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321st Missile Squadron

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Title: 321st Missile Squadron  
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Subject: Francis E. Warren Air Force Base, 90th Operations Group, 742d Missile Squadron, 576th Flight Test Squadron, LGM-30 Minuteman
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321st Missile Squadron

321st Missile Squadron
LGM-30G Minuteman III test launch at Vandenburg AFB, California
Active 15 April 1942 - 27 January 1946
1 July 1947 - 6 September 1948
2 January 1951 - 20 June 1960
9 April 1964 - Present
Country  United States
Branch  United States Air Force
Type Squadron
Role Intercontinental ballistic missile
Part of 90th Operations Group
Air Force Global Strike Command
Garrison/HQ F. E. Warren Air Force Base
World War II (Asia-Pacific Theater)
Distinguished Unit Citation (3x)

Air Force Outstanding Unit Award (12x)

Philippine Presidential Unit Citation
Lt Col Cynthia Gundersen
321st Missile Squadron emblem
B-24D-170-CO Liberator 42-72956 on Mission to Wewak, New Guinea, 24 February 1944

The 321st Missile Squadron (321 MS) is a United States Air Force unit. It is assigned to the 90th Operations Group, stationed at F.E. Warren AFB, Wyoming. The 321 MS is equipped with the LGM-30G Minuteman III Intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM), with a mission of nuclear deterrence.


World War II

Activated in spring 1942 as a B-26 Marauder medium bomber squadron. Trained under Third Air Force in southeastern United States. Reassigned to Michigan where squadron received Very Long Range (VLR) B-24D Liberator heavy bombers manufactured by Ford specifically for extended length missions over the Pacific.

Squadron deployed first to Hawaii and trained on the heavy bombers for combat and long over ocean navigation and bombardment missions under Seventh Air Force. Squadron deployed to Fifth Air Force in Southwest Pacific Area (SWPA), assembling in northern Queensland, Australia then moving to operational base in Papua New Guinea. From airfields in New Guinea, the squadron carried out long-range strategic bombardment of enemy targets in New Guinea, Dutch East Indies, Philippine Islands and other areas from bases as ground forces sized them during MacArthur's island hopping campaign. Bombarded enemy targets on Okinawa; Iwo Jima; Formosa and eastern China, eventually being stationed on Ie Shima preparing for VLR bombardment operations over the Japanese Home Islands when the Japanese Capitulation occurred in August 1945. Squadron personnel demobilized in Okinawa and Philippines, aircraft sent to reclamation during fall of 1945. Inactivated as a paper unit in Early 1946.

Strategic Air Command

The squadron was active but unmanned from, 1 July 1947-1 September 1948. Brought to operational status under Strategic Air Command in 1951, being equipped with RB-29 Superfortresses at Fairchild AFB, Washington. Moved to Forbes AFB, Kansas shortly afterward and conducted operational training from, 1 June 1951-September 1952, replacement training from, 1 June 1951-1 September 1953, and. SHORAN training from, 10 November 1952-30 Novovember 1953 Replaced the propeller-driven RB-29s with new RB-47E Stratojet swept-wing reconnaissance bombers in 1954, capable of flying at high subsonic speeds and primarily designed for penetrating the airspace of the Soviet Union. Flew many long-range clandestine missions with the RB-47, flying many ferret missions around the periphery of Soviet territory, and sometimes inside on penetration flights to map planned routes for B-52s if combat missions over the Soviet Union ever became necessary. Began performing RB-47 crew training from, c. 1 January 1959-20 June 1960. Began phasing down RB-47 missions in 1959 when the vulnerability of the aircraft to Soviet air defenses became evident, was inactivated on 20 June 1960.

Intercontinental Ballistic Missile Squadron

Reactivated on 9 April 1964 as an ICBM squadron assigned to the 90th Missile Wing at Francis E. Warren AFB, Wyoming. Initially equipped with 50 LGM-30B Minuteman Is in early 1964. Upgraded to LGM-30G Minuteman III in 1973/1974, has maintained ICBMs on alert ever since. [1] Its current commander is Lt Col Matthew Dillow.


Emblem of the SAC 321st Strategic Recon Squadron
World War II 321st Bombardment Squadron emblem
  • Constituted as 321 Bombardment Squadron (Heavy) on 28 Jan 1942
Activated on 15 Apr 1942
Re-designated as 321 Bombardment Squadron, Heavy, on 6 March 1944
Inactivated on 27 Jan 1946
  • Re-designated as 321 Bombardment Squadron, Very Heavy, on 11 Jun 1947
Activated on 1 Jul 1947
Inactivated on 6 Sep 1948
  • Re-designated as 321 Bombardment Squadron, Medium, on 20 Dec 1950
Activated on 2 Jan 1951
Re-designated as 321 Strategic Reconnaissance Squadron, Medium, on 16 Jun 1952
Discontinued on 20 Jun 1960
  • Re-designated as 321 Strategic Missile Squadron (ICBM-Minuteman) on 16 Sep 1963
Organized on 9 Apr 1964
Re-designated as 321 Missile Squadron on 1 Sep 1991


Attached to 90th Strategic Reconnaissance Wing, 16 Feb 1951-15 Jun 1952


Aircraft and missiles

LGM-30 Minuteman Missile Alert and Launch Facilities
321st Missile Squadron Launch Facilities
Missile Alert Facilities (K-O flights, each controlling 10 missiles) are located as follows:
K-01 6.8 mi S of Dix NE,
L-01 21.9 mi N of Stoneham CO,
M-01 12.1 mi NE of Stoneham CO,
N-01 1.7 mi N of Raymer CO,
O-01 11.8 mi E of Grover CO,

See also


 This article incorporates public domain material from websites or documents of the Air Force Historical Research Agency.

  1. ^ AFHRA 321 MS Page

External links

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