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Cavalry and airborne question
The AFV ASSOCIATION was formed in 1964 to support the thoughts and research of all those interested in Armored Fighting Vehicles and related topics, such as AFV drawings. The emphasis has always been on sharing information and communicating with other members of similar interests; e.g. German armor, Japanese AFVs, or whatever.
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SHAWN
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 31, 2006 2:38 am
Post subject: Cavalry and airborne question

when did the airborne (82nd correct?) first get the M551?
how did all of that go down? were they intened to be used in the cavalry role, infantry support, jack of all trades type of thing? they last used them in the first gulf war if i am not mistaken.

shawn
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Chris_C
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 31, 2006 3:39 am
Post subject: Re: Cavalry and airborne question

4/68 Armor in the 82nd Airborne received Sheridans in 1969, and the tank served with the 82nd for over a quarter century. The M551 did serve with divisional cav units and armored cav regiments as well as the airborne (replacing the M41 in the cavalry), that is until late 1978 when they were removed from all units except the 82nd. The M551 was used in Desert Storm, and in Operation Just Cause in 1989.
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Roy_A_Lingle
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 31, 2006 8:50 am
Post subject: Re: Cavalry and airborne question

Hi Shawn! Hi Folks!

- SHAWN
when did the airborne (82nd correct?) first get the M551?
how did all of that go down? were they intened to be used in the cavalry role, infantry support, jack of all trades type of thing?
shawn


When I first joined the Army I was stationed at Ft. Riley, KS. The unit was the 1st Bn (Light) 63rd Armor, 1st Infantry Division (detached) with 54 Sheridans. The reason the battalion was detached from the 1st ID was because the Division was in Vietnam. In the summer of 1969, the battalion was reflaged 4th Bn (Light) 68th (Airborne), 82nd Airborne Division with 48 Sheridans. The battalion lost the two vehicles in each line company HQ section. The vehicles were moved by train from Riley to Bragg.

I spent about a year there. During that time, the battalion was deployed like a standard infantry division tank battalion. One company attached out to each of the three infantry brigades during most field exercises. Most Division field problems had one BCT defending against the other two BCTs. The Battalion Commander had a bad habit of messing over the attacking BCTs. He would take the Scout Platoon (9xM114A1s and 1xM113)and attach the battalion HQ tank section (3 tanks), one M-106 4.2 mortar carrier, two M-548s, and a platoon of Airborne Infantry. One M-548 would carry fuel and other supplies and the other one would carry the infantry.

Our mission was to get behind the attacking BCTs and rise hell in their rear areas. It was a lot of fun. Many of the airborne troopers had no idea what a tank was or how to defend against them. Many of them thought the Sheridan was a SP howitzer. The Division Cavalry Squadron had a few Sheridans (I think it was five or maybe seven, normal would have been nine at that time, and I remember they had less than normal), but they almost never took them to the field. Everyone in the Cav Trp was jump qualified 11B infantrymen. The Army had made the Sheridan an 11E tanker job. Prior to the 4th/68th being assigned to the 82nd, there were almost NO jump qualified 11E enlisted tankers in the Army.

Some of my old history!
Sgt, Scouts Out! Smile

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"You can never have too much reconnaissance."
General G.S. Patton Jr.
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