5th Army Air Forces WW2 Patch

5th Air Force

5thaf.org is a project of the Army Air Corps Library and Museum. Volunteers are transcribing servicemen names and their awards from General Orders that we are publishing on this website for enthusiasts, families and researchers of genealogy and World War II history. The names on this honor roll of men assigned to units of the 5th Air Force is not a complete list of all who served with the 5th, however, we are attempting to locate as many documents that have survived as possible. Sources of material include the US National Archives, Air Force Historical Research Agency and the records donated by individual servicemen and their families. We hope you will find this information useful and enjoyable. We are accepting volunteers help in this very large World War II project as we preserve this history and honor service.

Constituted as Philippine Department AF on 16 Aug 1941. Activated in the Philippines on 20 Sep 1941. Redesignated Far East AF in Oct 1941, and Fifth AF in Feb 1942. This air force lost most of its men and equipment in the defense of the Philippines after 7 Dec 1941. Later in Dec 1941 headquarters and some crews and planes moved to Australia, and in Jan 1942 they were sent to Java to help delay Japanese advances in the Netherlands Indies. The Fifth did not function as an air force for some time after Feb 1942 (the AAF organizations in the Southwest Pacific being under the control of American-British-Dutch-Australian Command and later Allied Air Forces). Headquarters was remanned in Sep 1942 and assumed control of AAF organizations in Australia and New Guinea. The Fifth participated in operations that stopped the Japanese drive in Papua, recovered New Guinea, neutralized islands in the Bismarck Archipelago and the Netherlands East Indies, and liberated the Philippines. When the war ended in Aug 1945 elements of the Fifth were moving to the Ryukyus for the invasion of Japan.

World War 2 Commanders

Brig Gen Henry B Clagett, 20 Sep 1941 Maj Gen Lewis H Brereton, Oct 1941-Feb 1942 Lt Gen George C Kenney, 3 Sep 1942 Lt Gen Ennis C Whitehead, 15 Jun 1944

Headquarters: Nichols Field, Luzon, 20 Sep 1941; Darwin, Australia, Dec 1941; Java, Jan-Feb 1942; Brisbane, Australia, 3 Sep 1942; Nadzab, New Guinea, 15 Jun 1944; Owl, Schouten Islands, 10 Aug 1944; Leyte, c. 20 Nov 1944; Mindoro, Jan 1945; Clark Field, Luzon, Apr 1945; Okinawa, Jul 1945; Irumagawa, Japan, c. 25 Sep 1945.

Commands. V Bomber Command: 1941-1946. V Fighter Command: 1942-1946.


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We are accepting donations in the form of uniforms, medals, ribbons, patches, photos, memorabilia, papers, gear and equipment.

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Are you an AAC, AAF or USAF Veteran, family member, historian or WW2 enthusiast? We Need YOU! Contact us today to see how you can help the Army Air Corps Library and Museum, a Texas Not-For-Profit Corporation.

We need your help! We are looking for volunteers that can help us with the following tasks.

(1) Typing and Transcriptionists: One of our big projects is extracting data from the thousands of documents we have and putting this data into a database where we can display the information on a website such as this one. (2) Photography and Document Scanning.