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820th Base Defense Group


820th Base Defense Group

820th Base Defense Group
820th Base Defense Group emblem
Active 1968 – 1969
1997 – present
Country  United States of America
Branch  United States Air Force
Type Force Protection
Part of  Air Combat Command
 93d Air-Ground Operations Wing
Garrison/HQ Georgia
Engagements War in Afghanistan
Iraq War
Colonel Michael Ross Sr.
Colonel John Decknick, Colonel "TR" Derry, Colonel Paul Kasuda
A airman from the 823rd Base Defense Squadron receives his Ranger tab after completing Ranger school in 2011.

The 820th Base Defense Group is a Air Force Specialty Codes with an airborne capability. The group provides the expeditionary Air Force's only worldwide deployable, "first-in", fully integrated, multidisciplined, highly qualified, self-sustaining force protection capability.


  • Subordinate units 1
  • Training 2
  • Lineage 3
    • Assignments 3.1
    • Stations 3.2
    • Unit awards 3.3
  • History 4
  • References 5
  • External links 6

Subordinate units

The Group has four subordinate units:

  • 820th Combat Operations Squadron [1]
  • 822d Base Defense Squadron [2]
  • 823d Base Defense Squadron [3]
  • 824th Base Defense Squadron [4]

The 820th COS is composed of medics, engineers, and communication specialists. The 820th BDG is different from other Security Forces Groups in that it is not on a rotational schedule, also known as Air Expeditionary Force (AEF). The concept of the 820th BDG is to have a high operations tempo and be ready to deploy to any location at a moment's notice for extended periods of time.

The Base Defense Squadrons are made up of Security Forces airmen.


Various Department of Defense schools are available to 820th airmen and may include: Airborne, Pathfinder, Army Sniper, Ranger, Air Assault, Special Reaction Team, the Close Precision Engagement Course (CPEC), Raven, Raven B UAV, and EMT.[5]


  • Established as 82 Combat Security Police Wing, and activated, on 5 March 1968.
Organized on 8 March 1968.
Inactivated on 31 December 1969.
Disestablished on 15 June 1983.
  • Reestablished, redesignated as 820 Security Forces Group, and activated, on 17 March 1997.
  • Redesignated as 820 Base Defense Group on 30 September 2010.



Unit awards

Award streamer Award Dates Notes
Air Force Outstanding Unit Award 8 March – 31 August 1968 [6]
Air Force Outstanding Unit Award 17 March 1997 – 30 September 1998 [6]
Air Force Outstanding Unit Award 1 October 1998 – 30 September 2000 [6]
Air Force Outstanding Unit Award w/Combat "V" Device 1 June 2002 – 31 May 2003 [6]
Air Force Outstanding Unit Award 1 June 2004 – 31 May 2006 [6]
Air Force Outstanding Unit Award 25 January 2008 – 31 May 2009 [6]


Since its re-activation in 1997,[7] the 820th SFG has deployed in support of Operations Desert Safeside, Southern Watch, Iraqi Freedom, Enduring Freedom, and Bright Star. It has deployed to locations such as Iraq, Djibouti, Egypt, Jordan, Kuwait, Oman, Afghanistan, Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan, and Pakistan.

The unit also deployed in a humanitarian assistance role to New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina.[8] Fifty members of the 820th SFG deployed to Port-au-Prince in response to the 2010 Haiti Earthquake to assist with security and humanitarian efforts.[9][10]

In August 2009 it was announced[11] that Airmen from the New York Air National Guard's 105th Security Forces Squadron from Stewart Air National Guard Base would support the 820th SFG with manpower for their deployments. Since then, Airmen from the 105th SFS have integrated with the 820th BDG for training and deployments.[12]

The 820th was redesignated from the 820th Security Forces Group to the 820th Base Defense Group in October 2010.

Some veterans, current troops and family members of the unit maintain the Safeside Association.[13] The volunteers maintain the history of the unit, provide periodic newsletters and organize an annual reunion at Moody Air Force Base.


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

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  11. ^ "NY Governor announces partnership with 820th". 
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External links

  • Fact Sheet
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