops to counter the mobility of the light-traveling Japanese Army. C-47s were used to airlift supplies to the encircled American forces during the Battle of Bastogne in Belgium. Possibly its most influential role in military aviation, however, was flying "The Hump" from India into China. The expertise gained flying "The Hump" was later used in the Berlin Airlift, in which the C-47 played a major role until the aircraft were replaced by Douglas C-54 Skymasters.

The C-47 differed from the civilian DC-3 in numerous modifications, including being fitted with a cargo door, hoist attachment, and strengthened floor, along with a shortened tail cone for glider-towing shackles, and an astrodome in the cabin roof. During World War II, the armed forces of many countries used the C-47 and modified DC-3s for the transport of troops, cargo, and wounded. The U.S. naval designation was R4D. More than 10,000 aircraft were produced in Long Beach and Santa Monica, California and Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. Between March 1943 and August 1945, the Oklahoma City plant produced 5,354 C-47s.

General Dwight Eisenhower credited the C-47 as one of the four machines that won WWII, along with the bulldozer, landing craft, and the 6 by 6 truck. The C-47 Skytrain was one of the most durable and versatile of our aircraft, having served in three different wars.

C-47 Skytrain
640px-C47_Skytrain_-_Duxford_D-Day_Show_


C-47 cockpit
C-47_Skytrain_Dakota_%E2%80%9COld_Number

 

C-47 interior
C-47inside.jpg

 

Curtis-Wright C-46 Commando

Most famous for its operations in the China-Burma-India theater (CBI) and the Far East, the Commando was a workhorse in flying over "The Hump" (as the Himalaya Mountains were nicknamed by Allied airmen), transporting desperately needed supplies to troops in China from bases in India. A variety of transports had been employed in the campaign, but only the C-46 was able to handle the wide range of adverse conditions encountered by the USAAF. Unpredictably violent weather, heavy cargo loads, high mountain terrain, and poorly equipped and frequently flooded airfields proved a considerable challenge to the transport aircraft then in service, along with a host of engineering and maintenance nightmares due to a shortage of trained air and ground personnel.

After a series of mechanical problems were controlled if not surmounted, the C-46 proved its worth in the airlift operation in spite of continuing maintenance headaches. It could carry more cargo higher than other Allied twin-engine transport aircraft in the theater, including light artillery, fuel, ammunition, parts of aircraft and, on occasion, livestock. Its powerful engines enabled it to climb satisfactorily with heavy loads, staying aloft on one engine if not overloaded, though "war emergency" load limits of up to 40,000 lbs often erased any safety margins. Nevertheless, after the troublesome Curtiss-Electric electrically controlled pitch mechanism on the propellers had been removed, the C-46 continued to be employed in the CBI and over wide areas of southern China throughout the war years. Even so, the C-46 was referred to by ATC pilots as the "flying coffin" with at least 31 known instances of fires or explosions in flight between May 1943 and March 1945, and many others missing and never found. Other names used by the men who flew them were "The Whale," the "Curtiss Calamity," and the "plumber's nightmare". The C-46's huge cargo volume (twice that of the C-47), three times the weight, large cargo doors, powerful engines and long range also made it suitable for the vast distances of the Pacific island campaign. In particular, the U.S. Marines found the aircraft (known as the R5C) useful in their amphibious Pacific operations, flying supplies in and wounded personnel out of numerous and hastily built island landing strips.
 

A wartime photograph of a US Army Air Forces (USAAF) C-46 Commando
939px-C-46_Commando.jpg

 

C-46 cockpit
C-46_cockpit.jpg
 

C-46 aircraft conducting an aerial evacuation of wounded American troops from Manila, the capital of the Philippines,
shortly after US forces retook the city after intense fighting with the Japanese.

904px-C-46_medical_flight.jpg

 

Sources:
Chine Airlift -- The Hump. CBI Hump Pilot's Association. Turner Publishing. 1990. pp 9, 13.
Ex-CBI Roundup. May, 1953.
Maurer. Combat Squadrons of the Air Force World War II.

Polk, David. World War II Army Airborne Troop Carriers. Turner Publishing.
Rawls, Walton and Smith, David. Disney Dons Dogtags. Abbeville Publishing Group. 1992. p 67.
Watkins, Robert A. Battle Colors. Volume VI. p 62-63.

2tcs 443tcg 10aaf
315tcs 443tcg 10aaf

 


Long-time collector of WWII Aviation: AAF, USN and USMC.

ASMIC | OMSA | TAILHOOK

 

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The 2nd TCS (Disney) is the only one of Walika's collection that I actually have. I think it's a funny design, too. 


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Member, ASMIC.

Editor, ASMIC's The Trading Post

ASMIC Executive VP

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You have to love the Disney designs and for that matter most of the WW2 era cartoon characters,just kool and still have great appeal.


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