German Air Force Patch 74 JG F 104 Starfighter 742 Staffel b
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German Air Force Patch 74 JG F 104 Starfighter 742 Staffel b

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German Air Force Patch JG 74 F 104 Starfighter Fighter Wing 742 Staffel Zapata Interceptor 1970 Neuburg AB Fully embroidered cut edge 120mm by 77mm four and three quarter inches by three inches.

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History

Jagdgeschwader JG 74 Fighter Wing 74 was activated at Neuburg AB on 5 May 1961 equipped with F 86K Sabre fighter interceptors on the redesignation on JG 75. 1 Staffel was tasked with all weather fighter interception air defence cover and was also responsible for the Tactical Training of pilots for 2 Staffel with support from US Flight Instructors from Oldenburg. The Wing was assigned to 1 Luftwaffendivision Air Force Division.  

The Wing comprises a Headquarters and three Groups namely Flying Group Technical Group and Aerodrome Group. Flying Group controls the two flying Squadrons of the Wing 741 and 742. Technical Group provides aircraft technical services including maintenance and repair weapons and ammunition survival equipment fuelling Aerodrome fire protection while Aerodrome Group provides non-aeronautical activities and tasks including transportation supplies Aerodrome security and defence runway and airfield repair. 

JG 74 chose an emblem depicting a stylised white and black delta wing aircraft over a white runway on a blue black disc edged yellow.  

741 Staffel adopted the emblem of a swooping white eagle on a red lightning flash on black shield representing night based on the emblem used by Colonel Wolfgang Falck on his night fighter in WW2. 742 Staffel adopted the name Zapata early in training when their US Instructors referred to their flying as wilder than the Mexican Air Force choosing to be named after the Mexican revolutionary and Lieutenant Eggert designed the Staffels emblem of Zapata smoking a cigar was designed by Lieutenant Eggert. 

741 Staffel began NATO Quick Reaction Alert QRA air defence fighter interception on 5 October 1962 and JG 74 converted to F 104G Starfighter aircraft between 1 July 1964 and 31 December 1965 with the last F 86K sortie taking place on 5 January 1966. 742 Staffel was assigned to NATO air defence operations on 8 January 1968. 742 Staffel received an official visit from the Mexican Attache on 9 September 1971 to formally award the Staffel the title of Zapata and JG 74 was awarded the name Molders on 22 November 1973 in memory of the first German pilot to achieve 100 kills in WW2.  

JG 74 reequipped with F 4F Phantom fighter aircraft in July 1974 and added a secondary role of bombing to its air defence mission with the last F 104 mission taking place on 30 June 1974 and declared combat ready in 1975. The Wing undertook its first deployment to Goose Bay Canada on 5 May 1981. With the end of the Cold War the bombing role was withdrawn and the Wing upgraded to F 4F Increased Combat Efficency ICE standard in the early 1990s.  

The German Military History Institute researched Molders conduct on behalf of the German Government following concerns regarding the use of Molders name for the Wing and concluded that he concurred in his actions with the Nazi government including service in the Legion Condor and never opposed any actions taken by the Nazis. The name Molders was subsequently dropped by JG 74 on 11 June 2005.  

JG 74 transitioned to Eurofighter Typhoon aircraft between 2006 and June 2008 with the last F 4F Phantom retired on 12 June 2008. 

JG 74 became a member of the NATO Tigers on 18 march 2013 as the Bavarian Tigers taking over from Jabog 32s 321 Staffel Lechfield Tigers. 741 and 742 Squadrons attended NATO Tiger Meet NTM 14.

 

This patch dates from 1970.

 

 

 

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