Douglas C-47B Dakota/Skytrain
Twin-engine transport aircraft.
Already during WWII several Belgian crews were operational in Dakota equipped RAF squadrons (N° 187 and 525 Squadrons at Membury). With the rebirth of the Belgian post war Military Aviation the creation of a transport wing was one of the first priorities and in 1946 the Belgian Government could easily obtain a number of surplus Dakota's through the American "Foreign Liquidation Commission". A large number of transports was needed in order to maintain an operational link with Belgian Congo and to equip locally based units. A first order of 18 ex-USAAF Dakota's was obtained between 1946 and 1947 and delivered at N° 366 Squadron/169 Wing at Evere. (Later N° 20 Squardon/15th Wing). With the addition of some 23 supplementary former RAF Dakota's a second squadron was activated (N° 367 squadron later N° 21 Squadron). Finally no less than 41 C-47B's were active with the Belgian Air Force. With the introduction of the much larger C-119 Flying Boxcar the number of active Dakota's quickly reduced until only a handful were operational with N° 21 Squadron. In 1976 the last of the "Daks" was retired.