Grissom AFB was established in 1942 as the Bunker Hill Naval Air Station and remained an active naval training site for both the United States and British Royal Navy pilot training activities throughout World War II. Bunker Hill Naval Air Station was one of 24 stations constructed across the United States in 1942-1943. Before construction began, the base consisted of about ten farmhouses, a number of barns and other farm structures, and numerous acres of agricultural land. All were replaced in one year. The initial construction included hangars, the control tower, parachute loft, paint buildings, assembly and repair shop, general and aircraft storage, and buildings used in connection with the water, heating, and sewage systems. After training thousands of pilots from 1943 to 1945, Bunker Hill Naval Air Station was deactivated in 1946, and facilities were leased to local businesses and agricultural interests. With the advent of the Korean War in 1951, the Air Force needed storage facilities and asked the Navy for use of Bunker Hill Naval Air Station. In 1952, it was given to the Tactical Air Command and the base was transformed for use by jet planes.
In June 1954, the base was officially transferred from the U.S. Navy to the U.S. Air Force and was renamed Bunker Hill Air Force Base. Although the 323rd Fighter Bomber Wing arrived in 1955, there was no flying until the runway was completed in 1956. Bunker Hill Air Force Base was renamed Grissom Air Force Base in 1968 in honor of the late Lieutenant Colonel Virgil Ivan "Gus" Grissom, a native of Indiana and one of America's original seven astronauts.
The base came under the control of the Air Mobility Command in 1992, with the deactivation of SAC. In July 1993, the 305th Air Refueling Squadron ceased flight operations. As part of the Base Closure and Realignment Act of 1991, and subsequent Presidential and Congressional approvals, Grissom AFB was realigned in September 1994. The Air Force Reserve 434th Air Refueling Wing is currently assigned to the base and continues its mission of air refueling operations.
The area surrounding Grissom is predominantly agricultural, with feed corn and soybeans as the major crops. The former Grissom AFB is bound on the north and south sides by farm fields, on the east side by U.S. Highway 31, and on the west side by Grissom ARB. Grissom ARB occupies 1,380 acres while the remaining 1,342 acres are maintained by the Local Redevelopment Authority, Miami County Economic Development Authority (MCEDA). The MCEDA manages properties, approximately 870 acres, located in the Grissom Aeroplex.
Grissom RAB Meeting
When: Info coming soon
Where: Info coming soon
Local Redevelopment Authority
Miami County Economic Development Authority
1525 West Hoosier Blvd
Peru, IN 46970
Phone: (765) 689-0159