Museum honors oldest flying squadron in Texas
By Master Sgt. Sean Cowher, 147th Attack Wing
/ Published May 25, 2017
Ellington Field Joint Reserve Base, Texas --
One hundred years ago a group of 150 military personnel at San Antonio’s Kelly Field stood up the 111th Aero Squadron, marking the beginning of the now famous moniker, The Texans. As the second oldest flying unit in the United Sates military, the 111th has a rich and distinguished history. The unit has been called to action in every major conflict the U.S. has been involved in since World War II.
On May 20, 2017, the 111th was honored with an induction into the Texas Aviation Hall of Fame during a Gala at the Lone Star Flight Museum in Houston, Texas. The Texas Aviation Hall of Fame was established in 1997 to honor famous aviators who are Texans and famous Texans who are aviators. One of the other honorees this year is former 111th pilot and President of the United States, George W. Bush.
Lt. Col. David Peck, commander of the 111th, accepted on his units behalf. “We are profoundly honored to be in the company of such legendary figures as those enshrined in the Texas Aviation Hall of Fame,” the colonel said. “For a century the men and women of the 111th have proudly answered the call to arms for our nation in times of war, and rendered aid to our fellow Texans in times of crisis. These are duties that the Aces hold sacred and when called upon we will continue to perform them with pride.”
The 111th has changed and adapted throughout the past 100 years and continues to do so again as the squadron transitions to a new aircraft, the MQ-9 Reaper, a remotely piloted aircraft.
Judging from its past, its present and its plans for the future, the 111th Attack Squadron stands to remain an essential part of the Texas Military Department, Air National Guard and U.S. Air Force.