Vance Air Force Base
Vance Air Force Base (1941-Active) - A United States Air Force Base first established in 1941 as Enid Army Flying Field at Enid, Garfield County, Oklahoma. Renamed Vance Air Force Base in 1949. Active air force base.
World War II
Construction began on 12 Jul 1941 and Enid Field was officially activated on 11 Feb 1942 at cost of $4,034,583. The Project Officer was Major Henry W. Dorr who supervised the construction and developed the basic pilot training base.
The War Department activated the 31st Flying Training Wing (Primary) at Enid on 8 Jan 1943 and assigned it to the AAF Central Flying Training Command for the duration of the war.
Enid Field was deactivated on 2 Jul 1945 and was transferred to the Army Corps of Engineers on 2 Jul 1946. The base trained more than 9,000 pilots for the Army Air Corps between 1941 and 1945.
Post World War II
The base was reactivated on 13 Jan 1948, renamed Enid Air Force Base, and assigned to the Air Training Command (ATC) as a pilot training base. The base was renamed after a local World War II hero and Medal of Honor recipient, Lt Col Leon Robert Vance, Jr. on 9 Jul 1949.
The twin-engine T-37 jet, designed as a primary trainer became operational at the base in 1961. Replacing the T-33 in 1963-64 was the T-38, an advanced supersonic jet trainer. In 1995 Vance transition to the Specialized Undergraduate Pilot Training curriculum.
Vance was the first base in ATC to have extensive civilian contractor support for base functions ranging from aircraft maintenance to fire department to childcare services. The support contract began in 1960 with Serv-Air. Northrop Worldwide Aircraft Services assumed the contract in 1972 and then 2001, the support contract transferred to DynCorp Technical Services. DynCorp's contract was assumed by Computer Sciences Corporation in 2005. Computer Sciences Corporation’s contract was assumed by Pacific Architects and Engineers in 2013 and they presently perform in that capacity.
All students practice basic patterns and landings at Kegelman Air Force Auxiliary Field located near Cherokee, Oklahoma. Vance is considered the second busiest RAPCON air traffic control facility in the United States, behind Nellis AFB. Nellis AFB is open 24 hours, but Vance AFB has more traffic per hour.
Visited: 7 Sep 2019