Colonel Joseph S. Barton was stationed at Myrtle Beach Air Force Base from August 1988 until the base closed in March 1992. His first association with the base was as an ROTC cadet from the University of Georgia at Summer Camp in the summer of 1970. During his tour at the base while on active duty, he was the Operations Officer and Squadron Commander of the 355th Tactical Fighter Squadron and held several positions on the wing staff during base closure. Colonel Barton was the last active duty pilot assigned to Myrtle Beach Air Force Base.
As Operations Officer of the 355th Tactical Fighter Squadron, Colonel Barton was involved with the squadron''s participation in Operation Desert Shield and Desert Storm in 1990/91. He was involved in the development of night tactics for the A-10 during this time which directly led to the tremendous achievements of
the 354th Tactical Fighter Wing/355th Tactical Fighter Squadron and the A-10 during Desert Storm. On their return from Desert Storm, Colonel Barton was named Commander of the 355th Tactical Fighter Squadron. He remained in this position until the squadron was deactivated as part of the base closure process.
Colonel Barton transferred to Shaw AFB, SC in 1993 where he remained as Commander of the 603rd Combat Operations Squadron until his retirement in March 1996. He accumulated
over 2500 flying hours in the A-10 flying in Arizona, the United Kingdom, Louisiana, South Carolina and Saudi Arabia. The A-10 Colonel Barton flew during Operation Desert Storm, The Dawg Hawg, is now on display at Warbird Park.