#1677 77 Fighter Squadron F-16CM print

77 Fighter Squadron F-16CM print
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£10.00 €11.67 $12.66
43.8 cm x 29.2 cm
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F-16CM Fighting Falcon
77 FS, 20 FW
Shaw AFB, South Carolina
US - Air Force
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Squadron Prints Lithograph No. 1677 - 91-0353, F-16CM Fighting Falcon, 77th Fighter Squadron, 20th Fighter Wing, Shaw AFB, South Carolina.

The World’s Greatest Fighter Squadron In The World was originally organized on 20 February 1918 as the 77th Aero Squadron at Rich Field, Waco, Texas, only to be demobilized in November of the same year following the end of World War I. It reactivated and consolidated with the 77th Observation Squadron in October 1927. In 1929, the Squadron was redesignated the 77th Pursuit Squadron and reorganized at Mather Field, California. Between 1930 and 1943, the Squadron moved to various locations across the USA, flying several different aircraft types, including the P-26, P-36, P-38, P-39 and P-40. In January 1943, the Squadron settled at March Field, just in time for it to be reassigned to England and the European Theatre of Operations during World War II. The 77th, now designated a Fighter Squadron, arrived at King’s Cliffe in Northamptonshire, England in August 1943, equipped with the P-38 Lightning. The Squadron began flying combat operations in November 1943, conducting bomber escort duties, ground attack and air combat missions before flying its last mission of the war on 25 April 1945. The Squadron returned to the United States after the war and was deactivated in October 1945. The 77th Fighter Squadron was reactivated in July 1946 at Biggs Field in El Paso, Texas and later that year moved to Shaw Field, South Carolina. The Squadron moved to Langley Air Force Base, Virginia in November 1951 becoming a Fighter-Bomber Squadron and transitioned to the F-84D and F-84G Thunderjet. The 77th Fighter-Bomber Squadron returned to the United Kingdom in May 1952, this time to RAF Wethersfield in Essex, and in doing so become an integral part of the United States Air Forces in Europe Command. The F-84G Thunderjet was phased out by June 1955 to be replaced by the swept-wing F-84F Thunderstreak. In 1957, the Squadron relinquished the F-84 for the F-100 Super Sabre. In July 1958, the Squadron was yet again redesignated, becoming the 77th Tactical Fighter Squadron and flew the “Hun”, as it was nicknamed, until 1970 in support of its commitment to NATO. The Squadron, together with the other component units of the 20th Tactical Fighter Wing, moved to RAF Upper Heyford in Oxfordshire in 1970 and soon after began conversion to the F-111E Aardvark. By February 1971 the last of the F-100s had been returned to the United States, and in November of the same year the F-111 was declared operationally ready. From October 1991, the unit become known as the 77th Fighter Squadron. After over two decades flying the F-111E from Upper Heyford, the 77th Fighter Squadron was deactivated in October 1993, ending a significant chapter in the Squadron’s history. The 77th Fighter Squadron was reactivated once more in January 1994 at its present home at Shaw Air Force Base, South Carolina, equipped with the F-16C Fighting Falcon. Between 1997 and 2002 the “Gamblers” deployed to the Middle East on several occasions flying combat missions over Iraq in support of Operations NORTHERN WATCH and SOUTHERN WATCH as well as supporting Operation DESERT FOX. Within that same time frame, the Squadron also supported NATO forces during Operation ALLIED FORCE in 1999. In 2003 and in 2010, the Squadron once again deployed to the Middle East in support of Operation IRAQI FREEDOM. In 2011, it deployed in support of the first ever Global Response Force tasking where they enforced the Libyan No-Fly Zone during Operation UNIFIED PROTECTOR. Between October 2012 and May 2013, the 77th Fighter Squadron deployed to Afghanistan in support of Operation ENDURING FREEDOM providing close air support to Coalition Forces. In October 2014, the Squadron deployed to the Middle East in support of Operation INHERENT RESOLVE, whilst more recently in October 2020, the Gamblers deployed eighteen F-16Cs to Saudi Arabia, again in support of Operation INHERENT RESOLVE.