WHEN THE 82ND FIGHTER Group was deactivated on Oct. 2, 1949, it appeared that the fate of Grenier Air Force Base in Manchester was sealed. With the dismantling of this long-range fighter escort unit of the Strategic Air Command, the other components of the 82nd Fighter Wing at Grenier were also discontinued.
These included the support squadrons that operated the military facility. The busy air base that had once had a personnel force of over 1,400 would now be quiet.
However, there would still be a substantial military presence at Grenier, as a portion of airfield property would continue to serve as headquarters of the New Hampshire Air National Guard (NHANG), as it had since its 133rd Fighter Squadron was activated in April 1947.
Manchester’s municipal airport had come under military control in December 1940, and after a short and intense period of…