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197th Ordnance Battalion
59th Ordnance Brigade

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.


9th Ord Co

41st Ord Co

64th Ord Co

525th Ord Co

563rd Ord Co

164th MP Co

165th MP Co

197th Ordnance Battalion
197th Ordnance Bn DUI
(Source: A Look Back ... at the 59th Ordnance Brigade. Final issue of the 59th COURIER, the command newspaper, published in 1992.)
The 197th Ordnance Battalion was constituted in the regular Army as Headquarters and Headquarters Detachment, 1st Battalion, 58th Quartermaster Regiment in May 1936. The unit was activated in February 1941 at Fort Lewis, Wa.

After a few reorganizations, the battalion was deployed to Europe during World War II and saw action in Italy, France and Germany. The battalion received credit for participation in six campaigns and received a Meritorious Unit Commendation for its service in Italy. Following World War II, the 197th was inactivated in November 1945.

In January 1967, the battalion was reactivated at Tooele Army Depot, Utah. During the consolidation of the Headquarters Special Depots in 1972, the Headquarters and Headquarters Company and the 197th Ordnance Battalion were activated at the 59th Ordnance Group Special Depot in Fischbach.

In 1977, the headquarters company along with the battalion headquarters was moved from Fischbach to Muenchweiler. With the inactivation of the 3rd Ordnance Battalion in 1991, the headquarters moved to Husterhoeh Kaserne in Pirmasens.

Prior to inactivation of the 59th Ordnance Brigade, the battalion's subordinate units included the 9th, 41st, 64th, and 563rd
Ordnance Companies, the 164th and 165th Military Police Companies, the 41st Ordnance Detachment, the Headquarters and Headquarters Company, and the 619th Theater Air Support Company.

The 197th Ordnance Battalion, along with the Headquarters and Headquarters Company, the 41st Ordnance Company, and the 563rd Ordnance Company are the only 59th Ordnance Brigade assets which are not being inactivated. They will now fall under operational control of the 21st TAACOM.

9th Ordnance Company

The 9th Ordnance Company was organized in February 1921 at Fort Sill, Okla. using personnel from the 9th Light Mobile Ordnance Repair Shop. In October 1939, it was redesignated as the 9th Ordnance (Medium Maintenance). The unit was redesignated as the 9th Ordnance Medium Maintenance Company in 1942, and in November of that year, arrived in North Africa.

During World War II, the 9th served in Sicily, Italy and Central Europe and received credit for participation in six campaigns. For its actions, the unit was awarded the Meritorious Unit Commendation.

Following the cessation of hostilities, the 9th Ordnance returned to Camp Kilmer, N.J. where it was inactivated in March 1946. In April 1949, the company was redesignated as the 9th Ordnance Medium Automotive Maintenance Company and activated in Okinawa in June of that year.

Redesignated as the 9th Ordnance Company (Direct Automotive Support) in November 1952, the unit was inactivated in March 1953. The 9th Ordnance was again activated in November 1953 at Fort Bragg, N.C., but was inactivated there in March of the following year.

The company was again active from January 1955 through March 1958 at Fort Knox, Kentucky. The unit was activated as the 9th Ordnance Company (Special Weapons and Missile) (Depot Support) in December 1958 at White Sands, N.M. In June 1959, the company arrived in West Germany and was assigned to the 82nd Ordnance Battalion, Advanced Weapons Support Command, with duty at Miesau Army Depot.

In May 1961, the 9th Ordnance Company was transferred to the 72nd Ordnance Battalion, and then in September 1965, the company was assigned directly under AWSCOM when the 72nd Ordnance Battalion was inactivated.

In January 1971, the 9th Ordnance Company, along with the 4th Ordnance Company and the 164th Military Police Company, was made part of the Miesau Special Depot under AWSCOM.

In June 1972, the unit received the Best Mess Award from the Theater Army Support Command.

In November 1972, the Miesau Special Depot was disbanded when the 72nd Ordnance Battalion was activated, the 9th was assigned to the 72d. Finally, in June 1983, the 9th Ordnance Company was reassigned to the newly organized Theater Support Battalion (Provisional) which in June 1985 was redesignated as the 3rd Ordnance Battalion.

During the historic chemical retrograde, the 9th Ordnance Company was responsible for the vehicular to rail transload phase of the operation.

On July 26, 1990, the 9th Ordnance Company received the first 20 vehicles to download at the Reserve Support Activity, Miesau. All 100,000 chemical rounds where staged and accounted for 28 days later.

The company was also responsible for the upload of the munitions onto
the trains which would transport them to the port at Nordenham.

On July 17, 1991, the Meritorious Unit Award was presented to the 9th Ordnance Company for distinguishing itself during the Chemical Retrograde.

In February 1991, the 3rd Ordnance Battalion was inactivated and the 9th Ordnance Company, still located in Miesau, was assigned to the 197th Ordnance Battalion.

The 9th Ordnance Company will again inactivate in August 1992.

41st Ordnance Company
The 41st Ordnance Company was constituted in the regular Army in May 1936 as Company C, 1st Battalion, 32nd Quartermaster Regiment. In June 1940, the unit was redesignated as Company C, 70th Quartermaster Battalion and moved to Camp Gordon, Ga. in May 1942. In August 1942, the company was converted and redesignated as the 3419th Ordnance Medium Maintenance Company.

In January 1943, the company was reorganized as the 3419th Ordnance Medium Automotive Maintenance Company. The unit deployed to Europe and received credit for participation in four campaigns during War World II. Reorganized and redesignated as the 41st Ordnance Medium Automotive Maintenance Company in June 1947, the unit was inactivated in Germany in September of that year.

The company was activated in Japan in March 1950 and deployed to Korea where it received credit for participation in one campaign. In November 1951, the unit was inactivated in Japan.

Activated at Fort Bragg, N.C. in May 1952, the company was reorganized and redesignated as the 41st Ordnance Company in November of that same year. The 41st was inactivated in Thailand in September 1966.

In September 1975, the 41st Ordnance Company was again activated, this time at Weilerbach, West Germany, and was assigned to the 72nd Ordnance Battalion of the 59th Ordnance Group.

Two years later, in September 1977, the company was reassigned to the 3rd Ordnance Battalion. The 41st Ordnance was transferred to Special Troops Battalion (Provisional) when the 3rd Ordnance Battalion moved to the 32nd U.S. Army Air Defense Command. The company was then assigned to the Theater Support Battalion (Provisional) when it was organized and then to the 3rd Ordnance Battalion in June 1985 with its return to the 59th Ordnance Brigade.

The 41st Ordnance Company was reassigned to the 197th Ordnance Battalion in October 1990 when the 3rd Ordnance Battalion was inactivated.

64th Ordnance Company

The 64th Ordnance Company was constituted in the regular Army in October 1933. It was activated in February 1941 at Savanna Ordnance Depot, Ill. as the 64th Company (Ammunition). In October 1942, the company was redesignated as the 64th Ordnance Ammunition Company.

The 64th deployed to North Africa in November 1942 and went on to participate in six campaigns during World War II. In September 1946, the unit was redesignated as the 64th Ordnance Base Depot Company and activated in Adak, Ark. in April of that year. The company's existence was short, however, as it was inactivated two months later.

The 64th was redesignated in October 1958 as the 64th Ordnance Company (Special Weapons and Missile) (Direct Support). It was activated in December 1958 at Fort Sill, Okla. and tasked to provide support to the U.S. Army Artillery and Missile School.

The 64th Ordnance Company deployed to West Germany and arrived in Fischbach in
October 1959. The company was assigned to the 82nd Ordnance Battalion of the Advanced Weapons Support Command with the mission of commanding and operating the Fischbach Ordnance Depot.

In April 1962, the unit was reorganized as the 64th Ordnance Company (Special Ammunition) (Depot Support). As a result of plans to inactivate the 82nd Ordnance Battalion in September 1965, the 64th was assigned directly under AWSCOM in July. The AWSCOM Special Depot, Fischbach, was organized in December 1970, creating a headquarters to command the 64th as well as the other AWSCOM units at Fischbach.

With the merger of AWSCOM and the Special Ammunition Support Command in November 1972, the Headquarters, Special Depot, Fischbach, was disbanded and the 64th was assigned to the newly activated 197th Ordnance Battalion.

The 64th Ord. Co. inactivated in June 1992.

164th MP Company

The 164th Military Police Company was organized and activated as the 164th Military Police Prisoner of War Processing Company in January 1944 at Fort Custer, Mich. The 164th arrived in New Guinea in August 1944 and then on Leyte in the Philippines in October of the same year. For its actions in World War II, the company was awarded a Philippine Presidential Citation and received credit for participation in three campaigns. The unit was inactivated in January 1946 on Leyte.

The 164th was activated and assigned to the 8th U.S. Army in Korea in 1951. During the Korean War, the company participated in five campaigns and was awarded two Republic of Korea Presidential Unit Citations. It was inactivated in Korea in December 1953.

The unit was redesignated and activated as the 164th Military Police
Company in March 1962 in Kaiserslautern, West Germany. In the fall of 1962, the 164th was assigned for duty at Miesau Army Depot. In March 1967, the 44th and 100th Military Police Detachments were attached to the 164th.

From January 1971 through November 1972, the 164th was part of the Miesau Special Depot, a command subordinate to AWSCOM. In March 1971, and again in March 1972, the 164th received the AWSCOM Commander's Trophy for having the best sports program in the command.

In November 1972, the company was assigned to the newly activated 72nd Ordnance Battalion. In August 1975, the military police detachments were inactivated and the personnel transferred to the 164th.

In June 1983, the 164th was transferred to the new Theater Support Battalion (Provisional) which became the 3rd Ordnance Battalion in June 1985.

The 164th was assigned to the 197th Ordnance Battalion in October 1990 after the inactivation of the 3rd Ordnance Battalion.

The 164th MP Co. will be inactivated in August 1992.

165th MP Company
The 165th Military Police Company was constituted in October 1944 in the Army of the United States as the 165th Military Police Prisoner of War Processing Company and activated at Fort Sam Houston, Texas. The unit was reorganized and redesignated in March 1945 as the 165th Military Police Escort Guard Company, and was inactivated in October of that year at Vancouver Barracks, Wash.

In September 1951, it was allotted to the regular Army and the following month it was activated in Korea. The company was reorganized and redesignated as the 165th Military Police Company in February 1953. For its actions in Korea, the 165th was credited with participation in five campaigns and was awarded two Republic of Korea Presidential Unit Citations. The 165th was inactivated in Korea in April 1954.

In March 1962, the 165th was activated in West Germany and assigned to the 193rd Ordnance Battalion of the Advanced Weapons Support Command. In April 1964, it was reassigned to the 82nd Ordnance Battalion, and then directly under AWSCOM in July 1965 as a result of the plans to inactivate the battalion.

The 165th was assigned to the Special Depot, Fischbach, in December 1970, and then to the 197th Ordnance Battalion upon the battalion's activation in November 1972.

The 165th MP Co. was relocated to Pirmasens in January 1992, and is scheduled to be inactivated in September 1992.

563rd Ordnance Company

The 563rd Ordnance Company was activated as Company G, 57th Quartermaster Regiment at Camp Livingston, La. in June 1941. In August 1942, the company was reorganized and redesignated as Company G, 57th Ordnance Heavy Maintenance Regiment, and the following month, it was redesignated as the 900th Ordnance Heavy Maintenance Company. In October 1943, the unit was redesignated as the 900th Ordnance Heavy Automotive Maintenance Company.

During World War II, the company received credit for participation in five campaigns in Europe. The company was inactivated in England in 1946.

The unit was redesignated in February 1947 as the 563rd Ordnance, Heavy Automotive Maintenance Company, and in May 1947 as the 563rd Ordnance Medium Automotive Maintenance Company.

Activated in Germany in June 1947, the unit was reorganized and redesignated as the 563rd Ordnance Company in April 1953, only to be inactivated two years later in France.

The 563rd was activated in June 1964 at Fort Dix, N.J. and then inactivated there in 1967. Activated once again at Redstone Arsenal, Ala. in September 1969, the company arrived at Camp Perry in Wiesbaden, West Germany in March 1970 and was assigned to the Advanced Weapons Support Command.

In August 1970, the 563rd assumed operational control of the 255th Ordnance Detachment and its mission of Chapparal/Vulcan support. In September 1971, the 563rd assumed responsibility for Redeye support for the Berlin Brigade. The 255th Ordnance Detachment was inactivated in March 1973, but the support mission remained.

In September 1977, the 563rd was assigned to the 3rd Ordnance Battalion and then to Special Troops Battalion (Provisional) in November 1982, Theater Support Battalion (Provisional) in May 1983, and finally 3rd Ordnance Battalion in June 1985.

The 563rd was assigned to the 197th Ordnance Battalion in October 1991 due to the inactivation of the 3rd Ordnance Battalion.

619th Theater Air Support Company

The 619th Ordnance Company was constituted in the Army of the United States as the 619th Ordnance Ammunition Company in October 1942. The company was activated at Fort Knox, Ky. in November 1942 as an organic part of the armored force and was transferred to the European Theater in November 1943. For action in World War 11, the 619th was credited for participation in four campaigns and was awarded a Meritorious Unit Commendation. After the war, the unit was inactivated in February 1946 at Camp Kilmer, N.J.

In June 1949, the 619th was reactivated in Japan and later transferred to Korea where it participated in 10 campaigns and was awarded another Meritorious Unit Commendation and a Republic of Korea Presidential Unit Citation.

The unit was redesignated as the 619th Ordnance Company in April 1954, and in June 1955, it was inactivated in Korea. The 619th was reactivated in June 1959 at the U.S. Army Special Depot, Kriegsfeld, when Company A, 15th Ordnance Battalion was redesignated as the 619th Ordnance Company. The 619th was assigned to the 72nd Ordnance Battalion of the Advanced Weapons Support Command in May 1961. (The 15th Ordnance Battalion was activated in April 1942 and was inactivated in - February 1946, receiving credit for one campaign in World War II.)

With the inactivation of the 72nd Ordnance Battalion in September 1965, the company was assigned directly under AWSCOM. The 619th was again assigned to the 72nd Ordnance battalion when the battalion was reactivated in November 1972.

In November 1991, the 619th Ordnance Company was reassigned to the 197th Ordnance Battalion, relocated to Hahn Air Base, and redesignated as the 619th Theater Air Support Company (Provisional).

The 619th TASC is scheduled to be inactivated in August 1992.

(Source: Email from Andrew J. Johnson, former battalion commander, 1979-81)
From June 1979 – June 1981, I commanded the 197th Ordnance Battalion.

The headquarters was located at the old hospital in Munchweiler. Units assigned to the battalion were the 525th Ord Co / 556th MP Co located at Siegelsbach the 64th Ord Co. / 165th MP Co at Fischbach.

The 59th Ordnance Brigade was in being during my tenure as battalion commander. So, I find it strange to not see these units mentioned when one Googles 59th Ordnance Brigade.

The battalion provided direct and general support to nuclear capable units of 7th U.S. Corps, 56th Artillery Bde (Pershing), ReForger units assigned to 7th Corps, direct support to selected units of the 32nd Air Defense Artillery Brigade.

While I was in command, we averted an attack on the Fischbach Depot by the Red Army Gang. That is a very long and complicated tale.

Under the auspices of the USAREUR Long Range Security Program, we also built a new storage site at Fischbach and used it to develop and test new intrusion detection systems and site defense strategies.

During my tenure, it was the first time in over 10 years that the Ordnance and Military Police companies actually went out into the field during ReForger and practiced their skills in setting up and running ASPs. Our greatest challenge was keeping our radio/teletype rigs running so we could communicate with the III Corps and other headquarters.

The headquarters of the 84th Ordnance Battalion was also located at Munchweiler during my tenure as Commander of the 197th Ord Bn. Inter alia, they owned the 636th Ordnance Company located at nearby Clausen. It was my understanding that some or all of the 84th may have joined the 59th Ord Bde after 1981.

Here is a funny story about my time at the 197th. I had two depots, Siegelsbach and Fischbach. To go from Munchweiler to Siegelsbach and back was pretty much a long one day trip. One day, my driver and I returned to Munchweiler from Siegelsbach about midnight. When I got to the T in the road, I had two choices – go right and up the hill to Pirmasens and my bed or go left to Fischbach where no one would expect to see me. Yep. I went left. When I got to Fischbach, a soldier who had only arrived that week let me in. He never called his MP company headquarters. So, I drove out to the weapons storage area. I got to the guard shack just as they were loading up to go change the guards in the towers. I jumped on the truck and went along. When we got to tower #4, the phone rang. The soldier answered the phone and then said – its for you sir. It was my wife asking where I was. When I didn’t arrive at home as expected, she called the battalion. They told her I had left a long time ago. They sent folks out looking in the ditches. Finally, someone remembered my motto – be where they don’t expect it when they don’t expect it. They called Fischbach and confirmed I was there. Then they managed to cobble together an old WWII land line to connect my wife to the warhead storage area telephone.

OER data - 197th Ord Bn:
OER dated Nov 79: Rater = Deputy Cdr 59th Ord Bde and Deputy Cdr for CENTAG; Endorser = Commander 59th Ord Bde; Reviewer = Commander USAREUR. Looks like the 59th was a bit of an orphan.

OER dated Jul 80: Rater = Deputy Cdr 59th Ord Bde and Deputy Cdr for CENTAG; Senior Rater = Commander 59th Ord Bde

OER dated Jun 81: Rater = Deputy Cdr 59th Ord Bde and Deputy Cdr for CENTAG; Senior Rater = Commander 59th Ord Bde. Can’t say what the 59th was connected to at this point.

(Click here to read Col Johnson's recollections of his other assignments to 59th ORD units: 35th Arty Det; 525th Ord Co; USAREUR IG.)

(Source: 59th COURIER, October 1981)
197th Ordnance Battalion: 'remote but not isolated'

Wbile they are tucked away neatly into the countryside at three locations in central Germany, the men and women of the 197th Ordnance Battalion are by no means sidelined from the overall mission of the U.S. Army in Europe.

The 197th has a small headquarters company and organic units at two large ordnance depots in Germany.

While supporting the 32nd Army Air Defense Command (AADCOM), the 56th Field Artillery Brigade, the VII U.S. Corps and various NATO units with special ammunition, repair parts and maintenance, life for the soldiers assigned to the 197th continues.

Throughout the visits made to the company-sized elements that make up the 197th for this report, the term, "remote but not isolated" was constantly used in referring to duty within the battalion. To gain a better understanding, the following is a breakdown of the units, their locations and what the individual commands have done to boost a soldier's willingness to better perform their jobs on duty by offering things for their personal needs:

HHC 197th Ord
HHC 197th Ord. is located in Muenchweiler, a small town near the headquarters of the 59th Ordnance Brigade in Pirmasens. Headquarters company provides logistical, administrative and training support for the battalion's other units. Nestled in a wooded area of the picturesque Wasgau, Muenchweiler offers its residents a wide array of on-post facilities, including a small PX, movie theater, bowling alley, an auto crafts shop, a chapel, an NCO/EM club and a kindergarten/ 1st grade school.

One of the installation's many advantages is its easy accessibility to Pirmasens and to the Kaiserslautern area, 40 minutes away, which offers a diverse range of goods and services. Soldiers at the 197th headquarters are well-known throughout the 59th for their studiousness, with more than 10 percent of them having earned college degrees while stationed in Muenchweiler.

The 80 men and women at the headquarters also undergo rigorous training of all types throughout the year with journeys to Garmisch and Berchtesgaden for adventure training planned about every six months.

Fischbach Army Depot
A large portion of the battalion's assigned strength is based at the Fischbach Army Depot, a stone's throw away from the French border, about a half hour drive south of Muenchweiler.

One of the largest depots in Germany, covering more than 1,600 acres of land, Fischbach prides itself on its modern facilities and ideal settings.

Fischbach is home for two units of the 197th Ord. Bn. They are the 64th Ordnance Company and the 165th MP Company.

In all, Fischbach's population numbers between 500 and 600 people, according to newly installed Depot Commander, Capt. John Blackburn.

The 64th Ord. Co., says Blackburn, who also is in command of that unit, too, is made up pimarily of ammunition handlers and truck drivers who take charge of the 40 five-ton S & T Tractor Trailer rigs that are part of the 64th's mobile inventory.

In addition, the 64th also has an assembly platoon, ammunition maintenance platoon along with mechanics and a large signal section.

The 64th headquarters section employs the services of armorers, maintenance storage specialists, administrative soldiers and dining facility members

Projects underway
With all this activity, Blackburn readily points out that several Depot improvement projects are currently going on within the compound.

Presently all the on-depot living quarters have been completely renovated with exception of the women's billets. Plans for that building's total overhaul has already been included in the FY '82 maintenance budget. Also in the planning stages is a $150,000 rejuvenation project of the 64th's motorpool facilities, which, says Blackburn, "is long overdue."

Also underway is a rebuilding of the gymnasium at Fischbach. With a price tag set at $750,000, the new athletic center will include two new racquetball courts, showers and locker rooms for both men and women.

Because it's also part of the Pirmasens Military Community, a shuttle bus service is provided to and from Fischbach daily. The Depot also offers an education center, post exchange, chapel (under the direction of Chap. (Capt.) Larry Call), movie theater and a small but well-stocked commissary.

Fischbach also sports a two-lane bowling alley which surprisingly sees quite a bit of use. Currently bowling leagues are scheduled throughout the week to satisfy the dedicated keggler.

Fischbach also hosts a focal point for persons, both military and dependent, who are sick and may need to go to the nearby hospital at Muenchweiler. Depot aid station medic, Sp5 Vincent Maggio, is the man to see if you are ill. Maggio, a certified Emergency Medical Technician (EMT) has recently been given the nod by the Muenchweiler hospital to act as a screening agent at the Depot. With this title comes the responsibility of examining persons to determine if visits to the hospital are necessary. If they are not critical, Maggio can offer mild medication and an appointment to the hospital can be made for a later date.

Housing for persons living off-depot is possible, says Blackburn, depending on what people are able to afford. A liaison for the Pirmasens Community Housing Referral Office (HRO) makes visits to Fischbach three times each week, escorting prospective tenants to potential German renters.

The soldiers in Fischbach never cease to distinguish themselves, either by winning sports teams competitions or by having exceptional persons assigned to the Depot.

In fact, two soldiers from the 165th MP Co. earlier this year became the first husband and wife team to gain entrance into the prestigious Sergeant Morales Club. The two, Sgts Claude and Nancy Michel, credit the fine NCO development program within their unit in helping them achieve the honor.

Without a doubt, the pride of the entire Depot is found in that building where the elite meet to eat - the Fischbach dining facility.

The dining hall there has undergone some radical and at the same time noticeable changes.

SSgt. Wilfredo Cruz-Rios, Fischbach dining facility manager, recently took over the job after spending almost a year at the dining hall as its assistant manager. Now in total control, Cruz-Rios, a food specialist for his entire Army career, spanning almost nine years, has proceeded to make physical changes in the facility with the plan of making the visitor to his dining hall a happy one.

The Fischbach dining hall has 14 persons assigned to it. Six are cooks from the 165th MP Co., and the rest are part of the 64th Ord.

Averaging more than 200 persons per meal, the dining hall at Fischbach serves meals four times a day including a midnight chow call for shift workers.

Along with new cooking and serving utensils, the dining facility also has a brighter look about it with fresh paint on the walls, modern booth-like eating areas and even fresh flowers brought in daily on a volunteer basis by the civilian KPs working in the dining hall.

Specialty nights are also part of the
monthly menu at the Fischbach Depot. And there are plans for upcoming "Cook's Days
Off" where officers of the Depot will prepare and serve the meals.
"The Army dining facility is the place where morale can be built up or brought down. If a soldier comes in here and has a
good meal in a pleasant surrounding he will go back to his duty and do a better job," facility manager Cruz-Rios firmly believes.

Siegelsbach Army Depot
Two hours east of Muenchweiler and Fischbach is the town of Siegelsbach, home of the 525th Ordnance Company and the 556th MP Company. Similar to the Fischbach Army Depot, the Siegelsbach Army Depot is primarily concerned with providing security for its special ammunition and repair parts. The facility also supplies direct and general support maintenance as directed by brigade headquarters.

"No job too tough" is the unit motto of the 525th Ord. Co., while the 556th MP Co., is the home of the "Hell on paws, guardians of the night" dog kennels.

Siegelsbach also has a small EM club, an AAFES Annex PX, a coin operated vending machine operation, chapel and a combined gymnasium, weightroom, recreation center and library all under one roof. The library recently got a full-time librarian, Brenda Smith, to handle the larger than expected influx of customers that come and use the library.

The depot also has reconstructed billets for those living on post, an SQT learning center and auto crafts shop. Presently in the stages of being built is an indoor handball and raquetball court located next to the gym which is operated by NCOIC Josef Stroshine.

The Siegelsbach Depot's most recent addition was unveiled at the 525th's Organization Day activities held Sept. 12.

A new multi-event confidence course was formally opened for use by soldiers stationed at Siegelsbach. The course, mapped out through the hilly terrain inside the Siegelsbach compound, was constructed by two soldiers of the 525th. Pvts. 2 Gary Wright and Rick Bornand who spent three weeks laying out the site routing the 22-event series of coordination and sheer muscle tests through the woodlands at Siegelsbach and are proud of their accomplishment. Future plans call for the course to be used by platoons challenging one another in timed competitions and proposed matches pitting Depot NCOs against one another.

The closest major military community to Siegelsbach is Heilbronn, a city with a population of more than 90,000 persons and is the center of community support for the Depot. Military buses run back and forth a half dozen times daily between Heilbronn and Siegelsbach, a distance of 20 kilometers.

The installation sponsors monthly travel tours to Heidelberg and Stuttgart, excursions to Berchtesgaden for mountain climbing, raft races down the Neckar River and frequent Volksmarching.

With fine on-post facilities and beautiful, historic Germany as a backdrop, servicemembers of the 197th always have something to do.



HHD, 197th Ord Bn Münchweiler
64th Ord Co (Sp Ammo Dep Spt) Fischbach  
165th MP Co Fischbach  
525th Ord Co (Sp Ammo Dep Spt) Siegelsbach
556th MP Co Siegelsbach  
If you have more information on the history or organization of the 197th Ord Bn, please contact me.

64th Ordnance Company

Ammunition storage magazines and M&A Building, Fischbach Area I, 1993 (Rolf Birnstein)
(Source: name withheld)

64th Ordnance Company Organization, c. 1980
64th Ordnance Company
When I got to the 64th Ordnance Company as a brand new Lieutenant (with prior US Military Service, so I wasn't that stupid), it was Major Blackburn not Captain, and the XO (Executive Officer) was newly promoted Captain Todd Smith. My original sponsor was First Lieutenant Matthew Bird.

I was assigned to be the Platoon Leader for Bravo Platoon (Storage and Issue). Both Alpha Platoon and Bravo Platoon were basically at half strength. My Platoon Sergeant was an E-5. The Platoon was half Vehicle Operators and half Ammunition Handlers. Because to the personnel shortage we highly recommended (pressured) the vehicle operators to learn ammunition handling (really a pain to get them Security Clearances) and the ammunition handlers to learn to be vehicle operators. About 60 percent of my vehicles were operational, some were the motor pool queens (never went anywhere).

A classmate of mine, Lieutenant Michael Davis, became the Alpha Storage and Issue Platoon Leader. He was also prior US Military Service like me so he wasn't so bad either. His Platoon was in better shape, about 3/4 authorized strength and maybe about 80 percent of his vehicles were operational.

The next problem dumped on my full plate (I was also learning to pull SANRAS (Nuclear Control Order) Duty and was OJT (On the Job Training) to be a Nuclear Weapons Courier Officer (CH-47s)) was to locate all the missing trailers for the 64th Ordnance Company, starting with those misplaced somewhere on the entire Depot. Speculation was that if we left a trailer somewhere it was used and moved by the other Fischbach Depot tenant unit, the 41st Ordnance Detachment. So I had to check each trailer by serial number after finding them on hill sides, on the logging trails, between two or more trees (how they got that way, who knows). Then the real pain in the arse, finding all the trailer panels.

Eventually we got a real Motor Pool Officer, CW2 Smerl, and our vehicles magically got fixed (we did not ask how and did not want to know). We were now at ERC A like we were supposed to be.

Captain Kennedy, the Operations Officer, had to put up with quite a lot. We were flying CH-47 missions all the time eventually landing at Ramstein AB to off load, then flying back to Fischbach, since something happened to the 9th Ordnance Company (something about those nasty NWTIs (Nuclear Weapons Technical Inspection) and a Decertification requiring Training and Recertifications.

There was also the routine problems of getting everyone weapons qualified (as Fischbach did not have the Rifle Range at the time, Captain Todd Smith and Captain Kennedy wrote up the paperwork turned in by Major Blackburn, one of my "Additional Duties" later was Range Officer). With a serious face Captain Kennedy informed me that I would have the Additional Duty of OIC of the 64th Ordnance Company's Airhead (I was thinking to myself who the "Airhead" is), since I was Air Assault Qualified. I think he already knew that we would be flying all the 9th Ordnance Company's Air Missions. So I rewrote the 64th Ordnance Company's Standard Operations Procedures, to include "Ground Guides" and safety equipment (goggles, vests, flashlights with "donkey dicks", etc.) better Fire Extinguishers (the big ones on wheels), our Fire Truck on standby, replacing the wind sock, etc.. I added grounding rods and straps; that wasn't done.

We were continually flying around picking up Nike Hercules Warheads, delivering them to Ramstein for loading on to C-141s; picking up Pershing Warheads for maintenance, delivering Pershing Warheads, picking up the old 8 inch, delivering the new 8 inch, etc.. In that time I had almost a hundred Air Missions successfully accomplished, and ended up in two accidents (emergency landings, one that had me bent over with a sore back, that I had to go to Munchweiler to get treated), you know it is really bad when the Crew Chief is in the back pouring hydraulic fluid in and the hydraulic fluid is coming out faster than he can pour it in. And your two Warhead Guards near the rear ramp are covered in hydraulic fluid.

Or my other (later third accident) when you are a Senior Courier Officer (sitting in the Commander's Fold down seat) and you hear over the headset the Pilot tell the Co Pilot, "We are going down". It is either bravery of us or stupidity getting off a "Dead Bird" after the accident transloading the Nuclear Weapons on to another, getting on (with cold sweats) and continuing the Mission; happened a few months after the Crash at Mannheim and the Grounding of all the CH-47s was lifted and we had to catch up for all the Air Missions that were not accomplished during that time.

I finally got a Platoon Sergeant, SSG (E-6) Davis.

A NWTI Certification for my Storage and Issue Platoon that had to be accomplished was the capability to road convoy. So empty nuclear weapons containers were loaded with sandbags, forklifted on the trailers at the "Area" (the Military Police did not see what we were doing) attached to the tractors and rolled out of the "Area." The Military Police were having fits (no one told them they were "empties"). So we had radios in the cabs of the tractors for command and control and went on our way to and from a designated location, followed by the Maintenance Vehicle and Tow Truck. Nothing broke down and we returned so the 64th Ordnance Company was Ground Convoy Certified.

My time in Grade was waivered as I already from prior US Military Service had the required Time In Service and I was promoted to First Lieutenant. The promotion required that I leave my Platoon, men and women to a higher position. So I was assigned to the Maintenance And Assembly Platoon at the "Area". My Senior NCO was MSG Whitfield. And my senior Warrant Officer was CW3 Chance (who was also incharge of the Calibrations Section). I had three Maintenance Teams. The other Warrant Officers were CWO Rios, and CWO Caudill.

My Storage and Issue Platoon was turned over to a brand new Lieutenant (no prior US Military Service) after a week the members of the Bravo Storage and Issue Platoon were begging me to come back. I kept telling them to give him a chance.

We passed our part of the NWTI while I was the Maintenance and Assembly Platoon Leader/Shop Officer. Really big sigh of relief.

WADS Project
I was then selected by name to the 59th Ordnance Brigade, Assistant Chief of Staff Security and Intelligence. To be the 59th Ordnance Brigade Project Manager for the Weapons Access Delay System (WADS). The entire project was a mess as no one organized anything, and everything that was received (blueprints, technical specifications, documentation, messages, etc.) was just dumped into boxes and shoved into the corners of any storage space (classified or not).

They panicked when ODCSOPS USAREUR started demanding progress reports, since JCS was asking ODCSOPS for progress reports. My guess would be that if everything fell thru, it would be easier to blame the Lieutenant (me). Fortunately, a hobby was Mechanical Drafting (drawing Blueprints) so I knew how to read Blueprints and correlate them to the technical specifications. So for days and nights by my lonesome I was getting everything organized, I did not know how to "Empire Build", to create my own staff to help me; as everyone in the office already were overloaded with their own work.

I started to realize the extent of the near Billion USDs Weapons Access Delay System that was scheduled to be implemented at all 59th Ordnance Brigade Locations, SETAF (Italy, Turkey, etc.), and my roles with USAREUR, Project Manager Nuclear Munitions (PM Nuc), EUCOM (SACREUR), JCS, etc.. My new boss, the Assistant Chief of Staff, LTC Harris, did not realize the extent (no one told him what he had gotten into), so I ended up with many "Additional Duties" of EMAS "A" Side Duty (Nuclear Control Orders), Security Clearance Processing Officer (yes, I screened most of your Security Clearance requests and renewals, since my signature was on the bottom as the blame line, after the Security Clearance NCO stacked them neatly on my desk), Tactical and Strategic Order of Battle Analysis, VIP Protection (Commanding Officer, Congressional and Presidential Visits) aka OIC of the "Palace Guards" (MSG Roberts was the NCOIC, yes, I dumped ("delegated") most of the Palace Guard stuff on him), Armored VIP Vehicles (after the General Dozier kidnapping, coordination with Provost Marshall USAREUR), Inconspicuous Body Armor (Bulletproof Vests)(this also went to MSG Roberts), etc..

Yes, I was the guy that was running around your Sites, "From the Brigade", looking in the Ammunition Storage Magazines to figure out if the Weapons Access Delay System would fit, as well as continually nagging you for your Planographs (I was in my office when not on Duty, or TDY, sweating with my personal Mechanical Drafting equipment and sharpened pencils drawing in WADS on copies), then sending messages to ODCSOPS USAREUR, PM NUC, EUCOM, JCS, etc.. Many times when you did not send the Planographs I ended up missing a few pounds of my arse (I usually let you know that I needed your Planographs a month ahead of time, knowing the requirements (Regulations) for updates after movements, maintenance, etc.). Many times I had to redraw the Planographs to scale including the weapons, I used a scaled metal template (stencil) for the weapons made from a soda can.

Eventually, the Commander, 59th Ordnance Brigade was starting to get nasty grams (messages). And afterwards I was required to give daily Weapons Access Delay System (WADS) progress briefing to first the 59th Ordnance Brigade Deputy Chief of Staff Operations, COL Voss, and then the Chief of Staff, COL Piff and then to the Commander, 59th Ordnance Brigade. This was the days of time consuming transparencies and overhead projectors, not Microsoft Powerpoint.

Many times to fight for the 59th Ordnance Brigade Units, I ended up driving like a bat out of hell in my POV to the US Army Corps of Engineers at the Abrams Complex at Frankfurt to have talks with the Engineers.

The WADS Project is finally caught up and up to speed.

I am promoted to Captain again time in Grade was waivered. It was kind of bad for the WADS Project Manager (Officer) to be a First Lieutenant when everyone being coordinated with for the 59th Ordnance Brigade was a LTC or higher.

The WADS Project is moved (with me) to the Assistant Chief of Staff Material, LTC Jones. I create my own Branch, AEUSA-MN (Munitions Nuclear). However, I still have my Additional Duties of EMAS (Nuclear Control Orders), new one the 59th Ordnance Brigade's Worldwide Ammunition Reporting System (WARS, Nuclear Weapons, Chemical Weapons, and Conventional Munitions)(think punch cards), new one Classified Document Word Processing (the only secure Top Secret Word Processing in the whole Brigade), new one Wartime Augmentee to Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe (SHAPE) Nuclear Operations (and yes, I did have to go to Belgium to participate in their Field Exercise (yes, they do go to the Field)).

Started going to Site 59 and having long talks with the 330th Ordnance Company, the 110th Military Police Company, etc. and then start to get everyone concerned with the WADS Project, NOT to put it into Site 59.

I start going all over Europe to coordinate with the US Army Corps of Engineers Contracting Officer Representatives (CORs) since the real construction is going to start. Most are unaware that this (WADS Construction) is going on in their Areas of Responsibility, since it seems that the Headquarters US Army Corps of Engineers at D.C. did not let them know. Nor do they realize the extent nor the seriousness. I drive to the US Army Corps of Engineers at the Abrams Complex, Frankfurt, and let them know, they send out high priority messages.

The 59th Ordnance Brigade Units start to complain, as many did not read the message traffic addressed to multiple units (including theirs), indicating the WADS construction is starting. The Military Police Companies are unprepared (not told by the Ordnance Company Operations Officers). I had one Ordnance Company Commander, scream at me, saying "You do not know what it is like at the Companies", everyone in the office was wondering what was all that about. I informed him that I have already been a S&I (Storage and Issue) Platoon Leader and Maintenance and Assemby Platoon Leader. The Nuclear Weapons Maintenance Warrant Officers in the next Office peered around to corner to see what was going on. My boss, the ACSM, LTC Jones, took the Ordnance Company Commander aside and had a talk with him. Afterwards, the Company Commander and I sat down and calmly talked about how to solve his problems.

I really could not blame him, the stress of a "Zero Defects, Zero Error" environment of a Nuclear Weapons Ordnance Company would make anyone snap. Like when I was a Courier Officer we flew a mission way north (delivering some Pershing Warheads), after landing and my Military Police guard force secured the area 360 degrees around the helicopters (Mission Birds), the Germans that were going to off load demanded to go to lunch. The Commander almost went ballistic, he pulled his pistol (we still had M1911s) out and pointed it at the German NCO (I was on the opposite side of the German NCO's head, I would either get shot also or have his blood and brains splattered all over me at the very least), the Commander screamed at the German NCO to off load now his face was turning red, the German NCO said that he would talk to his men. A few minutes later the Nuclear Weapons were off loaded. As soon as the Hand Receipt was signed by them, my Military Police Guard Force, my Warhead Guards, all got on the CH-47s and got the hell out of there. I never reported what happened (I knew a lot of people that would have wanted to do the same thing.)).

Ironically, it was after all this that I attended the Ordnance Officer's Advanced Course and was formally taught Project Management (MS Degree). And much later at CAS3, CGSC, etc. that I was formally trained to give Briefings. Already did both successfully at the 59th Ordnance Brigade.

Many ask would I do this all again. And I have to say, it was never about me, or the Missions, it was always about the Outstanding men, and women that I worked with of the 59th Ordnance Brigade.

signed Anonymous (Most people that know the events above, know who I am).

41st Ord Det -- The other unit that occupied Fischbach Depot was the 41st Ordnance Detachment.  The 41st Ordnance Detachment was responsible for the maintenance of the Lance Missiles (Missile sections), due to the volatility of the propellant, red fuming nitric acid, large areas were required (just in case) for explosive safety distances.
The German Civilians mistook the 41st Ordnance Detachment as a Chemical Weapons Unit, due to the protective requirements when working with red fuming nitric acid.
WADS Project -- For the US Army Corps of Engineers, EUD Frankfurt, Project Manager Nuclear Munitions, WADS started 1979-1980, for the 59th Ordnance Brigade it actually began 1981.  In 1984 USAREUR actually assigned two full time "Action" Officers to WADS, prior to that it was an Additional Duty for a General ODCSOPS, LTC ODCSOPS (Nuclear Munitions), Major USAREUR Provost Marshall, COL ODCSSI, LTC PM Nuc, COL Corps of Engineers, etc..  While at the 64th Ordnance Company, as the Maintenance and Assembly Platoon Leader (highest Ranking Officer at Area 1), I was involved with the actual destructive testing to defeat WADS Prototypes with the US Army Special Forces (details of what we did is still classified) as to how I got first got involved with WADS.  Those are the reasons that I was considered as the WADS expert, including external to USAREUR (Classified Locations).
Fischbach Depot & Area I

Fischbach Ordnance Depot, c. 1980
Fischbach Depot was divided up into two main areas, "outside the fence" (Administrative) and "inside the fence" (Mission).  The odd part about Fischbach "outside the fence" (Administrative) Depot was that it was split in two by a German Civilian Access Road.  On one side was the Administrative side of the 64th Ordnance Company, Soldiers Billets, Dining Facility, All Ranks Club, PX, Commissary, Stars and Stripes Bookstore, Barbershop, Theater.  On the other side of the German Civilian Road was the 165th MP Company, 64th Ordnance Motor Pool, 165th MP Company Motor Pool, Bowling Alley.
The majority of the work areas for the 64th Ordnance Company were divided into two, Administrative and Mission, with the Operations Building being a separate entity (Location) from the Administrative Headquarters "outside the fence".
The Fischbach storage facility was divided up into different Areas: Area I, Area II, etc., this made things much easier to identify, coordinate, etc..  So when individuals stated that they were going to the "area", they were usually referring to Area 1.

Fischbach Area I
The "Area" (Area 1), was inside the Secure Area "inside the Fence", outside of the Secure Area was the Site Security Center manned by the Military Police as well as the Towers, and parameter fences.
The work performed on the Nuclear Weapons was done at the then new Multi Million USDs Maintenance and Assembly Building inside the Secure Area.

Fischbach Airhead -- There were actually two locations for Helicopters to land (at Fischbach Depot):  1. Administrative (marked on flight maps).  2. Inside the Secure Area (marked as restricted air space).
During the time when the 9th Ordnance Company failed their Nuclear Weapons Technical Inspection (NWTI) and we ended up flying their Air Missions, during one mission we had four mission Helicopters (landed on concrete pads), two guard force Helicopters (landed on grassy area above M&A Building) and one Air Mission Commander (UH-1)(landed on Helicopter pad) land at one time at Area 1 (marked on the aerial photo).

The 55Bs (Munitions Handlers) and MHE (Forklifts drivers) were pissed beyond all belief.  As during those days everything was done almost as precise as a German Train Schedule, to prevent observation by USSR Satellites, the 55B and MHE (Forklift Drivers) were humping to get everything out of the Ammunition Magazines and load the Helicopters. 

To say that flying in and out of Area 1 was hazardous is an understatement as the tree line (tall trees) were only a few feet from the "rabbit fence" (you can see this in the aerial photo), the Germans refused to let us cut them down. 

Fischbach Area I - concrete landing pads for helicopters (foreground) (Rolf Birnstein)
Special Weapons Ordnance Depots -- Miesau (9th Ordnance Company) was GS/Depot, Fischbach (64th Ordnance Company) was DS and alternate GS/Depot, Kriegsfeld (619th Ordnance Company) was DS.

This is why the 9th Ordnance Company (Theater Support) was actually the the size of a Battalion to Brigade when all the attachments and 9th Ordnance Company Operationally Controlled Units are added:
9th Ordnance Company (411 Officers, Warrant Officers (11, indicating the numbers of Maintenance Teams and QAs), Senior NCOs, NCOs, Enlisted),

OPCON to 9th Ordnance Company: 164th Military Police Company, 189th Heavy Transportation Company (Wheeled), 295th Aviation Company (Medium Lift, CH-47s), Elements of the 22nd Aviation Detachment, USAF Security Detachments at Ramstein AFB and Hahn AFB, etc.. versus say Fischbach (64th Ordnance Company) or Kriegsfield with about 3 Maintenance Teams (Warrant Officers) and 1 (Warrant Officer) as Quality Assurance (QA).

This is why when the 9th Ordnance Company failed their Nuclear Weapons Technical Inspection (NWTI) and the 9th Ordnance Company's Mission was switched to the 64th Ordnance Company, we at the 64th Ordnance Company were almost overwhelmed (we had almost a hundred less people and materials to do the 9th Ordnance Company Missions while still being DS/GS Corps Support. When I was the Maintenance And Assembly/Shop Officer, I had a General Officer (Corps Commander) accompanied by Major Blackburn visit me (a lowly Lieutenant) at my Maintenance and Assembly Shop and ask me what he could do to get "his nukes" out of my Shop faster; so I asked my Senior 260 Warrant Officer, CW3 Chance, and my NCOIC MSG Whitfield. Physically all my Crews were exhausted. We were working on Pershing Warheads and the retrograde of the Nike Hercules Warheads (9th Ordnance Company Mission switched to the 64th Ordnance Company). The main problem was the condition of the Pershing Warheads and Containers (left in the weather by our Customers), as they had to be stripped and all rust removed then repainted. What was slowing us down was we ran out of sand paper. That is what I told the Corps Commander. Within a couple of days full pallets of sand paper showed up. A second Warrant Officer and Crew were Certified to work on Pershing Warheads. Later it became high priority for the 64th Ordnance Company Maintenance and Assembly Building to become CARC (Chemical Agent Resistant Coating) spray painting certified.). I also told the Corps Commander to have his people stop washing the Pershings down with high pressure fire hoses as when my Crews opened up the Warhead section water would come pouring out of the Warhead section or while being shipped would have gallons of water in the bottom of the Warhead Containers. (I was previously trained as Field Artillery (13), Infantry (11/18), Wheeled and Tracked Vehicle Maintenance (Officer SSI 90/91), Conventional Munitions (Officer SSI 75A/B), Missile Maintenance (Officer SSI 73A), Nuclear/Chemical Weapons (Officer SSI 75C), etc. So it was really hard to pull one over on me, I knew that they were using the fire hoses because we did the same thing before (non nuclear), like our own vehicles and trailers.).

So while the 64th Ordnance Company was doing both the 64th Ordnance Company's Mission and the 9th Ordnance Company's Mission, we were conducting Air Missions non stop; from the 64th Ordnance Company (weapons that were maintained) to the Supported Units, from the 9th Ordnance Company (the weapons that they had, prior to Decertification) to the 64th Ordnance Company then to the 9th Ordnance Company's Customers. And the Retrogrades of the Nike Hercules Warheads. This is how most of us ended up with over a hundred Complete Air Missions (flights to and from count as one Air Mission). This was temporarily stopped after the CH-47 crash at Mannheim, and resumed after the cause was determined and corrected (Walnut Shell particles). Then the 64th Ordnance Company had to play catch up, especially getting the Nike Hercules Warheads to Ramstein Air Force Base (the USAF was pissed having to reschedule their "Special Air Mission" C-141 Flights.).

SW Ordnance units in support of US Forces, mid/late 1970s
Special Weapons Ordnance Battalions -- The Ordnance Battalions (72nd & 197th -- 2 Ordnance Companies, 2 Military Police Companies) were set up to support the two Corps (V, and VII), the Field Artillery Groups, USAAGs, and NATO. The 3rd Ordnance Battalion (Theater Support) was responsible for the levels of Support above the other Battalions. Just like for other Support Organizations there is DS (Direct Support), GS (General Support), and finally Depot Support, these are after the Unit Level Operator Maintenance and Organizational Level Maintenance. This is why the 59th Ordnance Brigade was physically spread out all over Europe (reasonable distance to your Customers).

The 3rd Ordnance Battalion (Theater Support) actually provided GS and Depot Support (if the items could not be retrograded). The 3rd Ordnance Battalion (Theater Support) previously known as the Special Troops Battalion, then the Theater Support Battalion, finally the 3rd Ordnance Battalion.

The 3rd Ordnance Battalion (Theater Support) consisted of the 9th Ordnance Company, 164th Military Police Company, 330th Ordnance Company, 110th Military Police Company, 763rd Medical Detachment and Medical Facility, 41st Ordnance Company, 563rd Ordnance Company, 98th Chem Detachment, etc..

The 72nd Ordnance Battalion then consisted of the 619th Ordnance Company, the 545th Ordnance Company and associated Military Police Companies.

The 197th Ordnance Battalion consisted of the 64th Ordnance Company, the 525th Ordnance Company and associated Military Police Companies. .

After the time frame (1970s) in discussion, most of the Ordnance Companies became Regional Based. So that the Ordnance Company closer to the Battalion physical location became part of that Battalion.

Just some details, for the longest time we still wore the USAREUR Flaming Sword and Rainbow, on Fatigues. We switched first to Battle Dress Uniforms (cost money to remove from Fatigue Uniforms and sew on the name tags, US Army, Unit Patches, Rank and Branch). 8-14 BDU uniforms (7 Summer, 7 Winter) plus Dress Uniforms. Then, while at the Headquarters 59th Ordnance Brigade, we switched to the 59th Ordnance Brigade patch (some mocked "pervert patch").

525th Ordnance Company

82nd Ordnance Battalion (AMMO)

(Source: Email from Bob Cherveny)
Ran across your website and it brought back some good memories of my time in the service. I was RA and stationed at Siegelsbach for the last half of my 3 year tour with the Army.

I arrived in Siegelsbach in June of 1964 and rotated out in December of 1965. I was a 631.10 Wheeled and Tracked Vehicle Mechanic assigned to the 525th Ordnance Company.

While I was there we were an AWSCOM Company with HQ in Pirmasens, FRG. The unit patch I wore was white with two Fleur'de lis and an arrow head pointing up in the middle of the patch.

There was a detachment of the 556th Military Police also stationed there while I was there.

On post we had a 2-lane bowling alley, snack bar where they pulled a sheet across half of the room to show movies, and an NCO club, but everyone could go in. It had American beer and German beer along with 4 or 5 slot machines. I was the first person to hit a jackpot on the dime machine and thought I was in heaven. I think I won $30 or $50 bucks.

It was a good time that I spent in Germany. Fond memories.

(Source: Email from Andrew J. Johnson, 525th Ord Co, 1965-66)
In January 1965, I transitioned from Air Defense Artillery to Ordnance.

From January 1965 to January 1966, I served as Storage Platoon Leader in the 525th Ordnance Company located at Siegelsbach, Germany near Heilbronn.

A chart which I found on the web is reportedly from the mid-1960s and shows the company to be a part of the 82nd Ordnance Battalion. I have an 82nd Ordnance Battalion crest in box of old paraphernalia. I also have a photo of me showing the 71st Ordnance Group (COMZEUR-TASCOM) patch on my left shoulder.

While serving in the 525th, I not only ensured that warheads were safely and neatly tucked away in storage igloos, I frequently ran convoys all the way to the North Sea, and in the area around Heilbronn, to deliver weapons to and pick up weapons from Artillery / Air Defense Artillery Custodial Detachments and U.S. Artillery and Air Defense units.

I remember the term AWSCOM.

OER data - 525th Ord Co:
OER dated July 1965: Endorser = Commander 525th Ord Co; Reviewer = XO 82d Ord Bn. This demonstrates that at this time, the 525th was a part of the 82nd Ord Bn and likely so was the 556th MP Co.

OER dated Jan 66: Endorser = Commander 525th Ord Co.; Reviewer = Col OrdC, HQ AWSCOM. This shows the 525th to have been a part of AWSCOM at this point in time.

(Click here to read Col Johnson's recollections of his other assignments to 59th ORD units: 35th Arty Det; USAREUR IG; 197th Ord Bn.)


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