80th FTW welcomes 459th FTS
By Airman 1st Class Candy Miller , 82nd Training Wing Public Affairs
/ Published April 21, 2009
SHEPPARD AIR FORCE BASE, Texas --
The 80th Flying Training Wing welcomed an additional squadron to the wing during the 459th Flying Training Squadron reactivation ceremony and assumption of command April 17, only one week after welcoming the 469th FTS to the wing.
The 459th FTS, previously the 459th Fighter Squadron, was reactivated to ease oversight of the overcrowded 89th Flying Training Squadron. There are about 40 personnel in the average squadron, but the 89th FTS had approximately 100 people.
German air force Col. Axel Pohlmann, commander of the 80th Operations Group, said increasing leadership to the mission of training T-6 pilots will make it easier for commanders to oversee training.
"The (459th FTS) has very good people working for it. They have all the necessary experience to lead the squadron into the future," he said.
The first commander of the 459th FTS, Lt. Col. Scottie Zamzow, said he was glad to take command as some members of the 89th FTS transfer to the 459th FTS.
"My job is to serve the people of the squadron," he said, "and I won't let the Airmen down."
Colonel Zamzow said he has two goals for his new squadron.
"I hope to make an impact on these Airmen that lasts longer than I do," he said. "I also want to leave the 459th better than it was when it started."
The history of the 459th began Sept. 1, 1943 when the 459th Fighter Squadron, nicknamed the "Twin Dragons" for its two-engine P-38 fighter airplanes, was activated to "destroy enemy aircraft in the air or on the ground," during World War II.
The unit served as part of the 80th Fighter Group in the China-Burma-India Theater which was under control of the royal air force. The squadron was deactivated Nov. 5, 1945 without every serving on American soil.