85th Fighter Interceptor Squadron History

Scott AFB, Illinois 1952-1959

 

 

F-86D in markings of the era.

 

 

 

 

Lineage:

Constituted 85th Pursuit Squadron (Interceptor) on 13 Jan 1942. Activated on 9 Feb 1942.

Re-designated:

85th Pursuit Squadron (Interceptor) (Twin Engine) on 31 Jan 1942

85th Fighter Squadron (Twin Engine) on 15 May 1942

85th Fighter Squadron on 10 Sep 1942

85th Fighter Squadron, Single Engine, on 21 Aug 1944.

Inactivated on 15 Jul 1947.

The 85th Fighter Squadron, SE, was inactivated 15 July 1947, per AGAO-I 322 (27 Jun 47) AFCOR (510 e)-M, dated 3 July 1947.

Re-designated 85th Fighter-Interceptor Squadron on 11 Sep 1952. Activated on 1 Nov 1952.

 

Note by Jim Vorhies:

The 113th Fighter Interceptor Squadron, an Indiana Air National Guard unit, was activated at Scott during the Korean War on 1 February 1951. This was the unit of assignment until the 85th was reactivated as the 85th FIS, 1 November 1952 and concurrently re-designated as the 85th Fighter Interceptor Squadron.

Many of the ADC fighter squadrons were initially formed from ANG units that had been activated at the beginning of the Korean War. The guard units were returned to the guard (state control) when the air force units were formed. There were still quite a few of the ANG pilots in the 85th when I first arrived at Scott. Most were gone by early 1954. The 85th only had F-51's, T-6's and T-33's until late July or early August 1953. There were only about three other pilots checked out in F-86D's when the five of us from Pilot Training Class 53-C arrived in Sep 53. The F-51's continued to pull alert until about May of 1954. I think that my class was the first group of pilots to arrive that didn't get to check out in the F-51. The F-51 guys were gradually sent to Perrin or Tyndall for the 10 ride D checkout.

Jim

 

By Joseph Holden, December 1997

 

I was assigned to the 113th Fighter Interceptor Squadron upon completion of a wonderful, scenic tour in Korea. I arrived at Scott AFB around the 1st of September in 1952. The 113th was a National Guard Squadron from Indianapolis, Indiana and was equipped with F-51D/H and a few T-6s. The squadron was housed over base operations and maintenance was performed in the large hangar behind base operations. I think that at that time, Maj. Owen Farmer, Lt. Dick Gruber and myself, were the only Air Force types assigned. I was checked out in the T-6 on 6 September and the F-51D on 8 September. Never did get to fly the H model.

Gradually we got more Air Force types. Among them was Lt/Col. Joseph Klemovitch, and Capt. Oscar Fladmark(Oscar was killed in an automobile accident at Yuma, Arizona in 1957). On the 1st of November, 1952 the 113th designation was returned to Indiana and the 85th FIS was activated with Col. Klemovitch as commander. Most of the guard personnel and their aircraft remained with the 85th.

 

Inactivated on 1 Jul 1959.

Consolidated (15 Dec 1991) with the 4485th Test Squadron, which was designated, and activated, on 12 Apr 1971.

Re-designated 85th Test and Evaluation Squadron on 1 Dec 1991.

 

Assignments:

79th Pursuit(later 79th Fighter) Group, 9 Feb 1942-15 July 1947

33d Air Division, 1 Nov 1952;

20th Air Division, 1 Mar 1956-1 Jul 1959

USAF Tactical Air Warfare Center, 12 Apr 1971

4443d (later, 79th) Test and Evaluation Group, 1 Aug 1988-.

 

Stations.

Dale Mabry Field, FL, 9 Feb 1942

Morris Field, NC, 1 May 1942

East Boston Aprt, MA, 23 Jun 1942

Bedford, MA, 1 Jul28 Sep 1942

Egypt, 12 Nov 1942

Libya, 24 Jan 1943

Tunisia, 13 Mar 1943

Malta, c. 6 Jul 1943

Sicily, 18 Jul 1943

Southern Italy, 15 Sep 1943

Salsola, Italy, 5 Oct 1943

Madna Airfield, Italy, c. 19 Nov 1943

Capodichino, Italy, 16 Jan 1944

Pomigliano, Italy, 30 Apr 1944

Corsica, c. 11 Jun 1944

Southern France, c. 22 Aug 1944

Iesi, Italy, c. 5 Oct 1944

Fano, Italy, 5 Dec 1944

Cesenatico, Italy, 24 Mar 1945

Horsching, Austria, 26 Jul 1945-25 Jun 1947

Langley Field, VA, 25 Jun-15 Jul 1947

Scott AFB, IL, 1 Nov 1952-1 Jul 1959

Eglin AFB, FL. 12 Apr 1971-.

 

Aircraft.

P-40, 1942-1944

P-47, 1944-1947

F-51, 1952-1953

F-86, 1953-1959

Tested aircraft and weapon systems of a wide variety of aircraft, including the F-4, RF-4, F-15, F-16, and A-10, 1971-.

 

Operations.

Combat in MTO, 14 Mar 1943-7 May 1945.

Air defense in the U.S., 1952-1959.

 

Campaign Streamers.

World War II: Egypt-Libya; Tunisia; Sicily; Naples-Foggia; Anzio; Rhineland; Rome-Arno; Southern France; North Apennines; Po Valley; Air Combat, EAME Theater.

 

Decorations.

Distinguished Unit Citations: North Africa and Sicily, Mar-17 Aug 1943; Italy, 16-20 Apr 1945. Air Force Outstanding Unit Award: 1 Jan 1984-31 May 1985.

 

Emblems:

 

85th Fighter Squadron 1942 to 1947

 

AIRCRAFT MARKING: On a light blue disc, a death's head facing to right proper, winged at base of skull yellow, superimposed on a white cloud bank and emitting speed lines in black; in base a small white cloud formation.

SIGNIFCANCE; The insignia is symbolic of the winged death and destruction which the 85th Fighter Squadron will carry to the enemy. 

 

 

85th Fighter Interceptor Squadron 1952 to 1959

 

SQUADRON EMBLEM: On a disc a. futuristic aircraft red and white, passing through a light blue background into a dark blue background, in front of a snarling cat black, eye white, whiskers white, nose tipped white, tongue red.

SIGNIFICANCE: The futuristic aircraft denotes the growth of the Air Force in technical advancement for greater capability in the fighter mission. The flight path of the aircraft through the light blue background into the dark blue background depicts the all weather capabilities of the unit. The poised and snarling cat is symbolic of the ferocity of attack and twenty four hour vigilance of the squadron.

 

  

 

85th Test & Evaluation Squadron 1971-   

          

Emblem: on a disc divided per saltire, Light Blue, checky Black and White, Blue, checky Black and White a sword bendwise sinister point to base blade per Pale Blue and Light Blue, grip Red detailed Black guard and pommel Blue, surmounted by a Yellow lightning flash bendwise fimbriated Black, in chief a Yellow polestar shaded Blue radiant of six and in base an arc of Red arch embattled and crenelled Yellow all within a narrow Black border. Approved on 8 Aug 1984 (AFMPC 84-0099); and slightly modified on 26 May 1987 (DFSC 87-10421); replaced emblem approved on 7 Aug 1953.

 

 

 

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