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18th Engineer Brigade

Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 18th Engineer Brigade was first constituted on 29 July 1921 in the Organized Reserves as the 347th Engineers and organized in February 1922 in Missouri with Headquarters at Kansas City. The unit was inactivated on 22 January 1942 in Minnesota.

The unit was reactivated on 6 May 1942 at Camp Claiborne, Louisiana, and concurrently ordered into active military service. On 1 August 1942, the unit was reorganized and redesignated as the 347th Engineer General Services Regiment. The Regiment deployed to England in February 1944. It entered combat in France on 29 June 1944 and participated in the Normandy, Northern France, Rheinland and Central Europe campaigns of World War II, earning its first Meritorious Unit Commendation. After V-E Day, the Regiment remained on occupation duty in Germany until it was inactivated on 1 June 1946.

On 15 June 1947, the Regiment was reactivated in the Organized Reserves, headquartered in Salt Lake, Utah. The organized Reserves were redesignated on 25 March 1948 as the Organized Reserve Corps and again on 9 July 1952 as the Army Reserve. The Regiment remained in Salt Lake, Utah until it was again inactivated on 16 March 1949.

Headquarters and Headquarters and Service Company, 347th Engineer General Service Regiment was redesignated on 25 October 1954 as Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 18th Engineer Brigade. It was concurrently withdrawn from the Army Reserve, allotted to the Regular Army, and activated at Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri. The remainder of the Regiment was disbanded. It was inactivated on 26 March 1963 at Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri.

The 18th Engineer Brigade was reactivated on 16 July 1965 at Fort Bragg, North Carolina and prepared for deployment to Vietnam. From September 1965 until December 1966, the US Army Engineer Command, Vietnam (Provisional) was created and the 18th Engineer Brigade became responsible for engineer support in the I and II Corps Tactical Zones subordinate to that entity. The Brigade Headquarters was located at Dong Ba Thin. The Brigade was inactivated on 20 September 1971 in Vietnam. Over the 6 years the Brigade served in Vietnam, it participated in 14 of the 17 campaigns for the conflict, earning 4 more Meritorious Unit Citations.

On 21 October 1977, the 18th Engineer Brigade was reactivated at Karlsruhe, Germany. For the next 15 years, the Brigade served as the principal construction brigade for the United States Army Europe and Seventh US Army. During this period, the Brigade performed numerous construction, rehabilitation and renovation missions in military communities and training areas throughout USAREUR. Most noteworthy were the massive range upgrade of the Grafenwoehr Major Training Area in the early 1980's, and the construction of the Range 23 complex at the Wildflecken Major Training Area in 1989 and 1990. Additionally, the Brigade was responsible for providing topographic support to the European Theater.

In 1990 and 1991, during Operations Desert Shield and Desert Storm, the 18h Engineer Brigade provided rail and sea deployment support to VII Corps and, in addition, deployed a Combat Heavy Battalion and Topographic Company to support VII Corps operations in southwest Asia. In April 1991, the Brigade Headquarters, along with the subordinate Combat Heavy Battalion, deployed to Zakho, Iraq in support of Operation Provide Comfort. While there, the Brigade coordinated all engineer efforts of a Combined Joint engineer force providing construction and relief support to the Kurdish refugees. The 18th Engineer Brigade was awarded the Joint Meritorious Unit Award for its action during Operation Provide Comfort. As part of the reduction of forces in Europe, the Brigade was inactivated on 15 October 1992.

On 18 October 2002 the Vice Chief of Staff of the Army approved the USAREUR and Seventh US Army Concept Plan to activate the Theater Army Engineer Brigade (TAEB), beginning the process in 2000. The 18th Engineer Brigade (Theater Army) was activated on 21 January 2003. In February 2003, portions of the Brigade deployed to Turkey in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom. While serving as part of US Army Forces - Turkey (ARFOR-Turkey), the Brigade played a significant role in the establishment of a 700-mile line of communications stretching across southern Turkey.

The Brigade was formally activated on 6 June 2004 in Germany. In July 2004, the 18th Engineer Brigade deployed to Bulgaria as the Command and Control element for all US forces involved in Bulwark 04, involving US and Bulgarian forces. This exercise set the stage for what became known as Joint Task Force East.

In April of 2005, 18th Engineer Brigade deployed to Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom VI as Task Force Sword. Task Force Sword, made up of over 1,800 Soldiers representing all 3 components of the Army, along with Engineers from Slovakia, Poland, and Korea, was responsible for reconstruction of the country's infrastructure and the assured mobility of Coalition Forces.

After redeployment, the 18th Engineer Brigade transformed into a functional engineer brigade and began train-up for the next deployment in support of the Global War on Terrorism. On 30 April 2008, the Brigade deployed to Tikrit, Iraq in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom 08-10. Over the 15 month deployment the Brigade planned, coordinated and tracked force protection construction, base expansion and closure, and quality of life improvements throughout Multi-National Division - North. While deployed to Tikrit, in May 2008, the Brigade's rear detachment relocated to Tompkins Barracks, Schwetzingen Germany.

In August of 2008, the Brigade relocated to Kirkuk to conduct Key Leader Engagements, and additionally was the senior Army command on the base. The Brigade took on the duties of the Joint Visitors Bureau, Mayor Cell, medical Support, Law of War, and topographic support. In January 2009, the Brigade received a change of mission and in February 2009 moved to Mosul to take on the mission of the Mosul Reconstruction Operations Center. During this time, the 18th Engineer Brigade conducted over 100 key leader engagements, completed over 150 technical inspections and site visits, and tracked over 200 construction projects estimated at $241 million. In July 2009, the 18th Engineer Brigade redeployed to Germany.

As part of continuing restructuring of US forces in Europe, it was announced on 1 March 2013 that the 54th Engineer Battalion and Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 18th Engineer Brigade would be inactivated during 2014.




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