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Air Force Reserve and Air National Guard Explained

Kentucky Guardsman of the 123rd Tactical Reconnaissance Wing working on the cameras of an RF-101H at Elmendorf AFB, Alaska. Activated in January 1968, the 123rd TRW conducted operations in Alaska, Panama, Japan and South Korea. (U.S. Air Force Photo)

Kentucky Guardsman of the 123rd Tactical Reconnaissance Wing working on the cameras of an RF-101H at Elmendorf AFB, Alaska. Activated in January 1968, the 123rd TRW conducted operations in Alaska, Panama, Japan and South Korea. (U.S. Air Force Photo)

A Colorado Guardsman greets his family upon returning from South Vietnam. About 10,600 Air National Guardsmen were mobilized in 1968 -- 2,000 went to Southeast Asia (with seven killed in action), and another 4,000 served in South Korea or Japan. (U.S. Air Force Photo)

A Colorado Guardsman greets his family upon returning from South Vietnam. About 10,600 Air National Guardsmen were mobilized in 1968 -- 2,000 went to Southeast Asia (with seven killed in action), and another 4,000 served in South Korea or Japan. (U.S. Air Force Photo)

From July 1970 to January 1971, two EC-121S Super Constellations of the Pennsylvania ANG’s 193rd Tactical Electronic Warfare Squadron flew psychological operations missions in Southeast Asia code named OPERATION COMMANDO BUZZ. (U.S. Air Force Photo)

From July 1970 to January 1971, two EC-121S Super Constellations of the Pennsylvania ANG’s 193rd Tactical Electronic Warfare Squadron flew psychological operations missions in Southeast Asia code named OPERATION COMMANDO BUZZ. (U.S. Air Force Photo)

Air Force Reserve medical team unloads a patient from a C-124. Throughout the war, AFRES medical staff assisted with incoming wounded personnel. Also, in 1968 the AFRES’ 34th Aeromedical Squadron was called to active duty. (U.S. Air Force Photo)

Air Force Reserve medical team unloads a patient from a C-124. Throughout the war, AFRES medical staff assisted with incoming wounded personnel. Also, in 1968 the AFRES’ 34th Aeromedical Squadron was called to active duty. (U.S. Air Force Photo)

 

The Air Force Reserve (AFRES) is a federal reserve component of the U.S. Air Force. The Air National Guard (ANG) is the air militia component of the National Guard of each state or territory (with each state's ANG under the jurisdiction of that state's governor).

AFRES and ANG units can be mobilized for active duty with the USAF by presidential order. ANG units can also be mobilized by their governors for state service in a crisis such as a natural disaster.

Click here to return to the AFRES/ANG Overview.