|A squad of troops at Downs Barracks responds to a 'border incident' during a helicopter reinforcement exercise.
Seventh Army headquarters directed, on 11 March 1959, that the Seventh Army Aviation Group furnish two H-34 Choctaw helicopters and crews to each armored cavalry regiment and that the regiments reinstate the helicopter reinforcement program on a full-scale basis, effective 1 April 1959. A third helicopter was later furnished to the 14th Armored Cavalry Regiment because of its greater area of responsibility. The stationing of the crews and helicopters were jointly determined by the Group and ACR commanders, with the Group being responsible for maintaining the helicopters and insuring that no less than two flyable helicopters were available to the regiment. Prior to attachment the crews were fully checked out on border flight operations and briefed on the seriousness of border over-flights. The program was to be consistent with the test program's training schedule; however, only one helicopter was to be employed at a time, with the other held in reserve for a real incident. The 532d MI Battalion was tasked with notifying the appropriate German agencies of the new procedures. (Source: US ARMY BORDER OPERATIONS IN GERMANY, 1945-1983, WILLIAM E. STACY).