The 7th Bomb Group origins trace back to its activation, in September 1918, as the 1st Army Observation Group during World War I. Their mission was short-lived, and by April, 1919 the group returned to the United States.

In October 1919, the Group was re-activated as the 1st Army Observation Group at Park Field, Tennessee. It was then moved to Langley Field, Virginia.

In March 1921 the group was redesignated the 7th Group (Observation), and on 30 August it was inactivated. The US Army Air Service redesignated the 7th as a Bombardment Group in 1923, but the unit was not activated until June 1928.

In April 1931, the 9th Bomb Squadron was activated and assigned to the 7th Bombardment Group at March Field, California. In January 1941, the 9th moved along with the 7th Bombardment Group to Salt Lake City, Utah. When the 7th Bomb Group left the United States in December 1941, it was made up of five squadrons: Headquarters Squadron, 9th, 11th, 22nd Bomb Squadrons, and the 88th Reconnaissance Squadron. With the ground echelon setting sail on 13 November 1941, the Group made ready to fly into Hickam, Field, Hawaii the following month on 7 December 1941. Their B-17s arrived at Hawaii in the midst of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. Unarmed and unable to fight back, they lost several aircraft to enemy and friendly fire. Following the attack, the remaining aircraft returned to the States before moving on to Java. Accordingly, the ground echelon, en route via troop ship, headed to Australia, and then later to Java. The remainder of the group was then sent Java, and group headquarters was located in Australia.

The 7th moved to India in 8 Mar 1942 and was assigned to the Tenth Air Force in Karachi, India. In April 1942, the 11th and 22nd Squadrons were split off and became the basis of a B-25 Group. The 88th was re-designated the 436th Bomb Squadron. Two other squadrons were formed - 492nd & 493rd. While in Karachi, the 9th Bomb Squadron ferried troops to and evacuated casualties from the intense fighting in Burma. On 2 July 1942, the unit moved to Lydda, Palestine, where their B-17's pounded German shipping and harbors. That effective bombing helped to disrupt the offensive the German Army was attempting against the invading American forces. Their time in the Middle East was short-lived, and in October 1942, the 9th returned to Karachi, India to assist with the bombing of new Japanese targets in China, Siam, Andaman Islands and Burma. The Group's four squadrons - 9th, 436th, 492nd & 493rd - remained in the CBI for the duration of the war. After the war, the 7th returned to the US in December 1945 and was inactivated on 6 January 1946.

Names and information on this list of 7th Bomb Group personnel have been added based on the information gleaned from personal accounts of surviving 7th BG veterans, the rosters of the 7th Bomb Group Historical Foundation, Robert Dorr's 7th Bombardment Group/Wing, 1918-1995 & other books, memoirs of 7th BG veterans, CBI Roundup, Ex-CBI Roundup, Missing Air Crew Reports, newsletters, on-line memorials, obituaries, photo captions, NARA,, copies of documents (General Orders, Letter Orders, Special Orders, Commendations, Citations, etc.) generously shared by families of 7th BG personnel, and various internet points of reference. While every precaution has been taken to ensure accuracy, please take into consideration misspellings and transposition errors that often occurred in official record-keeping of the day. I welcome suggestions aimed at correcting or adding to this roster.

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Many Thanks To All Who Shared Their Photos & Information To Help Keep Alive The Heroic Sacrifices Of These Fine Men of "The Forgotten Theater" - China-Burma-India

"We can never forget the role of our heroic dead. The 7th lost men in Java, China, Burma, Thailand, and India and throughout their long struggle against the enemy. They died for a better world and to us their deaths shall not be in vain. They know we must pay a price for victory. We MUST make that victory secure in the form of a decent and peaceful world." - Sgt. Jerry J. Ribnick, 493rd Bomb Sqdn.

Squadrons of the Seventh Bombardment Group (H)


Please click on the (L-R: 9th, 436th, 492nd & 493rd) Squadron badges above


Air Crew, Ground and Support Crew Photos

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This web site is provided as a public service. It is intended to provide factual, historical information to the public, to commemorate the contributions and to preserve the memory of the sacrifices of our World War II veterans serving with U.S. Army Air Forces in the China-Burma-India theater. Permission is required for any commercial use or mass distribution purposes of the copyrighted material.