408 Tactical Helicopter Squadron (THC)
408 Squadron is co-located with the Canadian Mechanized Brigade Group at Canadian Forces Base (CFB) Edmonton.
Equipped with CH-146 Griffons, the Squadron's primary role is to provide support to the Canadian Army and other government departments.
408 Squadron's previous overseas deployments were to the Sinai Peninsula, Honduras, Haiti, Bosnia, Kosovo, and most recently, Afghanistan. The unit has also been heavily involved in domestic operations such as the floods in Winnipeg, forest fires in Western Canada, G8 summits, and the Vancouver 2010 Olympic games.
Personnel from 408 Squadron were deployed to Afghanistan almost continually in some capacity from 2006 - 2011. Initially operating the CU-161 Sperwer unmanned aerial vehicle for six-month rotations, in 2008 the unit started deploying personnel to operate Griffon and Chinook helicopters in support of the Canadian Helicopter Force (Afghanistan). As part of Canada's Air Wing in Kandahar, the Squadron contributed regular rotations to support the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) with personnel and equipment transport; reconnaissance; armed escort; and, fire support.
Given the high level of IED threat posed to ground-based transportation, the Squadron proved to be invaluable in helping keep Canadian and other ISAF troops off dangerous roadways in Afghanistan.
|408 Squadron Badge|
The 408 Squadron badge depicts a Canada Goose volant. The Canada goose is at home in Canada, England and Scotland; its speed and power of flight are indicative of the operational function of the squadron.
408 Squadron is situated at Edmonton Garrison, Edmonton, the capital city of Alberta. See Discover Edmonton.
408 Squadron's history dates back to June 24, 1941, when Bomber Command's directive called for the formation of 408 Squadron as part of No. 5 (RAF) Group. It was to be the second Canadian bomber squadron formed overseas.
The Goose Squadron, as it was to become known, was initially based at Lindholm, Yorkshire, England, and equipped with Handley Page Hampdens.
During the war, the Goose Squadron changed from the Hampden Aircraft to Halifax , to Lancaster , to Halifax , and back to Lancaster Aircraft.
It flew 4,610 sorties and dropped 11,340 tons of bombs. A total of 170 Aircraft were lost and 933 personnel were killed, listed as missing in action (MIA) or prisoners of war (POW).
Squadron members won two hundred decorations, and 11 battle honours for its wartime operations.
On September 5th, 1945, 408 Squadron was officially disbanded.
On January 10, 1949, the Goose Squadron was reformed at Royal Canadian Air Force (RCAF) Station Rockcliffe, Ontario. Equipped with eight Lancaster MK.X photographic Aircraft, it was tasked with the mapping of Canada, specifically the far North.
In 1962, the Squadron was issued a flight of T-33 Aircraft and given the additional task of photoreconnaissance missions in support of Army exercises.
On February 29, 1964, the Lancaster Aircraft was retired and replaced with Dakotas.
The Goose Squadron was moved to Rivers, Manitoba, and re-designated as a Transport Support and Area Reconnaissance Squadron.
On May 1, 1964, RCAF Station Rivers Transport Support Flight with its C-119 Boxcars was transferred into 408 Squadron. In 1965, the Boxcars were replaced by CC-130 Hercules Aircraft. As the decade drew to a close, 408 Squadron was once again redesignated.
On October 1, 1968, it started its long history with 10 Tactical Air Group as a "Tactical Fighter Squadron".
During this post-war era, the Squadron would fly a total of seven different Aircraft, the Lancaster, Cansos, Norseman, Dakotas, Boxcars, T-33s, and Hercules Aircraft. Late in 1970 , the Squadron was once more disbanded .
The Goose Squadron was not to be kept down for long.
On January 1, 1971, 408 Squadron was once again re-activated at Namao (Edmonton), Alberta, as a Tactical Helicopter Squadron (THS) and equipped with CH-135 Twin Huey and CH-136 Kiowa helicopters.
Its primary tasking was to provide tactical aviation to the Army . The missions included air mobiles, air ambulance, air observation, reconnaissance insertions, troop movement, airborne command and control platform, and paratrooper's drops. In September 1996, the Squadron was re-equipped with CH-146 Griffon helicopters.
408 Tactical Helicopter Squadron
Canadian Forces Base Edmonton
PO BOX 10500 Stn Forces
Edmonton AB T5J 4J5
1 Wing Public Affairs Officer
1 Wing Headquarters
Sergeant KS Smith CD Building
Canadian Forces Base Kingston
PO Box 17000 Stn Forces
Kingston ON K7K 7B4
Telephone: 613-541-5010 ext 8264