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SEYMOUR JOHNSON AIR FORCE BASE HISTORY

Posted 8/2/2006 Printable Fact Sheet

Seymour Johnson AFB was established five months after the United States entered World War II when the War Department approved the establishment of a technical school two miles southeast of Goldsboro. Seymour Johnson Field was activated on June 12, 1942, as Headquarters, Technical School, Army Air Forces Technical Training Command.

The base is named in honor of U.S. Navy Lt. Seymour A. Johnson, a native of Goldsboro. Johnson, a test pilot, was killed in an aircraft crash near Norbeck, Md., March 5, 1941.

In June 1943, a secondary mission was added which included preparation of officers and men for overseas duty. The unit was known as the Provisional Overseas Replacement Training Center.

Seymour Johnson Field received a third mission in September 1943: to provide basic military training for cadets preparing to become technical officers in the Army Air Corps. The 75th Training Wing was established to conduct the program through its Aviation Cadet Pre-Training la k- School.

The 326th Fighter Group arrived in October 1943 and in January 1944 began training replacement pilots for P-47 Thunderbolt aircraft. In April of that year, basic training of P-47 pilots became the primary mission of Seymour Johnson Field.

The 326th Fighter Group arrived in October 1943 and in January 1944 began training replacement pilots for P-47 Thunderbolt aircraft. In April of that year, basic training of P-47 pilots became the primary mission of Seymour Johnson Field.

At the end of WWII in Europe, Seymour Johnson was designated as a central assembly station for processing and training troops being reassigned in the continental United States and Pacific theater of operations. This function was discontinued in September 1945 and the field became an Army-Air Force Separation Center.

Seymour Johnson Field was deactivated in May 1946.

In late 1952, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers arrived and demolished old buildings and began construction of new ones. Led by Goldsboro mayor Scott B. Berkeley Sr., local community leaders began a campaign to have the installation reopened. The efforts were successful, and on April 1, 1956, Seymour Johnson Air Force Base was reactivated as a Tactical Air Command base. Three months later, the 83rd Fighter-Day Wing was assigned to the base as the primary unit. The 4th Fighter Wing replaced the 83rd on Dec. 8, 1957.

Since reopening, the base has been home to B-52 bombers, KC-10 and KC-135 tankers from Strategic Air Command and F-4 and F-16 fighters from the Michigan Air National Guard.

Seymour Johnson AFB was annexed by the city of Goldsboro on Feb. 7, 1977. Construction of a minimum-security Federal Prison facility was completed in 1991. Inmates at the facility supplement the work force, helping to maintain the base grounds.


Point of Contact
4th Fighter Wing Public Affairs, 1510 Wright Brothers Ave., Suite 200, Seymour Johnson AFB, NC 27531-2468; Com'l: (919) 722-0027, DSN 722-0027.





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