VI BOMBER COMMAND
IN DEFENSE OF THE PANAMA CANAL
1941 - 45
Areas of Interest:
VI Bombardment Command History:
6th BGp (Heavy)
3rd BS (Heavy)
29th BS (Heavy)
74th BS (Heavy)
397th BS (Heavy)
9th BGp (Heavy)
1st BS (Heavy)
5th BS (Heavy)
99th BS (Heavy)
430th BS (Heavy)
25th BGp (Medium)
12th BS (Medium)
35th BS (Medium)
59th BS (Medium)
417th BS (Medium)
40th BGp (Heavy)
25th BS (Heavy)
44th BS (Heavy)
45th BS (Heavy)
395th BS (Heavy)
Units Attached to VI Bomber Command
10th BS (Heavy)
15th BS (Light)
40th Bombardment Group
25th Bombardment Squadron (Heavy)
Organized as the 25th Aero Squadron on October 1, 1921, and redesignated 25th Bombardment Squadron on January 25, 1923; and 25th Bombardment Squadron (Medium) on December 6, 1939, the 25th Bombardment Squadron (Medium) was assigned to the 6th Bombardment Group (Heavy) (formerly the 3rd Observation Group, 6th Group (Observation.), 6th Group (Composite), and 6th Composite Group on February 1, 1940, with station at France Field, Canal Zone.
The 25th Bombardment Squadron (Medium) was redesignated 25th Bombardment Squadron (Heavy) on November 20, 1940.
The 25th Bombardment Squadron made a temporary change of Station from France Field, CZ, to Rio Hato Air Base, Rio Hato, R. de P., on December 8, 1941. The personnel strength of the 25th Bombardment Squadron at that time was 13 officers and 195 enlisted men. The assigned aircraft consisted of three B-18's.
The 25th Bombardment Squadron remained at Rio Hato until it made another temporary change of Station to Salinas, Ecuador on January 21, 1942 (paragraph 4, Special Order Number 4, Headquarters VI Bomber Command, January 21, 1942).
The 25th Squadron sent an air echelon of 80 officers and enlisted men to Salinas, employing group tactical aircraft to effect the movement.
Twenty-one (21) members of the 25th Bombardment Squadron departed from Balboa, by water transportation, for Salinas, Ecuador.
Twenty-five (25) of 78 recruits assigned to the 6th Bombardment Group were allotted to the 25th Bombardment Squadron
Thirteen (13) LB-30's had arrived at the Group intermittently since March 15, and were assigned to the 25th Bombardment Squadron at Salinas, Ecuador.
Ninety (90) enlisted men were attached to the 25th Bombardment Squadron from other units of the Group. Transportation to the 25th was exclusively by tactical aircraft.
The 25th Bombardment Group (Heavy) was detached from VI Bomber Command, and attached to the VI Fighter Command in June 1942.
The Hq. & Hq. Squadron of the 6th Bombardment Group was disbanded, and 17 of the officers and enlisted men were dispersed to the 25th Bombardment Squadron at Salinas, Ecuador, by tactical aircraft during routine patrols and the newly assigned B-24's on the first. part of September.
The 25th Bombardment Squadron had 333 personnel, and eight four-engine aircraft assigned on August31, 1942.
The personnel of the 29th Bombardment Squadron of the 40th Bombardment Group replaced 25th Bombardment Squadron personnel. Group on December 1, 1942. At the time of the transfer, the strength of the "old" 25th was 294, consisting of 33 officer and 261 enlisted men; and six B-24s and one other aircraft were assigned.
On December 25, 1942, the 25th in Salinas had a total of 340 personnel, seven aircraft (six 4-engine and 1 other).
The 25th Bombardment Squadron was reassigned from the 6th Bombardment Group (Heavy) to the 40th Bombardment Group (Heavy) on May 12, 1943.
The 25th Bombardment Squadron departed Salinas, Ecuador, for Howard Field, CZ, on May 22, 1943, arriving at Howard Field on the same date.
The departing Headquarters 40th Bombardment Group held a review and presentation of Air Medals on June 7 (General Orders No. 41, Headquarters Sixth Air Force). Colonel D. K. Mooney, Commanding Officer of the 40th Bombardment Group (Heavy), made the presentations.
The 25th Bombardment Squadron remained in casual status from the date of its arrival at Howard Field, awaiting transfer to the United States for assignment. While awaiting orders, it was attached to the 10th Statistical Control Unit for administration, quarters and rations. The 25th Bombardment Squadron, along with the other tactical units of the 40th Group, left Howard Field by truck convoy on June 15, to board Army Transport "George Washington" at Balboa, Canal Zone, bound for San Francisco, California. The "George Washington" arrived at San Francisco, California, on June 25. The 25th disembarked at San Francisco, California, and took up temporary Station at Fort McDowell, California, remaining at Fort McDowell until June 28, 1943, when it entrained for Pratt, Kansas, where it arrived July 1, 1943.