132nd Fighter Wing [132nd FW]
The 132d Fighter Wing, located at the Des Moines International Airport, can trace its roots back to February, 1941 with the establishment of the 124th Observation Squadron. The unit at that time had 110 men, 27 officers (15 pilots), and 5 aircraft.
Over the last 54 years, the 132d Fighter Wing has participated in numerous actions including World War II, the Korean Conflict, and many of the support functions of Desert Shield/Desert Storm.
The unit first flew the P-51 fighter aircraft, and entered the jet age in 1953 with the F-80. Several conversions followed with the unit flying the F-84, F-86, F-89, F-100, and the A-7 aircraft. The latest conversion to the F-16C aircraft occurred in 1992.
The unit has received numerous awards, including five Air Force Outstanding Unit Awards, and has participated in exercises and deployments worldwide. The 132d also played a key role in the recovery efforts during the 1993 flooding in the Des Moines area, providing logistics and personnel support to the relief operations.
In its 2005 BRAC Recommendations, DoD recommended to realign Great Falls International Airport AGS, MT by distributing the 120th Fighter Wing's F-16s to the 132d Fighter Wing, Des Moines IAP AGS (three aircraft) and to another installation. Although Des Moines (137) was somewhat lower in military value ranking than Great Falls (117), DoD claimed that the realignment to Des Moines would create a more effective unit of 18 aircraft.
Another recommendation called for Springfield-Beckley Municipal Airport AGS, OH to be realigned. It would distribute the 178th Fighter Wing's F-16 aircraft to the 132d Fighter Wing, Des Moines IAP AGS, IA (nine aircraft) and two other installations. While not currently tasked with a Homeland Defense role, Des Moines (137) was located within the specified response timing criteria of a Homeland Security site of interest. The 132d Fighter Wing, Des Moines IAP AGS would assume a role in the air sovereignty mission.
DoD also recommended to realign Richmond International Airport AGS, VA. It would Distribute the 192d Fighter Wing's F-16s to the 132d Fighter Wing, Des Moines IAP AGS, IA (six aircraft) and other installations. In the same recommendation, DoD would realign Des Moines IAP AGS. The F-16 aircraft currently assigned to the 132d Fighter Wing at Des Moines would be redistributed to the 180th Fighter Wing, Toledo Express Airport AGS, OH (nine aircraft) and 138th Fighter Wing, Tulsa IAP AGS, OK (six aircraft). The F-16s from Richmond (49) would be distributed to Des Moines (137) to enable the capability to support the homeland defense Air Sovereignty Alert mission. Des Moines' F-16s would be distributed to Toledo (123) and Tulsa (114) to support the Homeland Defense Air Sovereignty Alert mission and to consolidate the precision-guided weapon employment capability that exists in the Air National Guard.
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