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|443d Airlift Wing|
443d Military Airlift Wing, Training Patch
|Branch||United States Air Force|
|Role||Heavy Airlift Training|
|Garrison/HQ||Military Airlift Command|
The 443d Airlift Wing is an inactive unit of the United States Air Force. Its last assignment was with Air Mobility Command, being stationed at Altus Air Force Base, Oklahoma. It was inactivated on October 1, 1992.
In 1949, the 443d Troop Carrier Wing, Medium was established and trained as a Reserve troop-carrier wing under supervision of the 2596th Air Force Reserve Training Center, June 1949 - April 1951.
The 443d was brought to active duty at Donaldson AFB, South Carolina on August 9, 1951, as a training wing by Tactical Air Command. For almost two years, the 443d participated in tactical exercises in operations, training troop-carrier aircrews using C-46 Commandos for assignment to the Far East, and worked closely with other troop-carrier groups to test and evaluate new troop-carrier doctrine and procedures. With the nearing end of the Korean War, the 443d was inactivated on January 8, 1953.
In January 1966, Military Airlift Command (MAC) reactivated the 443d at Tinker AFB, Oklahoma, replacing the inactivated Military Air Transport Service 1707th Air Transport Wing, Heavy. The 443d became the primary USAF wing charged with training air and ground crews of C-124 Globemaster II and the new C-141 Starlifter heavy transports, while simultaneously maintaining a capability to perform airlift operations worldwide.
With the retirement of the prop-driven C-124 Globemaster II from active service, training diminished in 1967 and ceased in 1968, being replaced by training air and ground crews on the new C-5 Galaxy, a very heavy-lift transport, in 1969. The wing moved from Tinker AFB, Oklahoma to Altus AFB, Oklahoma, in 1969. The wing performed this training mission until 1992 when C-5 and C-141 training was consolidated after the end of the Cold War.
Air Mobility Command reorganized Air Force Airlift units in 1992, and the 443d was inactivated on October 1, 1992, as part of the Air Force Heritage program, where notable units were retained and reassigned after the Cold War.
The new 97th Air Mobility Wing, a former Eighth Air Force World War II bombardment group, and later Strategic Air Command bomb wing, absorbed the personnel, equipment and aircraft of the 443d upon its inactivation in an administrative transfer.