If you do NOT see the Table of Contents frame to the left of this page, then
Click here to open 'USArmyGermany' frameset

504th Aviation Battalion
4th Armored Division

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.


504th Avn Co (19..-19..)

504th AB(C)
(19..-19..)

A Co (Cbt Spt)

B Co (Attack)

Related Links
504th Avn Bn Timeline (Project)

 
504th Aviation Company
 

504th Avn Co: unit members in 1962 (Robert Mitchell)
 
504th Aviation Company Pocket Patch
 
(Source: STATION LIST, 30 June 1962)
504th Aviation Company, Fürth, APO 696

Early 1960s
(Source: Email from Frank Kirchgessner, 504th Avn Co)
I arrived for duty with the 504th Avn. Co. in July of 1960. The Hdg. for the company was located at Furth, located just outside Nuernberg. I transferred to Detachment "H" of the 504th Avn. Co. in Oct. 60 and stayed there until I was reassigned back to the States in June of 64.

I reenlisted in 1962. Actually I was the 1000 solder to reeinlist in the Division and was sworn in by the then Major (Gen) James H. Polk, Commanding General 4th. Armored Div. The 504th provided Aviation support to meet the needs of the division. In order to meet these needs the 504th was stationed at various airfields within the division using the appropriate aircraft in the inventory to support specific needs.

Our Det was the largest as we directly supported Division Hdgs. located at Cooke Barracks. The airfield at Cooke Barracks was part of a German recon. squadron during WWII. Our barracks were used by the German pilots who flew the missions.

Our Det. processed the first UH-1A {Huey} helicopters sent to Germany in late 1961. I was assigned one as a crew chief in Dec. 1961 and I remained in that assignment until 1964.

1961
(Source: Email from Barry J. Veden, 504th Avn Co, Nov 1962-May 1964)
I served with the 504th Avn Co. (later BN) from Nov. 22, 1961 until May 8, 1964. I was stationed in Fuerth and our barracks were above the airplane hangar at the airstrip.

I was assigned to the Surveillance Platoon during the entire time I was in Fuerth, and was a radar operator on an AN/MPQ-29 ground radar set. Our mission was to fly radio-controlled drone aircraft outfitted with a camera over enemy territory, photograph any enemy movement of troops, return the drone to our remote location and retrieve the film from inside the camera. I suspect that the unmanned drone aircraft flying over enemy-held territory in war zones today are descendents of the crude models we flew 40 years ago.

While I was at Monteith Barracks, our company received the first Mohawk aircraft that had SLR (side-looking aerial remote cameras), and witnessed them flying missions just about everyday. At the time, they were top-secret and were kept locked in the hangars at night, but we guarded the hangars while carrying weapons that weren't loaded, and in some instances, armed only with nightsticks. I guess the military wasn't too worried about foreign spies.

I was just a kid when I was in Germany, and organizational structure didn't mean very much to me. I was more interested in locating the bars and Frauleins in Fuerth and Nuremberg and having a good time. I do remember that as a Company, we had a Captain as a Commanding Officer and a First Sergeant as the top NCO, but after we became a Battalion, a Major was in charge and a Sergeant Major became the top kick.

Because we were an Aviation Company, we probably had as many officers (pilots) as we did enlisted men, and they were aloof, even to other officers who weren't pilots.

My recollection of us as a Company is that we had a HQ platoon, which included clerical and mess hall support staff, a Surveillance platoon, which included the crew that flew the drones, a crew that was in charge of the photographic equipment (including a mobile photo lab which went to the field with us), radar operators and tech support people. We also had an Aircraft Maintenance platoon that maintained all the planes and helicopters that we flew, and a Vehicle Maintenance platoon (Motor Pool).

All the officers in the company fit into one of those categories, with the majority of them being pilots who marched to the beat of a different drummer. Because of the nature of our work, we spent a lot of time in the field, with Graf being the most frequented spot. Pilots didn't go with us to the field, flying all of their missions out of the Monteith Airstrip.

One interesting sidebar is that while out in the field in November 1963, I broke my right ankle on the day that President Kennedy was assassinated and ended up being one of the few soldiers on base the next day. Germans flocked to the post, not believing what had happened and wanting more information from us, which of course, we didn't have. Everyone was afraid that the Russians would use the situation in an attempt to force the Allies out of Europe, and as you can imagine, we were on a high state of alert for a long time after Kennedy's death.

(Source: STARS & STRIPES, July 14, 1967)
The 504th Avn Bn has been inactivated. Most of the battalion's aviation personnel have been reassigned to Hq Company, 4th Armd Div. There they will form a Division Aviation Section and a Command Aviation Section. Other personnel from the former battalion will form Detachment "C" under the 504th Support & Transportation Battalion and operate Army class A airfields in the division area.
If you have more information on the history or organization of the 504th Avn Co or 504th Avn Bn, please contact me.

 
504th Aviation Battalion (Cbt)
 
504th Aviation Battalion DI
(Source: Aviation, Army Lineage Series, 1986)
The 504th Avn Co was reorganized and redesignated on 10 Sept 1963 as Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 504th Aviation Batallion.

The Battalion's organic elements (A and B Companies) were constituted on 19 June 1963 and activated 10 September 1963.

Company A was inactivated on 15 January 1967 in Germany.

The 504th Avn Bn (less Company A) was inactivated on 5 June 1967 in Germany.

 

H-34 of 504th Avn Bn at Heilbronn in the winter of 1965/66 (Carl Broberg)
 
1964
(Source: Email from Robert Quillen, A Co, 504th Avn Bn, 1964-66)
I served in A Co, 504th Avn Bn from Feb 1964 until Sep. 1966.

A Company 504th Aviation Battalion, 4th Armored Division stationed at Ansbach Army Airfield from late 1963 until early 1967 had the white nose band and a white band around the forward section of the tail boom.

It is the same band as the
18th Trans Co that had been stationed in Schleissheim but was moved to Ansbach.

I wil
l be more than glad to send couples of phots made with the white bands, the 4th AD crest on the transmission doors and the 504th Avn Crest painted on the pylon.

Photo #3
shows the bands plus the 4th AD crest on the transmission access door, the 1st Platoon yellow lighting bolt and the 504th Avn Bn crest on the pylon. That photo was made in 1966 at Ansbach Army Airfield behind Hangar 5807.

The photo with the two CH-34C's was made in 1964, behind Hangar 5801 at AAF; 71700 is in the acft in front with the "8" on the cowling behind the transmission doors. The "8" was from it's old unit, the 8th Trans Bn, 18th Trans Co. On the transmission access doors is the 4th AD Patch (crest), which was being painted on due this period.

The last photo shows the nose doors on 023.


CW 4 Robert Quillen, US Army Retired (Served in A Co 504th Avn Bn from Feb 1964 until Sep. 196
6.

504th Avn Bn
Katterbach




1. CH-34C

2. Two CH-34's at Ansbach AAF

3. Unit markings


 
1964
(Source: STARS & STRIPES, Sept 9 1964)
504th Avn Bn to Hold Anniversary Festival

Almost everybody will be up in the air here Thursday as the 4th Armd Div's 504th Aviation Bn celebrates its first anniversary as a battalion-sized unit.

Maj Gen Alexander D. Surles Jr., 4th Armd Div CG, is scheduled to fly from his headquarters in Goeppingen to review the battalion.

But the general will not be able to give the normal "pass the troops in review" order.

He'll have to use a radio.

That's because the review will be a flyby of 22 aircraft. Seven types of planes ranging from the OH13 "bubble" helicopter to the twin-engine, jet-turbine Mohawk surveillance aircraft will represent Alfa and Bravo Companies and the headquarters detachment of the battalion.

And Surles, accompanied by Lt Col Stephten G. Martin, 504th CO, will review the flyby from a hovering helicopter.

Single Mohawks from the 3rd, 8th and 24th Inf Divisions and the 3d Armd Div will fly a diamond formation salute to the battalion while the 4th Armd Band performs on the ground.

Men of the battalion will also be deployed for the general in an air mobility demonstration. Eight helicopters of the division's Delta Troop, 4th Cavalry, will fly escort missions during the simulated infantry reinforcement of a ground operation.

But not all the day's activities will be up in the air. Members of the battalion and their families have scheduled a picnic complete with games and a Bavarian band in one of the unit's hangars at Monteith Barracks.

 
(Source: STATION LIST, 30 Sept 1964)

UNIT DESIGNATION

DUTY STATION COMMENTS
HHC, 504th Avn Bn (Cbt) Monteith Bks, Fürth TOE 01-076E
A Company Monteith Bks, Fürth TOE 01-077E, would later (1st half of 1964?) move to Hindenburg Ksn, Ansbach
B Company Monteith Bks, Fürth TOE 01-078E


Company B hangar, Fürth Army Airfield, c. 1964 (Robert Mitchell)

A crew chief checks the rotor mast (routine maint.) on a UH-1B chopper (Robert Mitchell)
(Source: Email from Robert Mitchell)

Robert Mitchell
  I was stationed at Furth, Germany (Moneith Barracks) assigned to the 504th Avn. Bn. from January 1962 until June 1965. I was an aircraft mechanic and crew chief during my tour.

I met and married my wife of 48 years while I was stationed there. As I look back now, these were the best of times.

I've lost contact with all of the guys (some died) I served with but I still think about them often. Thanks to the internet and web-sites such as yours it is possible to perhaps contact some of these old vets now.

 
VARIOUS POCKET PATCHES

Avn Co, 4th Armd Div
Pocket Patch

504th Avn Bn
Pocket Patch



 
Related Links: