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10th Air Defense Artillery Brigade
32nd AADCOM

Looking for more information from military/civilian personnel assigned to or associated with the U.S. Army in Germany from 1945 to 1989. If you have any stories or thoughts on the subject, please contact me.


History (19..-19..)

10th Gp AADCP

Missile Control Center

1st Bn, 1st ADA

2nd Bn, 2nd ADA

3rd Bn, 59th ADA

2nd Bn, 62nd ADA

6th MSL Bn, 517th Arty

6th MSL Bn, 562nd Arty

Tac Sites Early 1960s

Tac Sites Early 1970s

Tac Sites Early 1980s


Patch worn from 1960 to 1966

Patch worn from 1966 to late 1980s (?)

REUNION - All HAWK Units

Sept 6 - 10, 2007

Related Links

 
History
1960 - 1992
10th ADA Brigade DI
HHB, 10th Artillery Group was activated on 1 July 1960 at Munich.

10th Arty Group (AD) was located at Will Kaserne in Munich in the early 1960s.

In December 1961, 6th Msl Bn, 61st Arty was deployed to Germany and attached to the 10th Arty Gp.

In January 1964, the Bn was detached from the 10th and attached to the 69th Arty Gp.

(Webmaster note: based on a review of STATION LISTS for late 1963 and early 1964, it appears that the 10th Arty Gp moved from Munich to Ernst Ludwig Kaserne in Darmstadt in the 1st Quarter of CY 1964. This would explain the changes in the OOB of the Group in that period.)

The 10th ADA Brigade was inactivated on July 15 1992 in Darmstadt.

 
(Source: Seventh Army Troop and Station List, 1 Aug 1964)
10th ARTY GP ORGANIZATION AND STATIONS (Aug 1964) :

KSN / LOCATION

UNIT COMMENTS
Ludwig Ksn, Darmstadt HHB, 10th Arty Gp  
 

Fliegerhorst Ksn, Hanau HHB, 6th MSL Bn, 59th Arty  
Fliegerhorst Ksn, Hanau Btry A
Babenhausen Ksn, Bab. Btry B  
Hesse-Homburg Ksn, Hanau Btry C
Airfield, Finthen Btry D
Fliegerhorst Ksn, Hanau 223rd Ord Det

QM Depot, Giessen HHB, 6th MSL Bn, 517th Arty
Rivers Bks, Giessen Btry A
McPheeters Bks, Hersfeld Btry B  
Schloss Ksn, Butzbach Btry C
Air Base, Rothwesten Btry D
Rivers Bks, Giessen 516th Ord Det

Schloss Ksn, Butzbach HHB, 6th MSL Bn, 562nd Arty
Camp Wildflecken, Wild. A Btry  
Camp Wildflecken, Wild. B Btry  
Ray Bks, Friedberg C Btry  
Downs Bks, Fulda D Btry
Ray Bks, Friedberg 512th Ord Det

 
1961
(Source: Email from Cooper Abrams, HHB, 10th AAA Gp)
I was assigned to the 10th Artillery Group in the fall of 1961 as a communications specialist and was the Communications Chief of the Communicatons Center stationed at Will Kaserne as a Sp4. Our Commo officer was Charles M. Hughes, Capt. Officers were Roy H. McAdoo, W3. When I was sent to Germany I had orders to a Hawk missile battery that was to be stationed at 6th Msl Bn, 57th Arty, at Schleissheim, Germany just outside Munich. However the unit was not there and to my knowledge was never activated. At Schleissheim, I received new orders to report to 10th Artillery Group Headquarters, Headquarters Battery. When I arrived the unit had only been activated a short time. The 10th was under the 32th Artillery, 7th Army and their HQ was in Kaiserslautern, Germany.

We had an Aviation Section in Schleissheim with two to three helicopters (H-13 and H-34) and two fixed wing aircraft (one L19 and one L20 Beaver). Will Kaserne was a mounted artillery base and part of the 24th Inf. Div. Several months before I arrived the CO, Exec and one or two other were killed in an aircraft accident. I think the CO who was killed was Col. Lighner. Not positive about that though.

When I arrived and all time I was there we had three Hawk units operational at this time. Dachau, Grafenwöhr and Augsburg. I can't remember the units but I think the 61st was at Grafenwöhr, the 62nd at Augsburg, and 60th at Dachau. I have records and could probably look it up if you need the info.

I was assigned there two years. I have a number of stories of duty there, including one in which I was flying with Maj. Kirligher (pilot) and a SFC (co-pilot) in the L19 when it caught fire on a trip back from Grafenwöhr .

Another was one of my men (Sp4 Barhite) who worked in the Com Center was on guard duty and tripped a grenade that was set by one the men from the 24th Inf. Div. He was severely injured and was flown to Walter Reed.

I had no idea there as anything on the 10th on the web, but just out of curiosity did a search and found your site.


HAWK at Ernst Luwig Kaserne, Darmstadt, 1964 (William Jarrett)
 

HAWK at Ernst Luwig Kaserne, Darmstadt, 1964 (William Jarrett)
 
1964
(Source: Email from William Jarrett, HHB, 10th Arty, 1964)
I was assigned to the Group HQ in Darmstadt (Ernst Ludwig Kaserne) in 1964. When I got there I was assigned to the motor pool under SSG Franklin.

I remember the group had a RDPC (radar data processing center) on top of a mountain outside of Butzbach. We had acquired a 5,000 gallon tanker from the Air Force to always have enough diesel fuel to run the generators for the radar. During the spring thaw, it was parked too near the edge of the parking area and the soil gave way and spilled all 5,000 gallons of diesel fuel down the mountain, not to mention the trees it destroyed and the stream it contaminated. It took a lot of explaining from our Group Commander Col. Jules DuParc to get the people off the hook. Some of the officers and enlisted did get a reprimand.

The few months I was in Darmstadt were very enjoyable.
 

Fuel tanker accident at the RDPC site near Butzbach (William Jarrett)
 
The RDPC sat on the top of a mountain that had been leveled off and contained about 1 1/2 acres. The radar was contained in a radome and was operated from onsite. The monitors were also interconnected with AADCP headquarters and also the Air Force radar sites in northern Germany.

Our site was primarilly for monitoring air traffic in East Germany. Our Hawk missile bateries had direct communication with the RDPC 24/7 and we had a senior grade officer in charge of the RDPC. If ever the time happened, all bearings, altitudes, speeds and type of aircraft would be relayed to the appropriate Hawk batteries.

The mountain top site had 3 or 4 1000kw diesel generators. One was always on line with another one on "hot standby" in the event the online generator failed. The others were in maintenance so at the end of 12 hours they would be ready to replace the online and hot standby.

The only personnel that were at the site were the ones needed to keep the operation going. A shift was 24 hours on and then off for 48. During the off shift time the personnel would return to the Kaserne in Butzbach.

All of the Hawk batteries were positioned throughout the eastern part of Germany along the border with East Germany. I do not remember if there was a battery at the RDPC site but I do not think so.

I also do have some pictures of the fuel tanker after it rolled down the mountain.

 
1965
(Source: Email from Ed Kessler, HHB, 10th Arty, 1965-66)
I was a radio operator stationed at HHB of the 10th Artillery Group in Darmstadt from March 1965 until July 1966.

I was drafted into the Army in July 1964. I went through basic training at Fort Polk LA, then to radio school at Fort Jackson SC, and on to radio teletype school at Fort Gordon GA before going to Germany.

I had German in 9th and 10th grades. I also had a ham radio technician license. In basic training I was asked what job would I like and if stationed overseas, where would I like to be stationed. I said that I would like to be a radio operator and be stationed in Germany. I was surprised as a draftee to get both. (Later, while in Germany, I was used sometimes out in the field as an interpreter because I knew the language.) So, after finishing radio schools, I took a "cruise" to Germany aboard the USNS Upshur (8 days in the North Atlantic in February). After arriving at the port of Bremerhafen, we were transferred to trains. My ultimate destination was Darmstadt. After arriving at the Hauptbahnhof in Darmstadt, a duty driver drove me to the Ernst Ludwig Kaserne where I was assigned as a radio operator to the HHB of the 10th Artillery Group.

When I thought of Germany, I thought of a lot of snow. I was surprised to find only about one inch of snow on the ground at the kaserne. We had no more snow that winter.

As the new kid on the block, I was assigned the duty of helping some of the Germans who stoked the coal fires for the Kaserne heating and hot water systems. This activity took place in the basement of one of the buildings. I helped shovel the coal into the furnaces. It was not a bad job in that the Germans did most of the work. I worked overnight and was finished by 6:00 AM. This gave me the rest of the day off. I had no other jobs during that timeframe.

At radio school at Fort Jackson, SC, I had code practice up to 8 hours a day. When I got to Germany, I used Morse code (CW) a total of one time in the 16 months that I was there. On a morning net, the net control station indicated that we would use Morse code during the afternoon net. None of the other radio operators wanted to try their hand at CW. As a ham radio operator, I had been used to copying CW, so I stepped forward to conduct the net. I had to originate a message in CW using 5-letter code groups. I cannot forget the message. It went something like this: "short timer going home".

As a radio operator, we conducted daily high frequency radio nets with our subordinate units (the 59th, 517th and the 562nd BNs). However, if at any time we lost our primary microwave communication with our subordinate units, we would have to get in contact by high frequency radio. There must have been a half dozen times that I was awoken at two or three in the morning and told to go out to the motor pool and fire up the radio van that was mounted on a deuce and a half.

We also had surprise readiness tests that sometimes occurred at two or three in the morning. I had to bring the truck from the motor pool and park it on the wash rack so that we could load our equipment from the section room. There were a couple of times that the fog was so thick that I had to get SP4 Donald Lagamba, my shotgun, to walk next to the front bumper so we could see where we were going. We did not leave the Kaserne. Another time there was a shortage of gas and again we did not leave the Kaserne during the readiness test.

Two of the personnel in the communication center volunteered to go to Vietnam. This left two openings and I was moved up to the comm center to work there. We went on 12 hour shifts. At 2:00 AM it could get very boring. Working from midnight to noon could really throw you off schedule.

In our signal section, we had a clipboard adorned with a set of doorknobs. These doorknobs had been sent over from the "Land of the Big PX" long before I arrived in Germany. A short timer in our section carried this clipboard around with their out-processing papers. This was a badge of honor.

I returned to the "Land of the Big PX" on another "cruise" ship, the USNS Darby. I finished my college education at Penn State and went to work at Xerox Corporation in Rochester NY.

 
(Source: Email from James E. Maxwell, 1966-68)
I served with the 10th Gp. from 1966 until 1968. Just today I was doing a search for Ernst Ludwig Kaserne and saw pictures of the base today . All the original structures except for one are gone and have been replaced by housing units and the area renamed Ernst Ludwig Park. I have many good memories of my time in Darmstadt. While there I met and later married a German girl. We are still married and I have been able to take her to nearly every state in this great country of ours. She is now a citizen and considers this her true home. If you have ever watched the Dr. Phil show, you have heard him talk about defining moments in ones life. That moment for me was when I stepped off that plane in Germany in 1966.

It all started at Fort Bliss, Texas in May 1966. In the class that I was assigned to, I was trained to work in missle fire control. Everyone in the class had a severe hearing loss in one ear but that was an advantage in this job because a headset was worn using our good ear and we were not bothered by backround noises.

I arrived in Germany in early August of 1966 and was sent to the 10th Gp. at Ernst Ludwig Kaserne. The people in charge of assignments told me that there were no openings in my M.O.S. at that time. They also told me that this job was at a remote base which was snowbound in winter with not much to do in your spare time. I had scored well in the mechanical tests I had taken when I entered the service. They offered to let me take on the job training for 8 weeks and change my M.O.S. to Motor Pool Mechanic. By doing that I would stay at Ernst Ludwig and would be assigned to Headquarters Battery 10th Gp.

Things went well at the Motor Pool and after several monthes I was offered a part time job with the inspection team that checked the missile sites. I was able to get the needed Top Secret clearance to go on these sites. At about the same time I purchased a VW auto to allow me to get out and see some of the country. Because of my T.S. clearance I was the assigned driver for the ammo truck which was kept at the NIKE site at Griesheim. We were on training alert near Darmstadt one rainy night and I decided to sleep in the back of the ammo truck instead of a wet 2-man tent. The next morning our 1st Sgt. discovered me and gave me hell in front of the rest of the men.

One of my buddies in the motor pool was dating a German girl and he made arrangements to hook me up with her girlfriend. We met at an American bar in Darmstadt and after meeting her parents and a 6 month courtship we started the paperwork to get married. She was working for a well to do family in Darmstadt taking care of their 5 children. She was from a small town in the Saarland and wanted to work in a larger city. Her father was a disabled veteran who was injured on the eastern front near Stalingrad. On a visit to Darmstadt he showed me where he stayed at Cambrai-Fritsch Kaserne during the war.

While serving in Germany I was able to use my leave time to visit France, Switzerland, Italy, Holland, Denmark, Sweden and Norway. The paperwork needed to get married kept me very busy but we had all of it together in December 1967 and were married later that month. I left Germany in February 1968 and my new bride joined at JFK after my discharge.

I would like to find a fellow soldier who served with 10th GP. and was getting married to a Belgian girl. His name was Dennis Doran. He worked in the Supply section and took care of the arms room. This has been a general overview of my time with the 10th GP.
James Maxwell

1970
(Source: Email from Rodney L. Maedke, HQ 10th Arty Gp, 1970-1972)
I was assigned to the HQ/HQ Btry, 10th Artillery Group at Ernst Ludwig Kaserne late 1970-mid Jan 1972.

I was in the S2 for a short time and then sent to S4 Signal where I was a clerk typist NOT MY ORIGINAL MOS. Original training was Vulcan/Chapparal missiles. I also was assigned Duty Driver delivering twixes to Cambrai Fritsch Kaserne.

I have pictures of the kaserne. In S4 my Master Sargent was by the name Deliles (may be misspelled); my Officer in charge (OIC) was Capt. Rolfus. I believe Capt.Rolfus was sent to Nam and I later heard he was killed there. Is it possible for you to confirm this on such little info?

I posted in your Guestbook on 7/23/08

1. Main gate (165 KB)

2. Post gym (151 KB)

3. Mess hall & barracks (149 KB)


4. Maedke starting generator (102 KB)


 

10th Group AADCP
AADCP - Griesheim (19.. - 19..)
(Source: Email from Daniel Manus)
I have read the letter that Mike Orivets wrote over and over. I finally remembered him.

When I first got to 10th GP ADA Jan 1974 I was assigned to the UP's (Unit Police) under S2, which got changed to security force. We patrolled ELK and controlled the gate. I was moved to GTOC by the Spring of 1974. Since I was a 16J10 Early Warning Radar Operator that is where I should have been from the beginning or at one of the Bn or Line Brty.

GTOC was under Full Bird Croneous (sp?) office in the basement -- we called it the Dungeon. We updated the Cmdrs. board for the equipment status. At that time we were only GTOC and GCC Group tactical operations center and group command center . In late 1975 we built a war room and tactical center across the street from the SGT-Majors office for the sole purpose of running Operation WINTEX war games 1976.

After the games were over we moved out to Griesheim, near the Aviation site across from Stars & Stripes newspaper. Then we became the WMC, GCC, MCC, GTOC. S-3 took over updating the Cmdr's. board. We built a new War room in a building on the Radar site.

I have run across some of the guys that I was stationed with since I left Germany Dec 1976.  I wish I could find more of them. (I think I have found one of the guys that was in my section in 10 GP on military.com under 32nd ADA. I hope to hear from him.)

I have lost all my pictures about 200 or more from Germany in my many moves. 

Here are some of the names I remember from my section:  WO-1 Howard Burns; SFC Fred Hair; STAFF SGT Mike Sedelmire; SGT Mike Jembarski; SGT Donald Hamilton; SGT Richard Gates; SGT Danny Absher; SP4 Joellen Travis; SP4 Dallas Kinsley; SP4 Linda Pounds; SP4 Margery Gross.

We were a very tight and proud group. There were several more who's names I can't remember. 

SGT Daniel Manus US ARMY 1973-1979; 1973 Ft Polk La.; 1973 Ft Bliss Tx.; Jan 1974 -Dec 1976 Darmstadt Germany; Jan 1977 Aberdeen Md;  April 1977 thru May 1979 Ft Louis Wa. 

I hope that gives you a little more insite on 10th GP ADA .

(Source: Email from Mike Oravitz)
I was with the 10th ADA Gp from April 1975 through May 1978. I worked in the S3.

As I recall (remember this was almost 30 years ago!), we had no “AADCP” per se; we had a “MCC”, which was the Missile Control Center located in Griesheim as I recall. It was manned by 10th Gp soldiers. There was also a remote site located real far north with a handful of soldiers. They were so far away out in the boonies they only came in once every couple months. I can’t remember the name of the place they were in, but it will come to me eventually.

Can’t remember much about the equipment at the MCC since I was out there so infrequently. I was out there during a WINTEX exercise in about 1976 or so. The 10th ADA Gp NATO mission was under control of AAFCE: Allied Air Forces, Central Europe. The units under the 10th Gp at that time were 1/1 ADA, 2/2 ADA, 3/59 ADA and 2/62 ADA. 1/1 was in Butzbach I think, 2/2 was in Giessen, 3/59 in Hanau, and 2/62 in Spangdahlem, down south near the French border.

Each Bn had 3 or 4 firing batteries. I remember this big stupid board that the S-3 had to update for the Group Cdr – It had all the firing batteries listed (in grease pencil!) and we tracked unit status, especially those on “hot”, or 5 minute alert status. When they had equipment outages, we had to “post” the COL’s board. Anytime a unit on hot status had a major outage that prevented them from being hot, we had permission to enter the Gp Cdr’s office and post the board immediately, regardless of who was with the Col, even if it was the 32d AADCOM Cdr.

Speaking of which, the 32d was located in Kaiserslautern when I got to Germany; they moved to Darmstadt shortly thereafter. MG Robert Fye was the commander.

C Company, 11th Signal had towers and relay systems right on Ernst Ludwig Kaserne. They also operated the entire commo system and the message center (where “TWX’s” came in). MAJ Leo Charron was the Gp Commo Officer.

Right up the street from ELK was a real small kaserne, Kelly Barracks. Mostly engineers there I think. Then of course Cambrai-Fritsch about 2 minutes from there. The S-3 also had an aviation section assigned to it that supported the Gp, located also in Griesheim I think it was. Was adjacent to the Stars and Stripes office.

Missile Control Center, CRC ???
MCC - Freising (19.. - 1974?)
Email from Donald P. Moriarty, II - 10th Arty Gp, 1962-65)
Email moved to Missile Control Centers, Overview Page, Air Defense section

MCC - Giebelstadt (1974? - 19..)

 
1st Bn, 1st ADA (prev. 6th MSL Bn, 562nd Arty)
 
(Source: Stars & Stripes, European edition, November 2, 1964)
HAWK Missile Crew in West Germany


follow link to view photos from the Stars & Stripes archives

1966
(Source: Email from Jack Miller, HHB, 1966-68)
I was in the HHB of the 562nd in Butzbach from the middle of 1966 to the middle of 1968. I arrived in Butzbach in July of 1968. There were about 80 of us coming from AIT at Fort Bliss. We came on what I believe was the last troop ship to take troops to Germany, the USNS Geiger. When it left Germany it went to the west coast to ferry troops to Nam. We took a train from Bremerhaven and got to Butzbach around 8:00 on a Sunday morning. They divided us up and I ended up in HHB in the S3.

We had the BOC in Butzbach, two batteries in Wildflecken, one in Fulda and one in Friedberg. After all that training as a Fire Control Crewman they kept me as a Clerk Typist. Then they made me a Radio Operator and I ended up as the Battalion CBR NCO. I went to the field a lot as an umpire when any of the batteries went for training.
 
I found a place to rent with a German family and my wife came over about a month after I got there. Our first child was born in Frankfurt. We really have a lot of great memories. We have been back a couple of times and Butzbach is not the sleepy little picturesque place it was when we were there. There is a multi-story parking structure next to the bahnhof. I understand that most of the Kaserne was torn down. I think all they left was the gym by the front gate.

(Source: Email from Richard Birely)
I was assigned to C Btry 6th Battalion, 562 Artillery, stationed at Friedburg Germany from 1967 to March 1969. I was a Pulse Radar Technician in the HAWK Unit.

I have tried many times to find out what happened to my old unit, but so far nothing. When I left Germany in 1969, there was talk of putting the equipment on tracks and becoming a very mobile unit. As it was, we were a somewhat mobile wheel unit. Our site equipment ran off of portable generators all of the time and we were supposed to be able to go into the field at a moments notice. That made for some real problems at times. Anyway, we had a battery commander who was a real pain in the butt.

All in all, it was an experience I won't forget.

1970
A/6/562nd Self Propelled Hawk Missile Battery, Bad Kissingen, Germany, 1970
  Tactical Site: Reiterswiesen
Photos of the Bad Kissingen site:
former tactical site #1 (A)
 
  Mobile Deployment Area: ?  

B/6/562nd Self Propelled Hawk Missile Battery, Camp Wildflecken, Germany, 1970
  Tactical Site: Wildflecken Training Area
Photos of the Wildflecken site:
former tactical site #1 (A)
former tactical site #2 (A)
 
  Mobile Deployment Area: ?  

(Source: Email from Luciano J. Ercolini)
C/6/562nd Self Propelled Hawk Missile Battery, Fulda, Germany, 1970-1971

  Tactical Site: Finkenberg Hill
Recent arial photos of the Finkenberg site:
former tactical site #1 (A)
former tactical site #2 (A)
 
  Mobile Deployment Area: Sickels  

(A) From the German Osthessen News website (www.osthessen-news.de)

The other batteries at this time:
A Battery — Bad Kissingen
B Battery — Wildflecken
Headquarters —- Butzbach

People I remember during my service in Fulda:

Lt. John McFarland
Lt. David Eaton
Lt. John Slonina
Lt. Ken Fess
Lt. George Wiklund
Lt. Bob Occhi
Lt. Luciano J. Ercolini (me)
Capt. Charles Ronald

WO Bob McKenzie
WO John Gilliland

Sgt. Morris Acord
Sgt. Okeefe
Sgt. Del Castillo
Sgt. Hannigan
Sgt. Gooche
Sgt. Owens
Sgt. Bates
Sgt. Ford
Sgt Walker

After Hawk Missile Training at Ft. Bliss I arrived in Fulda early in 1970. We stayed at the Europa Hotel for a week or so outside the Fulda Kaserne where one of the officers would pick me up and deliver me to the Tac Site at Finkenberg Hill. There were three brand new second lieutenants (me, George Wiklund and Bob Occhi) who were to replace the other officers who were due to rotate. We spent the first month or so studying the tactical regulations so that we could be TCO certified and be able to pull 24 hour duty on the tactical site. The three of us instantly developed great comraderay as we studied those dry regulations, took walks about the tac site and in good spirits took the jocularity that brand new second lieuies’ had to absorb. It was part of the initiation ritual till we earned our stripes.

Some of us lived in Army quarters and others lived on the economy. My wife and I lived in an apartment in Sickels. The owners, Helmut and Inge lived on the first floor and we on the second. It was all new and nicely furnished and comfortable. I remember sleeping in featherbeds and negotiating rooms with severely slanted ceilings. Soon we adapted to the best the military and the German economy had to offer.

John McFarland was our CO. John had an incisive sense of humor and during his weekly battery meeting he would pretty much keep us all in stitches. Later Cpt. Ronald took over and things got a bit more serious.

On Tac Site we would be ever vigilant for the EMMO teams from battalion, group and 32nd AADCOM. At the battalion level there was a CW3, Mr. Woods, who had absolutely no sense of humor and preyed on new TCO’s. It was a Saturday; John had just concluded his battery meeting; it was my first TCO duty (which meant I knew relatively nothing) and Mr Woods called us for a battery ORE with gas masks. So, there we were, five of us with gas masks plus two evaluators in the cramped BCC. Red buttons on and off, cursors sweeping, barking orders into gas masks, not being able to hear much of anything and sweating big time all the while Mr. Woods standing six inches from me, expressionless and mean. The ORE was pretty much of a disaster and I had the pleasure of reliving the humiliation in front of my crew as Mr. Woods gave the out briefing in great detail in the cafeteria. Some hours later when the furor had subsided, I got a call from Cork 5……”Lieutenant why did you f… u…..the ORE?” Cork 5 was the battalion XO whose name I forgot but we later became friends and would laugh profusely as he recounted the episode at my expense, of course.

Life in an SP Hawk Missile Battery was pretty much maintenance and training. Equipment always broke down and we were forever dispatching vehicles for parts. The year was a constant preparation for inspections and exercises by various headquarters: CMMI, Tactical Evaluations, ORE’s and Battery Missile Firings in Crete.

The last couple of years of duty I spent at 10th Group Headquarters in Darmstadt which is another story.

Luciano J. Ercolini

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION
The Self Propelled Missile Battery consisted of:

a) two self propelled platoons
b) one towed platoon
c) generator section (45kw generators)
d) motor pool section
e) radar section-continuous wave, pulse, doppler
f) missile maintenance section (under the direction of warrant officers)
g) headqarters, supply, barracks, mess...etc. (at Downs Barracks for C Battery)

Missile batteries performed their mission under three statuses: 5 minute (hot), 3 hour, and 12 hour. Hence they were to be able to fire a missile at a hostile target within that time period. Each platoon would have 24 hour duty on the tac site and have the following day off. So, there was a constant rotation of personnel. Often the "hot" battery would go down due to equipment outages and the 3 hour battery would have to come up to hot status. It was a dynamic situation. During hot status batteries would run on generator power and other times they would use commercial electricity.

Once a year each battalion had to undergo a tactical evaluation. These evalations generally lasted a week and each unit was evaluated in all phases of their operations to insure capacity to meet assigned mission. Wartime scenarios were transmitted from the originating headquarters through the battalions to the batteries where evaluators would gauge performance. For SP Hawk units mobility was an imortant phase, so one of the paltoons had to be deployed to their mibile site, Sickels for C Battery, and be operational within three hours. Full integration of that platoon with the tac site was an important phase. The whole tactical evaluation season probably occupied several months of the units time.

Once a year each unit had to successfully engage a target at the Nato firing range in Crete. The most proficient crew was selected from each battery and would undergo about a month of simulator training. Then they would be flown to Crete for a week and go through the preparations, testing and firring at an incoming drone. It was an important event as that unit had to live with success or failure for a year. During my service duty in Germany I recollect only one unit which failed.

The SP Hawk Battery had two firing sections: one being towed launchers and the other being on self propelled tracks. The third SP Platoon was on standby and usually lined up on an alternate area of the tac site ready for mobile deployment. Each day the arriving duty and standby platoon would arrive at 8:00 am and relieve the overnight platoon. System checks would be preformed till about 11:00 am. Hot lunch served at noon. Training classes in the afternoon might be scheduled. Six hour checks performed at 2:00 pm, 8:00 pm...etc.

Standby platoon would leave at 4:00 pm and the cycle would begin anew. After 4:00 pm and on week ends there was a lot of personal time for reading, chatting, sleeping etc.

Warrant officers were in charge of the maintenance of the battery. Much of their time was spent in testing the missiles as all had to be checked every ninety days, I believe. Each battery had about 80 missiles. So each missile had to be removed from pallets and launchers and brought to an indoor testing area. An officer always had to be present when missiles were moved... so the logistics were always time consuming.

At Sickels we used a large fenced field. It was used for training and deployment of the third SP Platoon.Cannot remember whether it was adjacent to the airfield or not. Also, in those days Sickels was a tiny hamlet, basically the intersection of two roads amidst a farming area. Although the entire battery was mobile I never saw any plans for it to move to secondary locations in the event of hostilities. Never saw any airlift capabilities in place. When later I participated in Nato wide exercises by the third day of hostilities the forward edge of the battle area was determined to be at Frankfurt.

The last year and a half I was stationed at 10th Group Headquarters at S3. We did the training and evaluation at group level so I had the opportunity to travel to all the batteries from Kassel to Wurzburg to Bitgurg/Trier. I had a wonderful time but more than that it was a unique and invaluable experience for a young man.


(Source: Email from Wayne Harris)
I was stationed in Wildflecken with B-1-1 (B Battery 1st BN 1st ADA) but I left in the first part of 1973. I was a Spec 4 and
worked in the Hawk Maintenance Shop as the TRAMMS clerk. Just before I left I worked as the mail clerk. 

Here is a link to my pictures and info --
http://imageevent.com/wharris19/armydays

1. Entrance to B Btry Bldg, Camp Wildflecken (KB)

2. Pallet (KB)

3. Hawk maintenance shop on site (KB)


4. (KB)

5. (KB)

6. (KB)
 

7. Loader and missile containers (KB)

8. (KB)

9. Camp Wildflecken (KB)
 

10. Camp Wildflecken (KB)


 

1974
(Source: Email from Jeff Alberhasky, BOC, 1st Bn, 1st ADA)
I was a Spec 4 stationed at the BOC, 1st Bn 1st ADA at Downs Barracks, Fulda from 1974-1975. Thought you might be interested in using these photos on your great site. The following photos were taken by me during my tour with 1st Bn 1st ADA Battalion Operations Central attached to C-Btry.

Inside the OC Van
 
I was a Spec 4 stationed at the BOC, 1st Bn 1st ADA at Downs Barracks, Fulda from 1974-1975. Thought you might be interested in using these photos on your great site. The following photos were taken by me during my tour with 1st Bn 1st ADA Battalion Operations Central attached to C-Btry.





IMAGE (left): Inside the heart of the Battalion Operations Central (BOC).
The AN/TSQ-38 Operations Central (OC) Van that was fed by the long range rader. Its job was to aquire targets at long range and assign these targets to one of the missile batterys for engagement.

1. DSP sign (KB)

2. Alberhasky at console in OC (KB)

3. BOC trailer (KB)


4. OC van (KB)

5. South side of the C-Btry missile site (KB)

6. Spec 4 "Dino" Hemmit (KB)
 

(Source: Email from Charles W. Talley, 1st Bn, 1st ADA BOC)
From Sep 1974 to Jun 1978, first as a Wobbly 1 and later as a CW2, I ran the radar and operations center repair facility for the 1/1 ADA, Battalion Operations Center (BOC). I was actually assigned and processed in through the 1/1 ADA, HHB in Butzbach, but I was assigned for duty at the BOC in Fulda. We shared barracks area with C Btry, 1/1 ADA on Downs Bks, Fulda which was actually controlled by the 11th Armored Cav. We also shared C Btry's tactical site which was on a hilltop about 4 miles from the Kaserne.

You can take the "?" mark off "site designation" for the BOC, because we moved the BOC from Fulda to Wildflecken in Aug 76. We had surveyed the possible move several times during the summer of 1976, but no definite plans had been announced. In the first week of Aug, we went to the field for 10 days and when it came time to go home, it was announced that instead of returning to Fulda, the BOC would go directly to Wildflecken and set up permanent operations there. It was one hell of a winter. We arrived tired and dirty at a hilltop close to B Btry, 1/1 ADA on about Aug 15th and within a week, we got our first snow. The snow did not fully melt until late April of the following year.

We had our full compliment of trucks, mobile vans, generators and other equipment and we eventually managed to use caterpillar tractors to drag two Code H trailers up the hill. We used them as the only 2 "buildings" that we had on site. One was used as an operations room and the other served as a ready room. Even with the heaters going, it stayed so cold inside the trailers that the moisture in the air would freeze to the heads of the screws that held the trailer walls together. It looked like rows of little crystal flowers on the walls. As quickly as we could we built a plywood latrine and a shed to keep the snow off of the generators, but other than that we did not have any permanent structures on-site for the first year we were there.

The other thing that I remember very clearly is that we had to dig walkways through the snow to get between the different vans and pieces of equipment. Fairly quickly the snow on the sides of the walkways got up to about shoulder high, and because we had no fences up around the site, the wild boars would get down in to the walkways. Since they could not see over the snow to get out, they would run back and forth in the walkways. Several times we would step out of one of the vans and in to the walkway only to come face to face with a very angry wild boar that seemed to blame us personally for the problems he was having. Luckily no one was ever hurt, but several times we spent more time on top of a running generator than we would have liked. Eventually the wild boar would bust out through the snow bank and go on their way, which would allow us to get back to work.

Initially the families all stayed in their current housing in Fulda and we commuted back and forth to work, but early the following spring we started moving everyone into housing at Wildflecken. By about June of 1977, we had completed the unit's move to Wildflecken.

Thank you for your efforts to keep the memories of units like the 1/1 ADA alive. I will continue to watch your Web site.
Charles W. Talley, CW4 Ret.

 
(Source: Email from Art Geahr, A Btry, 1st Bn, 1st ADA, 1984-87)
These photos are from the Alpha Battery 1/1 ADA (later redesignated A 3/52) Tactical Site located a few miles from Daley Barracks in Bad Kissingen. Alpha Battery was a HAWK Air Defense unit. The photos are from 1984-1987. The radar units are on elevated towers to see over the tree line.

The aerial photo (Photo #9) was very cool to see. It's kind of ironic that the site ended up being an off-road convention, because we used to tear around that place with jeeps and trucks.

1. (KB)

2. (KB)

3. (KB)


4. (KB)

5. (KB)

6. (KB)
 

7. (KB)

8. (KB)

 

9. The former tac site serves as the site for an annual "off-road" convention (KB)

Click here for more details
The Reiterswisen Tac Site aerial on the left is provided courtesy of the company Pro-Log GmbH of Bad Kissingen. Pro-Log owns the property and also hosts the annual "Allrad" convention at the former LTA.

This photo is protected by copyright.
   

 
2nd Bn, 2nd ADA (prev. 6th MSL Bn, 517th Arty)
 

Wayne Mineard in front of the AFP-1 ICWAR at "A" Btry tac site, 1970s
 
1970
A/6/517th Self Propelled Hawk Missile Battery, Giessen Army Depot, Germany, 1970
  Tactical Site: Annerod (Giessen)
Photos of the Annerod site:
former tactical site #1 (1)

(1) this is the tactical site for "A" Battery, 2nd Bn, 2nd ADA
- later it was converted to a Patriot site. It is probable that this also served as the tactical site for A/6/517.
 
  Mobile Deployment Area: ?  

B/6/517th Self Propelled Hawk Missile Battery, Bad Hersfeld, Germany, 1970
  Tactical Site: Semmelberg
Photos of the Wildflecken site:
former tactical site #1
 
  Mobile Deployment Area: ?  

C/6/517th Self Propelled Hawk Missile Battery, Rothwesten, Germany, 1970
  Tactical Site: Rothwesten
Photos of the Rothwesten site:
former tactical site #1
 
  Mobile Deployment Area: ?  

1976

Front gate of "A" Battery tactical site, 1977
 
(Source: Email from Larry Hicks, "A" Battery, June 1976 - Oct 1978)
I was with A Btry 2/2 ADA in Giessen , (West) Germany, arriving in June of 1976 and left in October of 1978 at the ripe old age of 21.

I always had my camera with me on the site and it was a Canon F-1 SLR 35mm.  Most photos were taken through a 35 to 105 Soligor zoom lens.  

I remember it like it was yesterday. "A" Btry was a NATO HAWK Site and had a prime tactical location that allowed the RADARs to work very well.  The HAWK site existed only a few more years after I left in 1978.  The photos I took were when it was in it's "hey day".  

In 1982 "A" Btry, 2nd Bn, 2nd ADA existed no more.  The same site location became the first Patriot Missile Site in Europe.  It then became "A" Btry, 4th Bn, 3rd ADA and was then renamed "A" Btry, 4th Bn, 43rd ADA a short time later.  It eventually moved back to Fort Bliss and the site was abandoned.

I can not find any operational Patriot pictures of this site after HAWK.  I am sure a few exist. I posted pictures of the Tac Site in ruins after Patriot though.

(Webmaster note: check the Related Links section of this page to find a link to Larry's Shutterfly Photo page. Well worth the visit!)

1. Ready bay (KB)

2. Radar hill (KB)

3. The "Boardwalk" (KB)


4. Looking towards B section (KB)

5. M&S Building? (KB)

6. Generator building (KB)


7. A section (KB)

8. Daily maintenance check (KB)

9. A section (KB)
 

10. Cliff Thomas and ICWAR (KB)

11. AFP-1 system equipment (KB)

12. HIPIR (KB)
 

13. Storage area (KB)

14. Storage area (KB)

15. Missile canister (KB)
 

16. Canning area (KB)

17. MOGAS truck (KB)
   

 
1978
(Source: Email from Harold "Rusty" Williamson)
I served as a lieutenant and Captain in 2/2 ADA in Giessen from March 1978 through March 1981.  I was initially assigned as a platoon leader for C Battery, down in the mudhole in Giessen.  Boy, was that a culture shock!  I have always believed there is something special about European mud.  It just sticks to everything.  And cold!  To this day, I give thanks every night that I am not in an environment like that.  The 24-hour mission made it hard to travel around and experience Germany.
 
At that time, Col Joe Ryan was Commander of 10th Group. I remember we called him "Godfather". I recall he had a hangup with allowing us to put doors on jeeps, so we froze our asses off all winter. Godfather traveled by chopper, as I remember.  I also recall his arrival at our battery's field location after about a week in the field, and he jumped all over me for chewing tobacco, asking what's that "s..." in your mouth?  I replied, Colonel, it's just a little Red Man.  He was not impressed. I chalked it up to a propensity I noticed in HQ officers to stomp on pissants, while elephants run free.
 
I later became battalion adjutant, and assistant S-3 for 2/2.  I remember having to administer one of those "no notice" piss tests. What a hassle!  Plus, as a free bonus, I got to load up over 800 piss samples in my POV and drive them to the lab. At the end, I found a better job in the Giessen military community. Scheduling fasching and dealing with the schools beat the hell out of that Tac Eval stuff.
 
But it wasn't all bad, not at all.  I met some of the finest soldiers in the Army, and made several lifelong friends at 2/2.  I remember some very colorful (and capable) NCOs who were excellent leaders. I had a great Battery Commander, Mike Kennedy, and recall some very capable lieutenants.  Joe Sers and Dave Turner are friends to this day. I lost touch with Sam Powell, who was the best officer I ever met.  And those troops, God bless them!  I met all kinds of folks, and almost daily I call upon life experiences I gained in Germany. 
 
It sounds like a cliche, but it's true:  I wouldn't do it again for anything, but I wouldn't take anything for having done it. 

 
3rd Bn, 59th ADA (prev. 6th MSL Bn, 59th Arty)
 

Kirch Goens Tac Site, C Battery (occupied early 1963)
 
1963
(Source: STARS & STRIPES, March 4, 1963)
Since arriving in Europe (about 18 months ago), C Battery, 6th MSL Bn, 59th Arty has occupied a temporary tectical site located near Ockstadt, west of Friedberg. The atc site was 13 miles from the battery's billets in Butzbach. With no dining facility at the tac site, the manning crews at the site received their food in insulated containers transported from Butzbach.

Recently, construction of a new tactical site at Kirch Göns, right next to Ayers Kaserne, has been completed and the battery is in the process of moving its equipment to the new tactical site.

The new site includes modern communications facilities and floodlight systems to improve site security. The new ready building includes a day room, kitchen and wash facilities.

C/6/59th Self Propelled Hawk Missile Battery, Butzbach, Germany, 1963
  Tactical Site: Ockstadt (temporary site used until early 1963)
Photos of the Ockstadt site:
former tactical site #1 (A)


Kirch Goens
(completed in early 1963)
Photos of the Kirch Göns site:
former tactical site #1


 
  Mobile Deployment Area: ?  

 
1966
(Source: Email from Harry Jones, 1966-67)
I was assigned to Delta Battery, 6/59 ADA from Sept 1966 to Sept 1967. I had been commissioned in June 1966, so this was my first assignment. I started out as Firing Platoon Leader, then XO, the commanded the battery for my last three months. This was a period when all the experienced officers in Germany were being pulled out and sent to Vietnam. The battalion was extremely short of officers. My battery had the CO, who an experienced Captain, and a the mainenance Chief Warrant Officer, and that was it. The battalion was in similar straits.

A year later when I left, the battalion had one LTC commanding, one major and one captain at BN HQ, and everyone else (about 30 officers) was either a brand-new first lieutenant with just over a year in the Army or a second lieutenant. My battery had myself as CO with 15 months service, four second lieutenants, a junior WO, and a grizzled CWO. Fortunately, we also had a grizzled 1SGT.

The battery barracks were at Wiesbaden Air Force Base. My cooks worked at the Air Force Mess Hall, and that year won awards for being part of the staff when that mess hall was selected as best in the USAF. The battery tactical site was located on what I believe was the southeast corner of Finthen Army Airfield just outside Mainz.

The AAF (Finthen) supported a Brigade of the 8th ID which was an airborne brigade located in Mainz. Across the road from us was a Nike Hercules Bn HQ and Firing Battery. Next door to us was a Pershing Battery. In the nearby woods was ammo storage for the Pershings. On the other side of the AAF was another Hawk battery. It was not only not in our battalion, but was in the other HAWK group of the 32d AADCOM. Our tac site was unimproved, ie: we had to supply our own electricity, potable water, etc.

1968
(Source: Email from Steve A. Hartje, HQ 6th Bn, 59th Arty)
I was assigned to HQ 6th/59th Arty from Jan 1968 to Nov 1968, and to HQ 10th Arty Gp from Nov 1968 to Jul 1969.

The 6/59 was located at Fliegerhorst Kaserne, outside of Hanau. The kaserne incorporated Fliegerhorst Airfield. Alpha & Charlie Bttys were at either end of the airfield. DSP was also located there. Bravo Btty was in Babenhausen, but I was never there. Delta Btty was located on a ridge top, overlooking the Main River at Wiesbaden -- their barracks were at the air base.

10th Gp HQ was at Ernst Ludwig Kaserne in Darmstadt. Our buildings were across the quad from the 212th Field Artillery. Hope this fills-in some gaps.
Steve Hartje

 
(Source: Email from Barbara Showell, 3rd Bn, 59th ADA)
I am doing my Internet search for fragments of my past again and browsed onto your USAREUR page that said you were collecting stuff.....
 
I was an Air Force brat then Active Army with a deplorable lack of photos from my past.  The ones I do have are mostly from Fliegerhorst Kaserne, Hanau. (Barbara was with the battalion during its move from Fliegerhorst to Neubücke near Baumholder sometime in 1982. Some of here photos are from that period.)

See also Barbara's Webshots Photo page.

1. 3-59th ADA (KB)

2. 503rd Avn Bn late 1980s (KB)

3. RATT rig (KB)


4. Discussing the move (KB)

5. (KB)

 

6. HHB barracks at Neubrücke (KB)

7. The 3-59th arrives at Neubrücke (KB)

8. (KB)
 

9. (KB)


 

1970
(Source: Email from Tim Burke, C Btry, 6th Bn, 59th ADA)
I was wondering if anyone had a map or a way to get to the old hawk missile site that was run by C Co. 6/59th ADA. I was there in 1970 and we used to man an isolated missile site right outside of Friedberg. We would go to the site for 24 hrs, then off for 24 hrs. It was perhaps a 15 to 20 minute ride from the Ray Barracks' front gate. There was a very small town right at the base of the rather large hill on which the missile site sat.

Back in 1970 there were no permanent bldgs... only tents and Quonset huts. And the town of Ockstadt looks much bigger than I remember it. In as much as Ray barracks was repatriated back in '07, I would guess the site is no longer an American Military site? Here's a short story that I wrote about my experiences there.

I was 19 back in 1970 when Uncle Sam came a' callin’. Ah yes… the memories. Time has a funny way of erasing bad ones and leaving you only with the good. At least it seems that way to me because I can only remember the good parts of my 20-month stint. I managed to make it through with neither scars nor tattoos. If I try hard I can recall being really upset with my conscription, but then things settled down when I landed Germany as my tour of duty.

Germany… that was wonderful. The people, for the most part, were nice. The girls hot, (though that arm-pit hair thing was … different) the bier, great. All in all it was some of the best years of my life… or at least sixteen of the best months of my life. The one story I can regale you with is the time my unit, a Mobile Hawk Missile Battalion, went on maneuvers. “Maneuvers” was done once per year and it was the biggest thing the lifers had to look forward to. Merely talking about it had a Viagra-like effect on them. I think a Battalion is something like 6 Companies? Each company was a Mobile Hawk Missile Company and was set up in a different area of Germany such that, with notice, a company could be completely packed up and moved within 5 hours. Anyway, once a year all six companies would have to actually pack up and move - all the missiles, launchers, radar platforms, trucks, etc., everything they had - to a designated rendezvous site. So, on a cold February morning the much anticipated maneuver began…. but first, a little back ground.

These times - the 70’s - were, well… a bit different. More than half of the EM’s were drafted so they certainly did not like their circumstance. They wanted as little military influence in their lives as possible. Drugs were as common on a daily basis as breakfast. Even the young Officer contingent was more liberal than you’d imagine (I’m certain that a huge percentage of them smoked pot) and so they too seemed not to get along well with the older officers and older high ranking NCO’s, i.e., the E-8’s and E-9’s. Let’s just say if moral was the army's heartbeat, during those days it was flat-lining. Basically we were young kids in a place we didn’t want to be, being hassled by people we wanted nothing to do with. The CO and other officers were quite aware of this.

Back to our story… Our facility, or missile site, was an isolated site about 20 minutes outside of Friedberg, Germany. It was a barbed wired fenced-in compound of about three acres. EM’s would leave the main Army Post in Friedberg in a deuce and a half to ride up to the site, then pulled duty for 24 hours, then had 24 hours free time back in Friedberg; 24 on and 24 off. (As an aside, Friedberg is where Elvis did his Army stint.) At the site there were several man-made berms and upon each sat a three-missile launcher and a radar dish on a wagon. Also, there were several Quonset huts for various things like vehicle repair, radar repair, missile repair, sleeping and a mess hall.

So… the big maneuver was fast approaching and the CO of our company decided perhaps it would be best if some of the more incorrigible EM’s were left behind to guard the temporarily abandoned facility. I was deemed one of these, along with five others, and so, left behind. “Lucky,” the company dog who, truth be told, seldom left the site, was also deemed a misfit and was to stay behind. As the big day dawned the canvas tents came down, the radar platforms got hitched to trucks, as did the missile launchers. The weapons and munitions arsenal were loaded and the trucks rumbled as the company “moved out.” All seemed to go without a hitch. Ahhh, but wait! Unbeknownst to the Officers, almost every EM in that convoy had with him a bottle of whiskey and a secret stash of hashish.

Now, on that morning during the hustle-bustle of packing up, we, the incorrigibles, were gathered up and given our instructions. After everyone and every vehicle had gone, we were to secure the area, post a guard at the main gate 24 hrs. a day and, after nightfall, continuously maintain two roving perimeter guards. We would survive solely on C-rations for the three days of the maneuver (I’m told that MRE’s are veritable four-star dining compared to C-rations; but then, the WWII guys said C-rations were four-star dining compared to their K-rations) and were to check in by radio each night by 20:00 hrs. We were not to leave the compound and no one was allowed in the compound without proper authority.

The trucks lumbered down the side of this mini-mountain that was our missile site, a long, slow, full-bellied anaconda that wound its way past the scattered homes on the mountainside, down through the town at its base. This was a really old, medieval looking town that had the traditional narrow cobble streets; some so narrow it was difficult maneuvering a deuce-and-a-half with a missile launcher attached to its rear.

As the day progressed the convoy moved slowly toward the rendezvous site, picking up speed once reaching the autobahn. About five hours of driving got them within 5 miles of the meeting site. But during that five hour drive fifths of Jack Daniels were drunk and “bowls” of hashish were smoked. The drivers of the various trucks were in sad shape and surely disaster rode up there with them in the cabs of those trucks. As the convoy exited the autobahn to make the final five mile leg of the journey, the character of the road changed; it narrowed to barely one lane each way and its physical condition deteriorated considerably. As the convoy approached a rather sharp bend in the road something happened to cause the lead trucks to hit the brakes, hard.

Meanwhile back at the now deserted missile site the sun was starting to sink, the temperature was dropping and snow flurries began dancing about with the winds. The lot of us huddled in the main/sleeping quonset hut, the only structure that had heat. The heat was an old kerosene heater that had a 5-gallon kerosene can hung on it with a manual pump. After dozens of hands of hearts, spades etc., it was unanimously decided that we would have none of this c-ration stuff and that we should seize the one jeep that was left behind and drive it down and secure some provisions, both solid and liquid, from the town at the base of the mountain. The jeep was an old, topless, ornery thing with a starter that was shot. To get it running you had to get it moving, then pop the clutch, which, with the starter button set to “on,” would enable the engine to turn over. We kept the jeep parked at the top of one of the missile launch berms so that when needed, all one need do is start it rolling down, then pop the clutch before you reached bottom. So, I donned my flight goggles and, along with the five others, roared out the front gate and down to that oasis of a town. No, there was no one left to guard the site, but did we care? Our company wouldn’t return for three days and we were in the middle of nowhere and we planned on being back before it became completely dark… because… well… that old jeep had no working headlights.

In the town’s only Gasthaus – where we were known and loved - (or at least our spendable dollars were known and much loved) we ordered “halben-liter flashe biers” (half liter bottles of beer) and bought beer for the six or so Germans who were there. This was a farm town and, this being February, there was little else for the local farmers to do. We drank many biers, talked as much as we could, (we not speaking much German, they not speaking much English) and purchased three cases of bier, some bread, cured meats & cheeses and some hard liquor to take back with us. They hadn’t American brands of hard liquor, though I guess we got whiskey and vodka. When we left the Gasthaus it was dark. I immediately confronted Pvt. "S" and demanded to know why he hadn’t alerted us as to the hour - as was his expressed duty - and told him that, due to the advanced darkness, our mission was now in peril. Private "S" was intoxicated and mostly incoherent in his response. It would be “touch and go” on our return to the site but with myself back in the cockpit I was sure we’d make it. The usual fifteen minute trip took every bit of an hour. We arrived back at our hut only to find the kerosene heater cold and completely out of kerosene. There was nothing left but to begin drinking the hard liquor… if only as a means of saving ourselves from freezing to death! After more drinks we began toasting our absent comrades and cursing Pvt. "S" for our situation. Though in a stupor, ‘ol "S" redeemed himself by recalling that Supply Sgt. Ortiz kept full five-gallon kerosene cans in a bunker at the rear of the compound. "S" himself was in no condition to aid in the fetching of the cans, but merely remembering them was sufficient to have us toast him again and again and….

… The convoy had to make a rather sharp right turn when the lead truck turned a bit too sharply, running off the edge of the road and down the embankment, falling over onto its side in the gully at the bottom. On the truck’s bed there had been three hawk missiles and three more attached to the mobile launcher it was towing. The convoy came to a shuddering halt. There were voices hollering and people running both to and away from the overturned truck. The CO was shrieking to his first lieutenant, “tell me these goddamned things aren’t armed!” The canvas top of the truck had an ugly ten inch gash through which popped Sp3 "C"’s crookedly smiling head; “hey… what the f...? What the f... happened, man?” His head then disappeared back into the cab of the truck. Curses and thumps and kicks were heard as Sp3 "C" and the second guy in the cab, Sp3 "D", cursed and kicked each other over who was at fault for this calamity. Slowly the tear in the canvas grew as "D"'s head, then torso, emerged from the cab, followed by "C"’s. After much struggle the two freed themselves entirely. It was as if this mangled truck had violently given birth to twins. The two, being free of the cab, took in the gravity of the scene. Three of the six missiles they were carrying had broken in half; the other three were strewn about the scene, one partly on and partly off the roadway. Meanwhile the CO was still excitedly demanding to know, of anyone he could accost, whether the missiles were armed and dangerous. “The German authorities must be notified,” he said, “Secure the area. Start moving everyone back. Let no one down this road except our explosives people and the German Police.” Several NCO’s approached "C" and "D" and several more searched the cab. After determining the two were relatively unharmed, the questioning began. Who was driving? Why did you turn so sharply? Was that alcohol they smelled on their breath? Those searching the cab found an empty whiskey bottle but no other, potentially more damning, contraband. They were unaware that EM’s always kept their stash on their person. The two-note wail of the German Politzie siren could be heard in the distance getting ever closer. The Officers were telling everyone to stay back. The convoy had halted and troops were told to cordon off the area from German civilians.

It was my understanding that each missile cost $500,000.00. Hmmm…. three missiles destroyed at a total cost of 1.5 million dollars. The truck sustained damage, as did the mobile launcher. I was guessing that this was a two million dollar day for old Charlie Co. 6/59th Hawk Missile Battalion. It was then that I began to wonder… if this is the waste of only one small company, imagine how much money the Army wastes throughout Europe… throughout the world!

... Back at the missile site…. total darkness gripped us. It was cold, snowing quite heavily and now that we had the heater re-fired up it was unanimously decided that, in as much as the six of us had pummeled those three cases of bier, another run to town was in order. To the jeep boys! We loaded into the jeep, gave her a heave down the berm and….. skidded off the side of the berm and rolled the jeep onto its side. There were five of us in the jeep and surely, only by the grace of Bacchus was no one was hurt. In our drunken state we thought it amazing what we had done… had done and lived to tell the tale! Well, there was nothing left to do but walk down the mountain to town. Pvt. "S" was in no condition, which was why he was not in the jeep in the first place, so we carried him into the guard shack at the front gate, sat him down and left him with a bottle of whiskey. Should he awake he'd surely need something to ward off exposure! We walked down to town, the trip seeming to pass quickly. The Gasthaus was open, warm, inviting… and there were even some young frauleins in the place! We made merry through the hours, buying beers, playing music and just being all-around excellent ambassadors for the good ol’ US of A. At closing time it hit us that we now had to walk back up to the site. This was not good. The trip down took 30 minutes. In darkness it seems, you can walk faster than drive. The return trip seemed to take double that. True, like mules we carried more “provisions” on the return trip, but the cold, the steep incline, the biers we’d had… all these made travel slow and difficult.

Upon reaching the front gate we congratulated ourselves for having the foresight not to lock it because Pvt. "S" was in no shape to unlock it for us. We found him asleep in the chair in the guard shack where we’d left him and no amount of shaking could rouse him. Since he was there in the guard shack already, we decided he would pull first guard duty there at the main gate and we’d take the key with us. A man who couldn’t move would have little use for the key anyway. We retired to the quonset hut where we immediately felt warm and…thirsty! I guess some of us were not warm enough because someone really got that kerosene heater stoking! Well, copious amounts of alcohol and an extremely warm room produces…. slumber. We all fell dead asleep. I cannot recall precisely when the last soldier fell unconscious in that room but I can recall precisely when we arose. Sometime that next morning, at some ungodly hour - like 9 AM - I awoke to a very corpulent E-9 with tattered clothes, whose profusely bleeding face was screaming into mine, “Just what in THE f... is goin’ on here, troop! Who is your Commanding Officer… where is your Commanding Officer?”

Well, he certainly had the better of me. At that point I don’t think I was capable of giving my own name. My head was pounding like the hammer of a forge and my mouth felt as if, during the night, someone had stuffed their socks in it.

It seems a visiting General was out at the front gate, a front gate the General could not enter because the guard on duty refused to open it; refused even to acknowledge he was there waiting to enter. The General’s First Sergeant, a walrus in both size and looks, had to squeeze under the barbed wire, ripping his fatigues and face considerably, go into the guard shack, try in vain to rouse a guard who was dead to the world, look for the key he could not find, then march here to our hut to find out just who the hell was responsible for this dereliction. It seems Pvt. "S" had awoken during the night, put a major dent in the bottle of whiskey, then promptly fell back into an alcohol induced stupor. He would not have awoken even for Marilyn Monroe, had she appeared at the front gate wearing only a negligee. As I staggered out of the hut I looked about: the jeep lay on its side, beer bottles and liquor bottles were strewn about, the company dog lay frozen solid outside the hut door and Pvt. "S" sat in the chair in the guard shack where we’d left him, unconscious, with a snow drift covering most of his body, the whiskey bottle cradled in the crook of his left arm!

Well… luckily for us so much trouble ensued for the CO over the missile fiasco that the report to him by the General’s First Sergeant about what he had encountered got put on the back burner. I don’t recall how "C" and "D", the two in the overturned truck, faired. I’m sure no worse than an “Article 15” and a small fine. Those two had less than sixty days till they were discharged - were what we called “short” - and it mattered very little to them. Of my conscription I had almost a year remaining so, being a man of foresight, I put in for a transfer. Our CO, a very enlightened man himself, saw the merit of this request… I guess great minds think alike! I left Charlie Company 6/59th and never looked back…. till now.

You never know in life…


 
1973
(Source: STARS & STRIPES, November 30, 1973)
The 9th Engineer Battalion recently completed the construction of a new HAWK missile site at Ockstadt. Ground-breaking occurred in August 1972.

The engineers cleared the site of debris and constructed four buildings: a water booster station; a missile service building; a communications center and a generator facility. They also paved site roads and did landscaping to reduce soil erosion due to heavy rains.

The site will soon be occupied by a battery of 3rd Bn, 59th ADA.

(Webmaster note: where was "C" Battery's tac site before the new one was completed?)

 
1984
(Source: Email from Pete Schardien, 3rd Bn, 59th ADA, 1984-87)
I was stationed first on Tac-site B-Btry, 3/59 ADA  in Baumholder, West Germany from Sept 1984 until Aug 1985. Over at B-Btry, I began as a 24E, Improved Hawk Fire Control Mechanic and performed this job until being reassigned. I spent a long 42 weeks in training at Fort Bliss only to come over to Germany and be phased out. 

I played flag football with some of the guys in the unit. I remember old Sgt. Bettencourt, from Tulare, Ca. He was a great friend. I was just a kid in my early 20s while stationed there and Joe B and his wife Patty kept me out of trouble. I basically became one of the family for the short time there. On weekends, we all hung out at the Baumholder Rod & Gun Club. Occasionally, we shot trap and skeet during the day and listened to live bands at night.

Once we were phased out, I went to HHB 3/59 ADA, Aug. 1985 until May 1987 and moved into the newly formed the Battalion Readiness Center. I stayed on post in Neubrucke. Neubrucke was an old hospital, where from time to time, reserve units pulled their 2-week yearly duty. Most, if not all of the time I was there 3/59 ADA was under the command of LTC Thomas M. Reise.

The BRC was an idea of LTC Reise and was responsible for tracking the status of his battalion's end items (radar sets, vehicles, generators, radio equipment, etc). In the BRC, we evolved into a core staff of 4. Since we were a 24/7 operation located within the headquarters building, we took on the role of Battalion Staff Duty NCOs. This was choice duty, for a young soldier such as myself because we pulled a rotational 24hrs on-48hrs off schedule. Since three out of the four of us were senior NCOs we bypassed morning formations, PT, and whatever else we didn't feel like attending.  This was a perfect job for me because I was a Spec 4 walking around thinking I was SFC. However, I was constantly in trouble with more senior individuals because I was like this and told the others to "take a hike" when ordered to do something I didn't want to do. I guess I've always been like that!

All in all, looking back, it was a lot of fun. I had some good friends, like Joe, Patty, Rick Hall, Chief Roberts. I remembered we were constantly training, and I couldn't understand why because it was the 20th Century. We didn't fight wars anymore!!!??? Well, who would have thought!! Thank goodness we did.

 
1982
(Source: The News, October 1982)
94th gains battalion Sept. 30

By Laura Bower

As of Sept. 30, 3d Battalion, 59th Air Defense Artillery is no longer a 10th Air Defense Artillery Brigade organization. Now belonging to the 94th ADA Bde, 3/59 ADA has a long and proud history.

The primary reason for the changeover was one of mission. 94th ADA Bde., a Nike-Here unit, is having its primary missile phased out by the incoming PATRIOT. 10th ADA, which will gain the first PATRIOT battalion, made room for the new missile and relinquished command of the 3/59 IHAWK battalion to the 94th Bde.

In a ceremony formalizing the switch, Col. William Winzurk, commander of the 94th ADA Bde, received the colors from the commander of the 10th Bde., Col. Robert Weinfurter. A band played and the soldiers of the 3/59th stood tall as the proud history of their battalion was read.

The unit was organized on Janaury 1, 1918, as the 59th Artillery Regiment consisting of Regular Army and New York National Guard units. With continuous service in New York during and following World War I, the regiment was redesignated as the 59th Coast Artillery (Harbor Defense) in 1924.

Sent to the Philippines prior to World War II, the unit surrendered to Japanese forces following the battle of Corregidor in 1942. The regiment was deactivated following the war in 1946.

Redesignated by the Department of the Army as the 59th Antiaircraft Artillery Automatic Weapons Battalion in 1947, the organization, with four firing batteries, was activated at Fort Bliss, Texas, on January 1, 1948. During service at Fort Bliss, the battalion was again redesignated in 1953 as the 59th Antiaircraft Battalion Automatic Weapons, Self-Propelled, utilizing twin 40mm guns as the prime weapon.

In 1958, the headquarters battery was transferred to Department of the Army control while the four firing batteries were redesignated into battalions of separate historical lineage.

In 1960, the 6th Missile Battalion, 59th Artillery was activated at Fort Bliss with a headquarters and four tactical batteries. The unit underwent training on the HAWK missile system and deployed to Germany the following year. In 1972, the battalion was redesignated as the 3d Battalion, 59th Air Defense Artillery. During Annual Service Practice in 1975, all batteries attained Honor Battery status by achieving a score of 95 percent or higher during evaluation at the NATO Missile Firing Installation at Crete.

The battalion recently underwent a strenuous relocation from Hanau to Neubrueke, but managed to uphold its tradition of service. Their new commander expressed his pride in assuming command of the unit, and voiced his certainty that the unit will continue its high performance.

 
Kasernes & Tactical Sites - 10th ADA Brigade units
 
(Webmaster Note: looking for anyone with more details on the HAWK administrative and tactical sites operated by the 10th.)
 

HAWK Units in the early 1960s
 
The map on the left shows the location of HAWK units and tactical sites in the early 1960s - it is a DRAFT - still working on some details of the map

Also, the site list presented below is also still a draft - don't have all of the information yet.

Inactivation/Redesignation Dates:
6th Msl Bn, 562nd Arty -
6th Bn, 517th Arty -
6th Bn, 62nd ADA -
6th Bn, 59th ADA -
 
6th MSL Bn, 562nd Arty -- 1st Bn, 1st ADA

SITE DESIGNATION

UNIT COMMENTS
Butzbach HHB, 6th MSL Bn, 562nd Arty Arrived from CONUS Dec 1962 (?)
Butzbach HHB, 1st Bn, 1st ADA 6-562nd Arty redesignated as 1-1st ADA on 1 Sep 1971; unit moved to Wildflecken in 1976
Camp Wildflecken, Wildflecken HHB, 1st Bn, 1st ADA
Fulda Battalion Operations Cen moved to Wildflecken, Aug 1976
Wildflecken Battalion Operations Cen
512th ORD DET (GMDS)
DSP
Wildflecken A Btry
Reiterswiesen (Bad Kissingen) A Btry billeted at Daley Bks, Bad Kissingen in early 1980s
Wildflecken MTA B Btry
Friedberg C Btry
Finkenberg (Fulda) C Btry billeted at Downs Bks, Fulda; early 1980s
Fulda D Btry

 
6th MSL Bn, 517th Arty -- 2nd Bn, 2nd ADA

SITE DESIGNATION

UNIT COMMENTS
HHB, xxth Msl Bn
Giessen HHB, 6th MSL Bn, 517th Arty
Army Depot, Giessen HHB, 2nd Bn, 2nd ADA 6-517th Arty redesignated as 2-2nd ADA on 1 Sep 1971;
Battalion Operations Cen
516th ORD DET (GMDS)
DSP
Giessen A Btry billeted at Giessen Army Depot
Semmelberg (Bad Hersfeld) B Btry billeted at McPheeters Bks, Bad Hersfeld
Butzbach C Btry
Rothwesten C Btry maybe early 1980s
Army Depot (Giessen) C Btry billeted at Giessen Army Depot
Kassel D Btry

 
6th MSL Bn, 59th Arty -- 3rd Bn, 59th ADA

SITE DESIGNATION

UNIT COMMENTS
HHB, xxth Msl Bn
Hanau HHB, 6th MSL Bn, 59th Arty
Hanau HHB, 3rd Bn, 59th ADA 6-59th Arty redesignated as 3-59th ADA (probably) on 1 Sep 1971
Battalion Operations Cen
223rd ORD DET (GMDS)
DSP
Hanau A Btry
Wildflecken B Btry
Babenhausen B Btry
Friedberg B Btry maybe early 1980s
Butzbach C Btry
Hanau C Btry
Fulda D Btry
Finthen D Btry

Related Links:
  "A" Battery, 2nd Bn, 2nd ADA - Larry Hicks' wonderful photo page on Shutterfly. Photos are of the Giessen tactical site of "A" Battery in the mid 1970s.  
  Army Days - Wayne Harris' personal pictures of B Battery, 1st Bn, 1st ADA, Wildflecken, early 1970s