In April 1942, Robert G. Emmens was one of Jimmy Doolittle's Tokyo Raiders as lieutenant and copilot in Crew No. 8. After dropping bombs on Tokyo, Emmens' B-25 made it to a ﬁeld outside of Vladivostok, Soviet Union, and was held captive by the Russians for 13 months until his escape through Persia. Colonel Emmens later wrote a book about his experience as a captive, Guests of the Kremlin.
Colonel Emmens was assigned to command the newly activated 4434th Air Base Squadron which was tasked to supervise construction on the rehabilitation of the Myrtle Beach Air Force Base in 1955. On July 25, 1956, the 342nd Fighter-Day Wing with three squadrons (33rd, 572nd and 573rd) was activated, along with the 342nd Air Base Group. Colonel Emmens was the Wing Commander.
On September 10, 1956, the 342nd Fighter Day Wing received a new commander, Colonel Francis S. Gabreski. Colonel Emmens assumed the role of Deputy Base Commander at that time. Colonel Emmens retired from the United States Air Force in 1964.