Marine Air Control Group 28 [MACG-28]
Marine Air Control Group-28 was initially activated in January 1956 at Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point, North Carolina. At the time of activation, it was designated as the Marine Wing Headquarters Group of the Second Marine Aircraft Wing. Its composition at that time included Headquarters and Headquarters Squadron-2 and Marine Air Control Squadron (MACS) - 7. The fledgling organization began to grow when in 1963 it was administratively assigned the Third Light Anti Aircraft Missile (LAAM) Battalion. Its growth was short lived however, for in 1965 MACS-7 was directed to deploy to Okinawa, Japan and subsequently saw duty in the Republic of Vietnam. Upon completing its service in Vietnam, MACS-7 was reassigned for duty with the Third Marine Aircraft Wing at El Toro, California.
In May of 1966, the Group was again re-designated; it would now be known as Marine Air Control Group-2. It was this year that the Third LAAM Battalion became administratively and operationally under the control of the Group. Re-designation occurred once more when in 1967 the Group was assigned its present day identification as Marine Air Control Group-28.
With its new designation cane additional support and control organizations in the form of Marine Air Support Squadron-1 and Marine Air Control Squadron-5. MACS-5 was activated and assigned to support Fleet Marine Force Aviation operation at Marine Corps Air Station Beaufort, South Carolina. MCAS Beaufort has remained the home of MACS-5 since its activation. The Group's expanding support and control responsibilities were examined and in 1971 it was determined that the critical function of Wing communications would be added to that of the Group's communications capabilities. This consolidation joined the organizational colors of Marine Wing Communications Squadron-28 with those of H&HS-28, Third LAAM Battalion, MASS-1, MACS-5, and MACS-6 under the senior banner of MACG-28.
In 1973, the capability of a shoulder-launched missile was introduced into the Group. A Forward Area Air Defense (FAAD) platoon was activated and placed under the administrative and operational control of the Third LAAM Battalion. The activation of the FAAD platoon would enhance air defense of aviation vital areas and introduce a close-in air defense capability for maneuver units or security missions. April 1976 introduced the consolidation of air traffic control assets within the Marine Air Wing and a new squadron. Marine Air Traffic Control Squadron-28, joined ranks as the newest member of the Marine Air Command and Control System.
The tactical advantages, increased capabilities and innovative employment offered by shoulder-launched missiles led to the creation of a FAAD Battery. This enhanced capability was formally introduced in October 1983 as the Second Forward Area Air Defense Battery stood-up and took its place in the organizational structure of MACG-23.
The intervening years, since its inception, brought minor changes to the Air Control Group organizational structure. It participated in the unit rotation program during the 60s and 70s and interchanged MACS organizations with the First Marine Aircraft Wing on a yearly basis. The mission of Marine Air Control Group 28 [MACG-28] is to coordinate all aspects of air command and control and air defense within the marine aircraft wing as well as provide the command and staff functions for the macg commander when deployed as part of the Aviation Combat Element (ACE) of the marine air-ground task force (MAGTF).
MACG-28 units are located aboard MCAS Cherry Point, NC, MCAS New River, NC, MCAS Beaufort, SC and MCALF Bogue Field, NC. Additionally, MACG-28 Marines deploy with each East Coast Marine Expeditionary Unit - 22d, 24th and 26th MEUs.
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