The Charter: Our squadron's original charter is undated, but the charters forming the separate Warren Senior Squadron 304 and Warren Cadet Squadron 304 were signed by Maj Gen Lucas V. Beau, CAP National Commander 1947-1955, therefore dating our beginnings to that time period. On 4 May 1962 the two squadrons were combined as the Warren Composite Squadron 304C. Originally there were squadrons in Alliance, Ashtabula, East Liverpool, Salem, Warren, and Youngstown. The unit closest to us, the Youngstown Composite Squadron 301, were extreme rivals, mostly amongst the senior members.
The 1960's: This information about the 60's comes from an e-mail from a former commander of the Youngstown Composite Squadron 301, Mr. Wayne B. Charles. A copy of this e-mail can be found here. In 1964/65, our squadron formed a joint Drill Team with Squadron 301 under the leadership of our then Squadron Commander, Capt Charles Cole. This team won the Ohio Wing Cadet Competition twice and placed a very close 3rd at the Great Lakes Region Cadet Competition (the region competition was canceled the second time they won at the wing level.) During the 60's, Group 3, and locally Squadron 304, routinely hosted the Ohio Wing Conference in the Youngstown area. Operationally, the squadron also worked with the Trumbull County Civil Defense organization to prepare for the possibility of a nuclear attack on northeastern Ohio. At the end of the 60's, both the Youngstown and Warren Squadrons were among the most active in the wing with over 100 members each, in addition to sending the most cadets and staff to the summer encampments held at Wright-Patterson AFB than any other squadrons in the wing.
The 1980's: In 1983 Squadron 301 moved to Akron, becoming the present day 96th Composite Squadron, but most of its members transferred into our unit. This would leave us as the only squadron in the area.
The 1990's: The 90's would prove to be a roller coaster ride for our squadron, taking us from some distinct highs to some of the worst periods in our unit's history. In 1994 our squadron was named the Squadron of Merit for Ohio Wing for the first time in our records. This meant that we were the best cadet or composite unit in the wing, and this sense of excellence would last for the next five years. In the mid 90's, when the Youngstown Air Reserve Station was up for BRAC review, the squadron knew it was their responsibility to help the base in any way possible. Under the leadership of cadet Matthew Mullins, the squadron pitched in doing landscaping work and other cleaning jobs around the base. The superior performance of the 910th Airlift Wing saved the base from closure, but the hard work and dedication of our squadron's members did not go unrecognized. During the later half of the 90's, our unit's name changed to the Youngstown-Warren Composite Squadron 304, and in 1998 with the wing imposed deletion of group-based numbers (the first number of the unit's number sequence was the group they were in) and movement to charter number utilization, our name changed to the Youngstown-Warren Composite Squadron 051. In 1999, our unit suffered dramatically, with our Cadet Corps dwindling to to around 10 active members, undoubtedly one of our darkest moments, prompting the cadet staff to take dramatic action at the beginning of the new millennium and propel the unit back onto a course of excellence on which our unit began.
2000 to Present: With the beginning of the new millennium our squadron was reborn. It took until the middle of 2001 to fix the damages caused in 1999, and from there the unit set off to reclaim some of its previous splendor. The unit won the Ohio Wing Squadron of Merit Awards for the next three consecutive years (2002, 2003, and 2004.) The squadron's Drill Team was reinstated, winning the Ohio Wing Cadet Competition in 2002 and 2004; the Great Lakes Region Cadet Competition in 2004; and fourth place in the National Cadet Competition in 2004. A more detailed history of the 051 Drill team can be found here. During 2003, our unit was asked by the 910th to take over the performances of the 910th AW Honor Guard who were deployed around the world defending our freedom. Naturally the unit agreed, launching a string of high profile Color Guard performances. In May of 2004, our name changed again to the Youngstown ARS Composite Squadron to more closely link our unit to the installation at which we meet. In June of 2004, members of the squadron served as Dignitary Escorts and performed the Flag Folding Ceremony for the retirement of base commander Brigadier General Michael F. Gjede, the first sitting general officer of the 910th AW.
Unit Locations: Around the Base
The earliest records of our squadron's meeting location dates back to 22 February 1972 with Air Force Contract No. DACA-31-3-72-637. This license granted us full-time exclusive use of the entire first floor (approximately 5,744 square feet) of Building 116. The building, which is now torn down, served as an Airmen's Dormitory and was located just to the north of Building 113's east parking lot.
With the submittal of our contract renewal letter on 28 June 1976, the Air Force renewed our contract with Amendment 1 on 27 October 1976. The amendment moved us to the upper floor, east wing of Building 110 and decreased our meeting area to 2,788 square feet. Building 110 was an Airmen's Dormitory that used to be located North of Building 111 where the current lodging parking lot across from the Gym is located.
Amendment 2 of our Contract dated 31 January 1977 served to correct a few typos in Amendment 1. Amendment 3, dated 20 June 1978, moved us to Building 305 in which we occupied 5,000 square feet of the second floor. Building 305 is the eastern-most hangar on the flight line and closest to King Graves Road.
Amendment 4 dated 19 October 1981 moved us to Building 113, in which we occupied 1,780 square feet of the basement.
Amendment 5 dated 23 June 1986 drastically decreased our area size, granting us use of Room 224 in Building 305 (209 square feet), Room 112 in Building 113 (226 square feet used as our office), and joint use of Classroom 109 in Building 113.
Amendment 6 dated 18 December 1987 maintained our previous locations but changed our space in Building 305 from Room 224 (209 square feet) to Room 226A (163 square feet.)
On 15 August 1991 ,the Air Force issued us a new contract, Air Force License No. DACA27-3-91-92, which maintained all of the locations allotted to us in DACA-31-3-72-637 Amendment 6.
Sometime in the mid 1990's, our unit lost use of our room in Building 305 and gained our current supply room in Building 113. In 1998, our unit began using the Cafeteria in Building 113 as our primary meeting area while Classrooms 109 and 108 were being remodeled and combined.
In August of 2004, our unit gained use of an additional office in the basement of Building 113 that would be used as a command office while Room 112 became our administrative office.
In August of 2010, work began on converting Building 113 into the new Base Club. During this construction period our unit would meet in Building 305 utilizing the Second Floor Training Room on the south side of the hangar as our primary space and the first floor "Fish Bowl" Training Room on the north side of the hangar. Additionally, we retained our two offices and Supply Room in Building 113 although access was difficult due to distance and ongoing construction.
In May of 2011, our unit lost our supply room in Building 113 and our administrative office was relocated to the opposite end of the hallway in the basement of Building 113.
In December of 2011, our unit gained the former pantry in Building 201 as our new supply room. Over the next month this space was cleaned and renovated to house our supply inventory.
In January of 2012, our unit began using Building 201 as our primary meeting space with usage of the main areas of the building. We also utilized the Base Gym for the first meeting of each month and the renovated Building 113 for the second meeting of each month.
In February of 2012, our administrative office was relocated from Building 113 to the former table storage room in Building 201.
In May of 2012, we relocated our command office from Building 113 into the same table storage room in Building 201. This would consolidate all of our occupied spaces into Building 201.
During the first half of 2014, Building 201 underwent significant renovations which temporarily returned the squadron to Building 113. In July 2014, the squadron moved back into our fully-renovated office, training rooms, and equipment storage in Building 201.