ELLSWORTH AIR FORCE BASE, S.D. -- The 432nd Attack Squadron was renamed the 89th ATKS during a ceremony at the Pride Hangar, June 21, that was attended by 432nd Wing leadership, including Col. Case Cunningham, 432nd Wing commander and Chief Master Sgt. Michael Ditore, 432nd Wing command chief.
With the 28th Bomb Wing being realigned under Air Force Global Strike Command from Air Combat Command in October 2015, the 432nd ATKS became a tenant unit at Ellsworth AFB and needed to be re-designated.
"Ellsworth's realignment drove the squadron to fall under the 432nd Wing for tactical and administrative matters," said 1st Lt. Jeremy, 89th ATKS weapons enactment officer. "Having a squadron with the same name as the wing it is attached to makes it easy for confusion, so to avoid that, the 432nd Wing thought it best for the ATKS to re-designate."
First Lt. Taeyoung, 89th ATKS executive officer, said being renamed the 89th was a way to get back in touch with the unit's history, stating that it is important to not forget where they came from.
The unit was initially established as the 89th Aero Squadron on August 19, 1917, becoming the 89th Reconnaissance Squadron in the 1930's and then the 432nd Bombardment Squadron on April 22, 1942, four days after the Doolittle Raid. The name falls in line with Ellsworth heritage and both squadrons are one and the same.
"The mission of the squadron will not change and we will continue business as usual," Jeremy said. "While the number on our patch will change, we will continue to find, exploit and neutralize the enemy. The true meaning of the re-designation is reconnecting the squadron to our original lineage from 100 years ago."
According to Jeremy, as a tenant unit the squadron still remains closely connected to all 28th BW agencies. He says the members appreciate all the support the base provides, and want to extend their deepest gratitude to all of Ellsworth and Rapid City.