49 Regiment of Combat Helicopters
49 Regiment of Combat Helicopters in Pruszcz Gdanski
In Poland, the first helicopters for combat tasks were used in the first half of the 60-ies of the twentieth century. In 1965, decisions were made to form combat regiments equipped with helicopters. In 1965, it was decided to liquidate the 25th Regiment of Fighter Aircraft, which was based at the Pruszcz Gdański airport. The regiment was then equipped with PZL Lim-5 fighters (MiG-17 F). In 1967, the 49th Regiment of Helicopters was created. The first commander of the new unit was the last commander of the 25th Regiment of Fighter Aviation, Lieutenant Colonel Henryk Bajor. Already on 19 February 1968, Lieutenant Colonel Jerzy Knyszewski became the new commander of the 49th Regiment of Helicopters.
The first helicopters were delivered to Pruszcz Gdański in February 1968. these were PZL Mi-2 helicopters, which were produced in Świdnik. In June 1968, the 49th Regiment took part in the first military exercises. 49. The Helicopter Regiment took part in the invasion of Czechoslovakia. Helicopters were based at the airport in Hradec Kralove.
The 49th Regiment of Helicopters took part in all exercises organized by the Polish Army and the Warsaw Pact.
On October 14, 1969, the 49th Regiment received a flag.
On July 1, 1971, the Regiment was moved into the structures of the Aviation Land Forces, as the 49th Aviation Regiment of Land Forces.
In 1977, PZL Mi-2 helicopters were armed with anti-armored guided missiles 9M14 Malutka. Helicopters with these missiles were marked PZL Mi-2URP.
Placing Mi-24 combat helicopters in Leźnica Wielka, where transport helicopters were stationed, was illogical. That is why the squadron was relayed to the 49th Regiment of Combat Helicopters (Pruszcz Gdański). At the same time, the regiment changed its name to the 49th Regiment of Combat Helicopters. The number of Mi-24 helicopters grew, to 16 helicopters in 1985.
At the beginning of the 1990s, the Regiment was reorganized, reducing the number of squadrons and keys. At that time, the Regiment had Mi-24 D, Mi-24 W, Mi-8, Mi-2 helicopters in stock.
On June 15, 1996, the Regiment received a new flag.
In 2005-2008, soldiers of the regiment took part in a military mission in Iraq (IV, V and VIII change), and in 2007-2008 in a mission in Afghanistan (III change).
On December 31, 2011, the 49th Regiment was disbanded, and as of 1 January 2012, the 49th Air Base was composed of the First Aviation Brigade of Land Forces.
Commanders: Lt. Col. pil. Henryk Bajor (November 1967 - February 19, 1968), Col. dyp.pil. Jerzy Knyszewski (February 19, 1968 - September 5, 1972), Lt. Col. dyp.pil. Aleksander Szeluk (September 5, 1972 - May 14, 1976), Col. dyp.pil. Józef Gomółka (May 14, 1976 - December 10, 1983), Col. dyp.pil. Waldemar Szlachta (December 10, 1983 - June 20, 1990), Col. dyp.pil. Zbigniew Nawrocki (June 20, 1990 - June 14, 1996), Col. dyp.pil. Jerzy Świs (June 14, 1996 - 1999), Col. dyp.pil. Dariusz Wroński (1999 - 2006), Col. dyp.pil. Adam Trzeciak (2007-2011) until the moment of reformation in the 49th Air Base in the 1st Aviation Brigade of Land Forces), Col. pil. Piotr Saniuk (2012 -) First commander of 49th Air Base 1 BLWL.
Written by Karol Placha Hetman