Visit Us Museum Shop Junior Aviator Contact Us
Special Exhibitions Upcoming Displays New Acquisitions
Special Exhibition Heritage Gallery Training Hangar Technology Hangar Hangar 180 External Displays Flying Displays Restoration Projects Behind the Scenes
General Events Aircraft Historical 360° Hangar Views
RAAF Badge RAAF Bases RAAF Units Personnel Records RAAF Aircraft
Volunteers Friends

No 37 Squadron

Equipped with Lodestar twin engined transports, No 37 Squadron formed at Laverton, Victoria in July 1943, flying regular courier runs in Australia and New Guinea. Some of the Squadron's runs saw the Lodestars flying journeys in excess of 11,000 kilometres to island bases in the South West Pacific.

After re-equipping with Dakotas the Squadron spent the immediate months following Japan's surrender conveying Australian troops and equipment from island bases throughout the Pacific back to Australia. By 1946, No 37 Squadron was supporting the deployment and maintenance of the British Commonwealth Occupation Forces in Japan. The Squadron returned to Australia in 1949.

After re-equipping with C-130E Hercules in 1966, the Squadron began flying long-range transport missions in support of Australian forces in Vietnam. Apart from the usual troops and equipment, specially rigged Hercules crewed by aero-medical evacuation teams conveyed wounded soldiers back to Australia.

After the Vietnam War, No 37 Squadron continued to fly throughout the region with regular ports of call in Malaysia, Singapore and New Zealand. Civil aid and humanitarian tasks have also played a major part in the Unit's operation - notably the Squadron's role in the evacuation and supply of Cyclone devastated Darwin and the large scale movement of civilians around Australia during a protracted dispute amongst domestic pilots.

In 1999, No 37 Squadron commenced replacement of their C-130E aircraft with the new-generation C-130J, with the last C-130E flight occurring in November of that year. The C-130J is a tactical and multi role transport aircraft providing strategic air support to the Australian Defence Force (ADF) throughout the world, search and survivor assistance, aeromedical evacuation and aid to Australian and neighbouring civil communities, and has been involved in recent military operations and international civil aid.

On 17 November 2006, No 37 Sqn expanded significantly when the Squadron assumed control of the C-130H Hercules fleet previously operated by No 36 Squadron. Today, 37 SQN operate both C-130H and C-130J Hercules aircraft. No 37 Squadron's C-130 fleet also conducts all combat airlift roles except air-to-air refuelling.

back to top back to RAAF units page