Vanessa Wilcox, First Female Commander in the US Air Force Bomber Squadron

Vanessa Wilcox, First Female Commander in the US Air Force Bomber Squadron
Vanessa Wilcox, newly appointed female commander as leader of the 96th Bomb Squadron of Operations Group 2 / DVIDS

International Military - US Air Force Lieutenant Colonel Vanessa Wilcox was the first female commander of the 96th Bomb Squadron of Operations Group 2. The changeover ceremony, held April 21, served as the official transfer of both duties and responsibilities from the previous commander to the new commander.

Wilcox is a B-52H Weapon Systems Officer with over 1500 hours including multiple deployments to the Pacific. He recently served as Deputy Group Commander for the 2nd Mission Support Group on the installation. Previously, he served as Director of Operations for the 20th Bomb Squadron.“I feel very happy and grateful for the opportunity to lead this historic squadron. I am proud to serve with the men and women of the 96th Bomb Squadron to build on the legacy that past great warriors have left during their 105-year tenure,” said Vanessa Wilcox.

96th Bomb Squadron of Operations Group 2

Operations Group 2 (2 OG) is a flying force of the United States Air Force 2d Bomb Wing assigned to Air Force Global Strike Command Eighth Air Force command. Quoted from Military History, this group is stationed at Barksdale Air Force Base, Louisiana.

2 OG is one of two US Air Force Global Strike groups that fly the B-52H Stratofortess bomber aircraft. Tasked with protecting the United States and supporting every global interest by providing lethal combat capabilities.

Group 2 OG is the successor to the 2d Bomb Wing, one of the 15 air combat groups formed by the Army before World War II. They were the oldest group of bombers in the U.S. Air Force, fighting on the Western Front during World War I, entering combat on September 12, 1918.

After the war was over, they participated in Brigadier General Billy Mitchell's 1921 offshore bombing test. And during World War II, Operations Group 2 engaged in combat from bases in North Africa and Italy flying B-17 Flying Fortress bombers.

In the post-war era, the 2 OGs were one of the first US Air Force units assigned to Strategic Air Command on July 1, 1947. Equipped with the legacy B-29 Superfortress bomber from World War II.

It was decommissioned for some reason in 1952 and returned to service in 1991 while still serving the US Air Force.

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