93rd Fighter Squadron (USAF AFRC)

"Makos" 

93 FS "Makos" (USAF AFRC)
Status:
Active
Version: F-16C/D block 30 (big mouth)
Role:Air Defense, Attack
Tailband: Grey (checkerboard)
Motto: N/A
Badge: N/A

Sideways profile for the 93rd FS in 2007 with the unit marking on the tail.

F-16 History

In November of 1989 the 93rd Fighter Squadron began conversion from the F-4D to the F-16A/B. Homestead AFB is only 96 miles away from Cuba, making it a strategic location. On February 1st, 1992 the squadron changed designation from the 93rd Tactical Fighter Squadron to the 93rd Fighter Squadron.

In August of 1992, Homestead AFB was hammered by one of the worst storms ever to hit the United States in recent times. Homestead was devastated, but most of the aircraft had been evacuated. After the storm President Bush visited the area and promised it would be rebuilt, however the three active duty squadrons never returned just leaving the 93rd FS a USAFRes unit. While Homestead AFB was being rebuilt only for the 93rd FS, they were temporary based at Wright-Patterson AFB, Ohio from September to December 1992. Still waiting for repair work to be carried out the 93rd FS then moved to MacDill AFB, Florida for the time period of February 1993 to March 1994.

In 1995 the 93rd Fighter Squadron gave up its block 15's for the block 25/32. Most of the block 15's were retired to AMARC but some ended up with the 162nd FW in Arizona. Most of the units F-16s were block 32's but did fly three block 25's.


USAF F-16A block 15 #82-0938 part of the 93rd TFS has its ladder hung on the cockpit ready to go. The aircraft is still in use (2005) with the 148th FS. [Photo by Mike Kopack]

On October 23rd, 1999 Major Michael Lee of the 93rd FS won the Joe Bill Dryden Semper Viper Award for outstanding airmanship. Major Lee was flight lead in a two-aircraft flight patrolling the no-fly zone over northern Iraq. Near the beginning of the four-hour vulnerability period, two surface-to-air missiles were launched at coalition aircraft. Throughout the flight, aircraft received numerous radar-warning indications of antiaircraft artillery and surface-to-air missile threats. Lee performed inertial navigation system updates and aggressively positioned his flight close to the target area. By taking these actions, he was in position to identify the target when he observed the impact of a standoff weapon on one of the site's three missile launchers. Although the key target-tracking radar had not been attacked, Lee took his flight into a lethal threat ring to destroy the second launcher with two laser-guided bombs

Starting in 1999 and for the next two years, the 93rd FS started to receive the Situational Awareness Data Lind (SADL), LITENING II Targeting Pod for their F-16C/D's.

On July 1st, 1999 the 93rd Fighter Squadron lost a pilot, Major Samuel D’Angelo, in a low level training mission near Sebring, Florida. Evidence supports that there was a bird strike to the canopy and pilot which resulted in the loss to F-16C #84-1268.

In 2001 the squadron made another conversion, this time giving up the P&W engine for the GE block 30 with a big mouth inlet.


USAF Air Force Reserve 93rd FS Commanding Officer's F-16C block 30 #86323 carrying 2x AMRAAM, 2x Sidewinder, 2x GBU-12, and Litening pod. [USAF photo by MSgt. Joe Cupido]

Aircraft Markings History

1989 - present

The biggest difference in appearance of the markings over the years is full colour markings verses toned down gray markings. When the tail band is colored, it consists of black and white checkerboard. Tail code is 'FM' and between the tail code and the tail band is an image of a shark. Florida Makos is what the 'FM' tail code stands for although it has been said to mean Florida Miami. The words 'Makos' appear in letters on the base of the rudder.


Unit History

  • 1943: Activation of the squadron
  • 1943: C-47 'Skytrain'
  • 1945: C-46 'Commando'
  • 1946: Disbanded
  • 1952: Activation of the squadron in Selfridge, Michigan
  • 1952: F-51 'Mustang'
  • 1953: F-80 'Shooting Star'
  • 1956: F-84 'Thunderjet'
  • 1957: Disbanded
  • 1978: Activation of the squadron in Homestead, Florida
  • 1978: F-4C 'Phantom II' (part of 482 FW)
  • 1983: F-4D 'Phantom II'
  • 1989: F-16A/B 'Fighting Falcon'
  • 1995: F-16C/D 'Fighting Falcon'

Deployments

'Northern Watch'
Incirlik AB, Turkey (July 2nd, 1997 to August 2nd, 1997)
Operation Northern Watch was a US European Command Combined Task Force (CTF) who was responsible for enforcing the United Nations mandated no-fly zone above the 36th parallel in Iraq. This mission was a successor to Operation Provide Comfort which also entailed support for the Iraqi Kurds.
'Northern Watch'
Incirlik AB, Turkey (April of 1999 to June of 1999)
In the continouing effort to provide air cover over the Northern part of Iraq, the 93rd FS was tasked for a second time to ensure this role. In a three month rotation the unit flew air patrols above the Iraqi 36th parallel.
'Northern Watch'
Incirlik AB, Turkey (June of 2000 to July of 2000)
For a third consecutive time the 93rd FS was tasked to fly patrol mission over Northern Iraq. The mission remained the same since the inception of it in 1997.
'Southern Watch/Enduring Freedom'
Al Jaber AB, Kuwait (October of 2001 to December of 2001)
Operation Southern Watch was an operation which was responsible for enforcing the United Nations mandated no-fly zone below the 32nd parallel in Iraq. This mission was initiated mainly to cover for attacks of Iraqi forces on the Iraqi Shi’ite Muslims. The 93rd FS participated by sending four F-16s as part of a rainbow team on a regularly scheduled Aerospace Expeditionary Force rotation (AEF 7/8 - Cycle 2). Ten aircraft participated in total with the other units being the 457th FS, 466th FS and pilots & crew only from the 302nd FS. They were to return in November 2001 but this was extended because of the war in Afghanistan. In this 90 day deployment, the 93rd Fighter Squadron personnel took the first 30 days. This meant that they missed out on OEF but did see some combat action over southern Iraq when they took out some surface-to-air and anti-aircraft sites.
'Iraqi Freedom'
Balad AB, Iraq (May 19th, 2007 to August 16th, 2007)
Operation Iraqi Freedom was initiated in March of 2003 to drive Saddam Hussein from reigning Iraq. Over the next years, multiple units where tasked to perform air cover over Iraq in the wake of this war. The 93rd FS was sent to Iraq together with the 457th FS for the AEF 7/8 (Cycle 6) rotation. A total of twelve aircraft went to the middle east of which 6 where from the 93rd.
'Iraqi Freedom'
Balad AB, Iraq (January 12, 2009 to May 98th, 2009)
Aircraft departed Miami at 1am on Wednesday January 7th 2009 for destination Iraq. Around 300 crew members from the 482nd Fighter Wing involved in the deployment as part of AEF7/8 (Cycle 7).
'Enduring Freedom'
Bagram AB, Afghanistan (December 15th, 2013 to May 3rd, 2014)
This marked the first deployment of the squadron for Enduring Freedom. The squadron was rotated into theatre together with their all-time sisters of the 457th FS. Unit was replaced by the 100th Fighter Squadron.

F-16 Airframe Inventory

Photos

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