USAF Patch Intel d 6985 ESS Electronic Security Squadron RC 135
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USAF Patch Intel d 6985 ESS Electronic Security Squadron RC 135

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  • Item #: 1P 02US 4USA 01SQN 2OP 6985SQ 01
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USAF Patch Intel 6985 ESS Electronic Security Squadron 1980s RC 135 Cobra Ball Eielson AB Shemya AB Alaska Velcro Fully embroidered cut edge 99mm by 74mm three and seven eighth inches by two and fifteen sixteenth inches.

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Squadron History´╗┐´╗┐

6985 Communications Security Flight CSF was activated at Elmdorf AFB Alaska in 1955 with Detachment 1 at Ladd AFB Alaska. Det 1 was inactivated in 1956 and 6985 CSF was inactivated in 1958.

6985 Radio Squadron Mobile RSM was activated at Eielson AFB Alaska was activated on 1 July1962 assigned to 6981 Radio Group and redesignated as 6985 Security Squadron on 1 July 1963 with 6981 Security Group. The Squadron was tasked the collection analysis and reporting of photo reconnaissance and electronic signals intelligence SIGINT about Soviet missile test launches and reentry command and control communications countermeasures weapons systems and target acquisition with specialist intelligence personnel known as backenders ravens and crows to operate a variety of sensor equipment aboard RC 135 reconnaissance aircraft flown by pilots and crew from Strategic Reconnaissance Squadrons including the Wanda Belle Rivet Ball and Rivet Amber aircraft missions operating from Eielson AFB and Shemya AFB.

With the activation of 24 Strategic Reconnaissance Squadron at Eielson AFB on 25 March 1967 the 6985 SS provided the on board sensor and intelligence personnel for their RC 135 optical and electronic strategic reconnaissance aircraft to provide near real time on scene intelligence collection analysis and dissemination capabilities to support theatre and national commanders. The Wanda Belle Rivet Ball crash landed at Shemya AFB on 13 January 1969 with the crew unharmed but the aircraft was a write off although most of the electronic equipment was salvageable. The Rivet Amber aircraft disappeared with all nineteen crew and passengers on 5 June 1969 while returning to Eielson from Shemya for routine maintenance. With the loss of the two aircraft the first replacement RC 135S Cobra Ball equipped to monitor missile associated signals track missiles during boost and reentry phases to provide reconnaissance for intelligence theatre ballistic missile proliferation and treaty verification was delivered in October 1969 and the second was delivered in March 1972.

The Squadron was redesignated 6985 Electronic Security Squadron on 1 August 1979 and was reassigned to 6949 Electronic Security Group in January 1980. On 15 March 1981 the Cobra Ball II aircraft crashed into a snowbank attempting to land at Shemya AFB and three members of the 6985 ESS were killed in the crash. The Squadron was reassigned to Electronic Security Strategic on 1 August 1981 Electronic Security Alaska on 1 October 1983 and Pacific Electronic Security Division later 692 Intelligence Wing on 1 June 1989.

6985 Electronic Security Squadron was inactivated on 30 June 1992.

This patch dates from 1991.








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