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Shaw AFB


 Shaw Air Force Base in Sumter, SC South Carolina Military Bases


Shaw AFB is currently one of the largest military bases in the United States of America. It is operated by the Air Force – more precisely, by the Air Combat Command. It is located in the central side of South Carolina, close to Sumter. The base is named in the memory of Ervin David Shaw, one of the first Americans who flew in World War I in official missions. The pilot was killed by three aircrafts that opened fire on his plane while he was getting back from a surveillance mission in the summer of 1918. Before being taken down, Shaw successfully managed to eliminate one of the enemies.


The base began by dealing with minor operations. It was established in 1941. Its main mission was to train and prepare cadets and pilots for the war missions of the upcoming World War II. In its first years, the base benefited from three runways and a few extra airfields close to them. The school classes started in the autumn of 1941. The first class joined it without the site to be entirely finished. However, it was fine enough to support the basic courses. The same class graduated in February, next year. One year later, in the autumn of 1942, the school was improved and the courses became advanced. Two new aircrafts were introduced – Beech AT 10 and AT 6 Texan. More than 8500 pilots graduated from the school during the war. In 1945, some of the base missions changed, as well as the host unit. At the same time, the base also became responsible for hosting the prisoners of war. The first prisoners were brought to the base in 1945 to work on the local farms. Next year, they were sent to Europe to repair the damage they did – they had to rebuild the European cities destroyed by the war. In 1947, many of them returned to Germany, while others decided to get back to the United States of America and become regular citizens.


As World War II reached to an end, Shaw AFB was turned into a permanent military base. Over the Cold War, it saw a lot of units joining and leaving it, as the objectives were constantly changing, not to mention about the operational forces. Over the last years, Shaw AFB is responsible for supporting the Iraq and Afghanistan invasions. After the 9/11 attacks, it dealt with the defense of the USA, while the Iraq invasion was actively supported by the units hosted on site.


Shaw AFB is currently hosting the 20-th Fighter Wing, responsible for operating the F 16CJ aircrafts. It includes four squadrons – the 55-th, 77-th and 79-th Fighter squadrons, as well as the 20-th Operations Support Squadron. Aside from the operations group, the unit also consists of the maintenance, medical and mission support groups.



Ideally, you should get in touch with the housing office at Shaw AFB from time, so you can complete the application early and get a home by the time you get there. The application depends on your family, rank and tasks. The less lucky individuals may use the privatized off site system.

The Shaw Air Force Base is situated in the City of Sumter, South Carolina. The establishment inherited completion of development in the year 1941 and is the current accommodation utilized to host the F-16 Combat Wing, the United States Central Command Air Forces, the 20th Fighter Wing and the Ninth Air Force. The name assigned to the installation is in coexistence of the first lieutenant, the renowned Ervin David Shaw who was a pilot in World War I. The lieutenant is presently under managerial representation by Colonel Joseph T. Guastella. This is one of the most established of all air force bases in the United States.


This installation lies at an estimated distance of 40 miles in encompassment to Columbia which is the capital state. The involvement for recreational activities and vacation is vast, since the Atlantic Ocean is in close proximity, an estimate of only 2 hours to avail adequate sunshine in the beautiful waters. There are many fine embodiments that are pleasing to enjoy in the east coast.


The base will adequately execute leadership duties in providing assistance for various challenges faced by projects and to enable combat-ready air force operatives to engage in battle. There are currently 600 civilian personnel’s, 5, 400 active military personnel’s on duty and an embodiment of 11, 000 family members accommodated on the premises.


The base embraces confidence in providing proper maintenance for all operatives constituted on property and encourages safe practices for disciplinary enrollments in correspondence to the entire base population. The workforce is dedicated in serving the installation with quality services and professionalism. The military base is assigned for engaging in field oriented flight training for various combatants and has serviced the United States Air Force Base with pride. The aim is achievable in all aspects of the facility, since the teams are motivated towards producing positive workmanship in all areas of development.

Shaw AFB



Shaw Air Force Base is a United States Military facility located about 8.4 miles west-northwest of Sumter, South Carolina and is under the jurisdiction of the United States Air Force Air Combat Command.



The mission of the United States Air Force is to fly, fight and win…in air, space and cyberspace.



Shaw Air Force Base is named in honor of WWI pilot 1st Lieutenant Ervin David Shaw. Lieutenant Shaw was one of the first Americans to fly combat missions in WWI.  Shaw died after three enemy aircraft attacked his Bristol while he was returning from a reconnaissance mission on July 9, 1918. For a brief time, Shaw Field also served as a prisoner-of-war camp. The first group of German POWs arrived on March 1, 1945. Eventually, 175 of them lived in an encampment just off the main base, on Peach Orchard Road (also known as South Carolina Hwy 441) across from Shaw’s (side) hospital (currently closed) gate and worked on local farms in the area. They departed in the early months of 1946 for the rebuilding of European cities and towns that were devastated during the war. Those prisoners were eventually repatriated to Germany around 1947, with some returning to the Shaw and Sumter area and obtaining their U.S. citizenship.


Shaw Army Airfield was designated a permanent Army Air Forces instantiation after the war, being transferred to Continental Air Forces on 16 April 1945.


Population Served

Shaw AFB is home to more than 5, 400 military members, including over 11,000 family members and over 600 civilian employees. Shaw AFB is one of South Carolina’s largest single site of employees.


Base Transportation

There is currently no on-post transportation.



Sponsorship Training is held each month and is a mandatory requirement. Being a good sponsor starts with the 3 C’s – Communication, Concern, and Creativity.


Relocation Assistance

Relocation Assistance Program – Moving is a way of life in the Air Force. Whether it’s your first, fifth, or last move, it’s always a major undertaking and it is important that you seek the services of the A&FRC’s Relocation Assistance Program (RAP). The Relocation Assistance Program staff helps Air Force single and married members as well as DoD civilians and families through all aspects of a move. Housing Office (803)895-2421 DSN: 965-2421.


Critical Installation Information

*On-base dormitories are available for single E-1 through E-4, unaccompanied enlisted airmen. Using the programmed development concept, the dorms are conveniently located near the dining facility, post office and recreational facilities such as the fitness center. Each dorm building is equipped with a washer and dryer.


*Child Care is provided on base through the Child Development Center and through the Family Child Care programs.

*If you live on Shaw Air Force Base your children will attend Sumter School District Two schools

*Shaw AFB does offer on and off base housing.

*Shaw AFB has no emergency services. For on-base emergencies call 911 for an ambulance.

Contact Information for AFB

Shaw AF Base Operator DSN: 965-1110 (803) 895-1110

Carolina Pines Inn (803)895-3803/(803)895-3805/1-800-769-7429 DSN: 965-3803/3805

Child Development Center (803) 895-2247

Clinic–Shaw Air Force Base (803) 895-CARE DSN: 965-CARE

Dental Clinic 803-895-6106/8

Education Office (803) 895-1838 DSN: 965-1838

Housing Office (803)895-2421 DSN: 965-2421

Outdoor Recreation/Recreation Supply/ FamCamp (803)895-0449

Pediatric Clinic 803-895-CARE

Shaw AFB Youth Programs (803) 895-2251 DSN: 965-2251