JOINT BASE LANGLEY-EUSTIS, Virginia –
The 363d Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance Wing recently earned the Air Force Meritorious Unit Award to recognize the organization for outstanding achievement in direct support of combat operations from June 1, 2022, to May 31, 2023.
The MUA is given to Air Force active duty, Reserve, and Guard units for exceptionally meritorious conduct in the performance of outstanding achievement or service in direct support of combat operations for at least 90 continuous days during the period of military operations against an armed enemy of the United States on or after Sept. 11, 2001.
The unit must display such outstanding devotion and superior performance of exceptionally difficult tasks as to set it apart and above other units with similar missions. The degree of achievement required is the same as that which would warrant the award of the Legion of Merit. Superior performance of normal mission will not alone justify the award of the MUA. Service in a combat zone is not required, but service must be directly related to the combat effort. Squadrons, groups, and wings may be recommended for this award.
“This wing, its subordinate organizations, and its mission-aligned Air Reserve Component teammates qualify for the Meritorious Unit Award due to their truly significant support to ongoing U.S. operations in the Middle East, Europe, and the Indo-Pacific theaters,” said U.S. Air Force Colonel John Thorne, 363d ISR Wing commander. “Every day our wing assesses the capabilities of potential adversary weapon systems, enables counterterrorism operations, and provides executable targeting plans to our theater air components’.”
According to Thorne, when this wing was stood up just over eight years ago, some people might have thought combining the Air Force’s targeting, special operations ISR, and advanced intelligence analysis missions would be too difficult.
“It has created a unique unit capable of identifying adversary vulnerabilities and highlighting tactical, operational, and strategic opportunities for key decision-makers,” Thorne said. “In short, when the 363d and our partner wings (480th and 70th ISR Wings) are focused on a problem set, there’s nowhere our adversaries can hide.”
The 363d ISR Wing has received the MUA four previous times:
- June 1, 2015 – May 31, 2016
- June 1, 2016 – May 31, 2017
- June 1, 2017 – May 31, 2018
- June 1, 2021 – May 31, 2021
The wing is assigned to the Sixteenth Air Force, headquartered at Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland, Texas.