77th Weapons Squadron

77th Bombardment Squadron

B-1B Lancer from Dyess AFB, Texas performing a fly-by during a firepower demonstration
Active 1940 – present
Country  United States
Branch  United States Air Force
Type Squadron
Role Advanced B-1 Lancer Training
Part of USAF Weapons School
Garrison/HQ Dyess Air Force Base, Texas

World War II

  • Aleutian Campaign
  • Asia-Pacific Theater

Vietnam War
Distinguished Unit Citation

Air Force Outstanding Unit Award with Combat "V" Device

Air Force Outstanding Unit Award (12x)

Republic of Vietnam Gallantry Cross with Palm
77th Weapons Squadron emblem (approved 17 May 1997)[1]
77th Bomb Squadron emblem

The 77th Weapons Squadron is a United States Air Force unit assigned to the USAF Weapons School, stationed at Dyess Air Force Base, Texas. The 77th is a Geographically Separated Unit of the 57th Wing, stationed at Nellis Air Force Base, Nevada. The mission of the squadron is to provide B-1 Lancer instructional flying.

The unit activated on 15 January 1941 at Fort Douglas, Utah. After combat operations in the Pacific theater during World War II, the 77th contributed to America’s nuclear deterrent during the Cold War and formed the backbone of the Air Force’s B-52 force during the Vietnam War.


The 77th provides weapons training to B-1B Lancer squadrons at Dyess Air Force Base, TX and Ellsworth AFB, SD.


World War II

The squadron was activated in January 1941 as a Northwest Air District medium bomber squadron, equipped with a mixture of B-18 Bolos, PT-17 Stearman trainers and early model B-26 Marauders. Upon completion of training, it was assigned to the new Elmendorf Field, near Anchorage, Alaska; being one of the first Air Corps units assigned to the Alaska Territory. After the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, the squadron flew antisubmarine patrols over the Gulf of Alaska.

When the Japanese invaded the Aleutian Islands in June 1942, the squadron was reassigned to Fort Glenn Army Airfield on Adak Island; and began combat missions over the captured islands of Kiska and Attu. Flew combat missions with B-26 Marauders and later B-25 Mitchell medium bombers during the Aleutian Campaign, remaining in Alaska until the end of World War II in 1945 when the squadron personnel were demobilized and the unit inactivated as a paper unit in early of November 1945.

Cold War

Reactivated as a Strategic Air Command B-29 Superfortress squadron in 1946, being trained in the midwest then reassigned to Alaska in late 1946. Mission changed from strategic bombardment training to strategic reconnaissance and mapping; engaging in very long range reconnaissance missions in the Bering Straits; North Pacific coast and Arctic Ocean coastline of the Soviet Union. Squadron performed charting and other mapping missions, most likely including ferret and ELINT missions, possibly overflying Soviet airspace.

Squadron returned to the Continental United States in 1947, being equipped with B-36 Peacemaker strategic bombers, both in the bomber and strategic reconnaissance versions. Undertook strategic bombardment training missions on a global scale, including strategic reconnaissance missions with the RB-36s until the phaseout of the B-36 from SAC in 1957.

Re-equipped with B-52D Stratofortresses and stood nuclear alert and conducted global strategic bombardment training missions until 1966. Began rotational deployments to Andersen AFB, Guam where squadron began flying conventional strategic bombardment Arc Light missions over Indochina (1966–1970). Converted to B-52G in 1971 and returned to nuclear alert status; upgrading to B-52H in 1977. Received first production B-1B Lancers in 1985 and maintained nuclear alert until taken off alert after the end of the Cold War in 1991. Performed strategic bombardment training until inactivated in 1997 as part of the drawdown of the USAF.

Modern era

Organization organized as the USAF Weapons School B-1 Division on 28 August 1992 at Nellis Air Force Base, Nevada. Replaced by the 77th Weapons Squadron in 2003. It provides training to B-1 aircrews at Dyess.


Activated on 15 January 1941
Inactivated on 5 November 1945
Activated on 4 August 1946
Redesignated 77th Bombardment Squadron, Medium on 28 May 1948
Redesignated 77th Bombardment Squadron, Heavy on 16 May 1949
Redesignated 77th Strategic Reconnaissance Squadron, Photographic on 1 April 1950
Redesignated 77th Strategic Reconnaissance Squadron, Heavy on 16 July 1950
Redesignated 77th Bombardment Squadron, Heavy on 1 October 1955
Redesignated 77th Bomb Squadron on 1 September 1991
Inactivated on 31 March 1995
Inactivated on 19 September 2002
Activated on 3 February 2003[1]



  • Salt Lake City Army Air Base, Utah, 15 January 1941
  • Gowen Field, Utah, 4 June - 14 December 1941
  • Elmendorf Field, Alaska, 29 December 1941
Air echelon operated from Fort Glenn Army Air Field, Alaska beginning 30 May 1942
Air echelon operated from Adak Army Air Field, Alaska, beginning 12 December 1942
Air echelon operated from Amchitka Army Air Field, Alaska, beginning 9 March 1943
Air echelon operated from Attu Airfield, Alaska, beginning 10 July 1943

  • Amchitka Army Airfield]], Alaska, 11 September 1943
  • Attu Airfield, Alaska, 11 February 1944 – 19 October 1945
  • Fort Lawton, Washington, 29 October-5 November 1945
  • Grand Island Army Air Field, Nebraska, 4 August-6 October 1946
  • Elmendorf Field, Alaska, 20 October 1946 – 24 April 1947
  • Rapid City Army Air Field (later Rapid City Air Force Base; Ellsworth Air Force Base), South Dakota, 17 April 1947 (air echelon), 3 May 1947 (ground echelon) - 31 March 1995
  • Ellsworth Air Force Base, South Dakota, 1 April 1997 – 19 September 2002
  • Dyess Air Force Base, Texas, 3 February 2003 – present[1]


B-52D Stratofortress, 1957-1971
B-52G Stratofortress, 1971-1977
B-52H Stratofortress, 1977-1985

See also


 This article incorporates public domain material from the Air Force Historical Research Agency website http://www.afhra.af.mil/.

  1. 1 2 3 4 5 Warnick, A. Timothy (December 20, 2007). "Factsheet 77 Weapons Squadron (ACC)". Air Force Historical Research Agency. Retrieved September 9, 2016.

External links

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