The 439th Airlift Wing is capable of providing worldwide air movement of troops, supplies, equipment and medical patients.
Strategically postured on almost 2,500 acres in western Massachusetts, Westover is the nation’s largest Air Force Reserve base. It is the closest fully operational military base to Europe, providing world-class support to military aircraft and people going on and coming back from missions overseas. Support units provide communications, engineering, logistical, medical and security requirements. The peacetime mission includes recruiting, training and supervision of personnel to ensure mission readiness. The wing is also responsible for the management of aircraft maintenance and all assigned Air Force combat support real property, equipment and supplies.
The 439th AW maintains and flies one of the world’s largest transport aircraft, the Lockheed C-5 Galaxy. The C-5 first arrived at Westover in October 1987. C-5s are the largest aircraft in the Air Force and specialize in missions involving outsized and oversized cargo that no other aircraft can carry. The C-5s are capable of carrying 270,000 pounds of cargo.
The C-5 cargo compartment can hold six Greyhound buses. It can also hold two U.S. Army M-1 battle tanks that weigh 60 tons each. At nearly 143 feet, the length of the C-5 cargo floor is longer than the distance of the Wright brothers’ first flight.
AIR FORCE RESERVE UNITS
The 439th Airlift Wing is a subordinate unit of Headquarters, 4th Air Force. It is organized under the objective wing structure with group commanders for operations, maintenance and mission support. The wing consists of headquarters staff, three groups, 16 squadrons and one flight. The wing is authorized about 2,600 personnel — 11 percent officers and 89 percent enlisted with a support staff of around 700 civilians. These figures include about 400 Air Reserve Technicians who manage reserve issues between unit training assemblies. Westover also has over 70 Active Guard/Reserves assigned to support our security forces, maintenance and EOD specialties.
The 439th Operations Group is composed of three squadrons and one flight. The units under this group include the 439th Operations Support Squadron, 337th Airlift Squadron, 439th Aeromedical Evacuation Squadron, and the 439th Airlift Control Flight.
The 439th Maintenance Group is composed of three squadrons. The units that fall under this group include the 439th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron, 439th Maintenance Squadron and 439th Maintenance Operations Squadron.
The 439th Mission Support Group is composed of seven squadrons and one flight. The group includes the 439th Force Support Squadron, 439th Civil Engineer Squadron, 439th Communications Squadron, 439th Logistics Readiness Squadron, 439th Security Forces Squadron, 42nd Aerial Port Squadron, 58th Aerial Port Squadron and 439th Contracting Flight.
The wing also has the 439th Aerospace Medicine Squadron and 439th Aeromedical Staging Squadron assigned.