The 413th Fighter Group (USAAF) was a fighter group that served as a fighter-bomber unit with the Twentieth Air Force, mainly operating over Japan and occupied China.
The group was constituted on 5 October 1944 and activated on 15 October 1944. It trained with the P-47 Thunderbolt, and operated that aircraft for the rest of its existence. The group moved to the Pacific theatre in April-June 1945 and joined the Twentieth Air Force. The long term plan was for the group to join XXI Bomber Command, but it was temporarily assigned to AAFPOA (Army Air Forces, Pacific Ocean Areas), and when it was based on Ie Shima came under the operational control of the Seventh Air Force.
The group entered combat from a temporary base on Saipan, from where in May it carried out a few strafing attacks on the bypassed Japanese garrisons of the Truk Islands. This was an accepted part of the combat training of newly arrived units, taking advantage of the weakened state of the Japanese garrison.
The group then began normal operations from Ie Shima in June 1945. It was used to make dive-bombing and strafing attacks on a variety of targets in Japan, including factories, radar stations, airfields and small ships. It was also used against shipping and airfields in the occupied parts of China. In addition the 301st Wing, which it was part of, formed part of the Air Defense Command of the Tenth Army Tactical Air Force (Task Group 99.2), which was responsible for defending the US held parts of the Ryukyus.
The group only flew one escort mission during the war, escorting B-29s attacking Yawata in Japan on 8 August 1945.
In August 1945 the group was moved to the Eighth Air Force, which was being moved from Europe to the Pacific, ready for the planned invasion of Japan. The war ended before the move was complete, but the 413th remained with the Eighth after the end of the war when it became part of the air defence and occupation forces on the Ryukyu Islands. The group was inactivated on Okinawa on 15 October 1946.
1944-1946: Republic P-47 Thunderbolt
|5 October 1944||Constituted as 413th Fighter Group|
|15 October 1944||Activated|
|April-June 1944||To Asiatic-Pacific Theatre and Twentieth Air Force|
|May 1944||Combat debut from Saipan|
|June 1944||Combat debut from Ie Shima|
|August 1945||To Eighth Air Force|
|15 October 1946||Inactivated|
Lt Col George H Hollingsworth: 15 Oct 1944
Col Harrison R Thyng: 1 Nov 1944
Lt Col John B Coleman: 14 Oct 1945
Col Loring F Stetson Jr: c. Jun-15 Oct 1946.
Seymour Johnson Field, NC:
15 Oct 1944
Bluethenthal Field, NC: 9 Nov 1944-6 Apr 1945
Ie Shima: 19 May 1945
Kadena, Okinawa: 10 Nov 1945
Yontan, Okinawa: 29 Jan-15 Oct 1946
1944-45: 301st Fighter Wing; Twentieth Air Force
1945-46: 301st Fighter Wing; Eighth Air Force