14th Engineer Battalion (Combat)
14th Engineer Battalion (Corps)
The mission of the 14th Engineer Battalion (Combat) is to, on order, deploy worldwide and conduct engineer operations in support of Army, Joint or Combined operations.
The parent unit of the 14th Engineer Battalion (Combat) was first constituted on 1 October 1933 in the Regular Army as the 36th Engineers and activated on 1 June 1941 at Plattsburg Barracks, New York. It was redesignated on 1 August 1942 as the 36th Engineer Combat Regiment. The 14th Engineer Battalion traces its lineage to the 2nd Battalion, 36th Engineers.
The Battalion fought with distinction in 10 campaigns during World War II, including 5 amphibious beach assaults: Algeria/French, Morocco, Sicily, Naples, Anzio, and Southern France. The Regimental shoulder patch included a sea horse reflecting the unit's amphibious operations, and was also on the 14th Engineer Battalion insignia. In addition to numerous combat engineer missions, the Battalion frequently fought as Infantry, including 47 continuous days at Anzio Beachhead.
On 15 February 1945, while in Poxonne, Germany, the Regiment was broken up and its elements reorganized and redesignated. 2nd Battalion was reorganized and redesignated as as the 2827th Engineer Combat Battalion. Headquarters and Headquarters and Service Company, 36th Engineers became the Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 36th Engineer Combat Group; 1st Battalion, 36th Engineers became the 2826th Engineer Combat Battalion; and 3rd Battalion, 36th Engineers became the 2828th Engineer Combat Battalion, all of which thereafter had separate lineages. After returning from Europe, the 2827th Engineer Combat Battalion was inactivated on 25 February 1946 at Camp Kilmer, New Jersey.
The 2827th Engineer Combat Battalion was redesignated on 29 April 1947 as the 14th Engineer Combat Battalion, and activated on 15 March 1950 in Kisarazu, Honshu, Japan, as part of the post-war occupation forces. From there the Battalion was subsequently deploy to Korea.
The 14th Engineer Combat Battalion landed at Pohong Dong, Korea on 18 July 1950, and participated in every major campaign of the Korean War. The Battalion was awarded the Meritorious Unit Commendation (less Company A) for fighting as Infantry with the 25th Infantry Division and Task Force Allen, and for its role in the breakout of the Pusan Perimeter. A Company earned a Meritorious Unit Commendation for combat infantry missions in support of the 1st Cavalry Division, and a Korean Presidential Unit Citation for clearing minefields on Line Golden. The Battalion was redesignated on 15 March 1954 as the 14th Engineer Battalion.
The 14th Engineer Battalion was inactivated on 25 June 1958 in Korea. The Battalion was reactivated on17 June 1962 at Fort Bragg, North Carolina where it served until alerted it would be deployed to the Republic of Vietnam.
The 14th Engineer Battalion deployed to Vietnam on 19 October 1966 and participated in 12 campaigns throughout a 5-year period. The Battalion earned a Meritorious Unit Commendation for its role in Operations Gatling and Summerall, and was awarded the Republic of Vietnam Civil Actions Unit Citation. 2nd Platoon, A Company was awarded the Presidential Unit Citation while supporting 2nd Battalion, 7th Cavalry during operations in Binh Thuan Province. The Battalion served with such units as the 1st Cavalry Division and the 101st Airborne Division. Volunteers from the Battalion also hauled ammunition to the surrounded Marines in the Khe Sahn during Operation Pegasus.
The 14th Engineer Battalion returned to the United States in late August of 1971, and a new home at Fort Ord, California, where they assimilated the mission and personnel of the 613th Engineer Battalion. On 3 February 1989, the 761st Chemical Company was assigned to the Battalion, and deployed to Saudi Arabia the following year in support of Operations Desert Shield and Desert Storm, returning in April 1991. As a result of the military drawdown in the 1990s and the closure of Fort Ord, the Battalion was moved to Fort Lewis, Washington in the summer of 1993. The 761st Chemical Company inactivated as a result of the drawdown.
In April of 1999, B Company was redesignated as a National Guard Unit still attached to the Battalion, and on 16 July 1999, the 11th Chemical Company was assigned to the Battalion. The 14th Engineer Battalion, the only remaining Corps wheeled engineer battalion on active duty, and one of the most decorated active duty engineer battalions in the US Army, remained at Fort Lewis, Washington as part of 555th Combat Engineer Group and US Forces Command (FORSCOM). The Battalion's mission at that time was to, on order, deploy and conduct engineer operations as a member of the combined arms team.
The 14th Engineer Battalion deployed to Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF) with the 555th Combat Engineer Group and the 4th Infantry Division from April 2003 to April 2004. During this time the Battalion supported numerous missions and was most noted for starting Operation Trailblazer to search for and destroy improvised explosive devices (IEDs). The Battalion received the Valorous Unit Award for its efforts.
The 14th returned to Iraq a second time with the 555th Combat Support Brigade (Maneuver Enhancement) from November 2005 to October 2006 for Operation Iraqi Freedom 05-07 to continue the route clearance mission using new state of the art armored equipment in support of the 101st Airborne Division and Multi-National Division North. The 122nd Engineer Company (South Carolina Army National Guard) was attached to the Battalion to form Task Force Trailblazer. The 14th Engineer Battalion completed over 100 construction projects, cleared thousands of kilometers of road, and neutralized over 700 IEDs. The Battalion received the Meritorious Unit Commendation and was awarded the Combat Action Battalion Streamer for 67 percent of Soldiers in the Battalion earning the Combat Action Badge.
The 14th Engineer Battalion (Combat) transformed to a modular combat effects battalion in 20 February 2007, with the inactivation of Companies A and C and the activation of an organic Forward Support Company, the 570th and 571st Sapper Companies, and the 610th Engineer Support Company. The Headquarters and Headquarters Company was also reorganized as a Headquarters Support Company. The 22nd Engineer Company (Route Clearance) was subsequently added to the unit.
The Battalion returned for its third and longest tour in Iraq for Operation Iraqi Freedom 08-09 from 12 April 2008 to 1 July 2009, where it provided route clearance, construction, and Iraq Army partnership throughout Multi-National Corps Iraq. It cleared over 140 IEDs, completed 122 troop construction projects, managed $34 million in Commanders Emergency Relief Projects to improve Civil Capacity, and trained elements of four Iraqi Field Engineer Regiments.
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