The 336 Squadron with callsign "Olympos", was established for the 1st time, on February 25, 1943 at the "Landing Ground 219" airport near Cairo, Egypt. Its first name was 336 "Hellenic Royal Fighter Bomber Squadron". The 336 Sqn was subordinated to the RAF 219 Combat Wing, and it was the second FB Squadron of the Hellenic Royal Air Force.
The squadron was initially equipped with 21 Hurricane-IIC aircraft, and had a total of 309 men, with 26 pilots.
On April 4 1943, it is transferred to the desert, at the LG121 airport, which was located near Sidi Barrani, Egypt, and it stayed there until January 1944. From April 11, 1943 the Squadron was full operational.
The missions were naval convoy protection, interception of hostile aircraft, offensive patrols and ground attack sweeps over Crete.
The Squadron’s main characteristic was the keenness and the willingness of all the pilots to participate in the missions. This led to having draws in order to determine which pilots would take part in the missions, because there were few aircraft and many volunteers. The missions carried out by the Greek pilots too often caused admiration to the allies.
In January 1944, the squadron redeploys to the Libyan airport of El Adem, where it stays until March 1944. Thereafter it redeploys to the Bu Amoud airport for a few days, and since April 1944 to the Marsa Matruh airport of Egypt.
In June 1944 the personnelstarted training to receive the new aircraft type, the Spitfire V. In July once again it redeploys to El Adem airport, where the reception of the new aircraft starts on September.
After a few days, the 336 Sqn is transferred to Italy at Nuova airport and from this base it carries out ground attack missions over Albania, Yugoslavia and occupied Greece.
Next station is the Biferno airport only for a few days and after that the squadron operates all November from Grottaglie airport, until its return to Greece.
It continues operating from Hassani airport against the German forces in Crete, Milos and the Dodecanese.The 336 Squadron during WW II accomplished 3250 missions (day/night), conducting 12427 flight hours, 5116 of which in combat missions and the rest in training. The losses were 12 pilots killed and 3 captives.
In May 1945 it redeploys to Sedes airport in Thessaloniki and takes part in the civil war operations during 1946 – 1949. In February 1949 the 336 Sqn redeploys to Larissa and is integrated to the of 110CW force.
In August 24 it is equipped with the Helldiver vertical attack fighter-bomber, changing its role to Light Bomber Squadron. Following this, it is equipped with the F-84G at Elefsis airport, while at the same time it is renamed to 336 Fighter Bomber Squadron.
On December 28 1953, it redeploys to Nea Anchialos. In 1958 it replaces the F-84G with the new F-84F and in March 1959 it redeploys firstly to 110 CW and then to 116 CW on December 4 1962. On September 25 1963 it is renamed to 336 Strike Squadron.
On January 15 1965, the 336 Strike Sqn with F-104G aircraft is moved to 114CW and at the same time the part of 336 Sqn with the F-84F stays to 116CW. On December 23 1966, the 336 Strike Sqn with the F-104G is moved back from 114 CW to 116 CW.
From December 1966 until March 31st 1993, the 336 Sqn maintained the F-104G aircraft. From this date on, it is renamed to 336 Bomber Squadron and starts receiving the A-7E and TA-7C. With those aircraft types it operates at first as Re-training Flight for the F-104Gs pilots to the new aircraft type A-7E.
The HAF bombing ability was increased with the A-7 aircraft, because of their great capability to carry a heavy weapon load to long distances and deliver it to the target with satisfactory accuracy.After 39 Years in Greek Service,336 Mira are disbanding on 31.10.2014 as the last Corsair Sqd in the World and will receive the F-16 Block 52+ Version like 335 Mira later this Month.The End of the Days for the "Sluf"has finally arrived.
The author would like to thanks the Col. Alexandros Marinos (HAFGS Spokesman), the Maj Apostolos Papadopoulos (Cmdr 336°Sq), all the Personnel from 336 Sq "Olympos", Mr. Tom von Wiegen (German Embassy of Athen).
Images and text by Hans-Juergen Breuer
Translation from original text by Dario Cocco
Produced by Giorgio Ciarini