VNAF use of Da Nang Air Base

VNAF use of Da Nang Air Base

Da Nang Air Base was one of the four air bases inherited from the French at the conclusion of the French Indochina War and the formation of the Air Department, Republic of Vietnam Armed Forces on 1 July 1955. At the time of its creation, however Torane Air Base, as Da Nang AB was called at the time, was devoid of any military aircraft. The VNAF having some training aircraft at Nha Trang AB and an air depot at Bien Hoa AB. There were also a few C-47 Skytrains at Ton Son Nuht Airport.

The first VNAF aircraft to arrive at Da Nang were some United States Military Assistance Program (MAP) Cessna L-19 Bird Dog observation aircraft in January 1956. They were assigned to the 1st GAO (Group, Artillery Observation)

In 1961 North American T-28 Trojans arrived at Da Nang in a fighter-bomber configuration and formed the nucleus of the 516th Fighter Squadron. By 1963, the 41st Tactical Wing had been formed at Da Nang, the 516th Fighter Squadron equipped with T-28s, the 213th Helicopter Squadron with H-34 Choctaws and the 110th Observation Squadron with O-1 Bird Dog observation aircraft.

Tthroughout the 1960s, A-1s operated from Da Nang as the main attack aircraft of the VNAF. As the war continued and the VNAF was expanded by the United States, more fighter units and more Skyraiders were added. The next two squadrons were the 526th and 528th which were formed with A-37 Dragonfly jets in the late 1960s. However the ability of the VNAF to use the A-1s remained and the 530th Fighter Squadron was activated in 1970 with Skyraiders


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