Military


4th Battalion, 42nd Field Artillery Regiment
"Straight Arrows"

The mission of the 4th Battalion, 42nd Field Artillery is to deploy to an area of operations anywhere in the world, synchronize and provide fires in support of sustained, decisive full spectrum operations to achieve assigned objectives. As part of the modular transformation, assets that had previously been held at division level, but habitually assigned the the division's brigades during operations were made organic to the reorganized and redesignated brigade combat teams. As part of the transformation of the 4th Infantry Division, the 4th Battalion, 42nd Field Artillery was inactivated and reactivated as the organic field artillery battalion for the 1st Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division.

Prior to the modular transformation, 4-42nd Field Artillery had been assigned to the 4th Infantry Division and operated as a direct-support field artillery battalion as part of the Division Artillery (DIVARTY). It was equipped with the M109A6 Paladin howitzer, M992A2 Field Artillery Ammunition Supply Vehicle (FAASV), and Advanced Field Artillery Tactical Data System (AFATDS). It had converted to an organization of 3 batteries of 6 howitzers apiece as part of the Force XXI restructing. As a 675-man battalion, the unit had experimented with numerous initiatives. The Battalion had one of the first field artillery fire support warrant officers, who served as the targeting officer in the brigade fire support element.

The 4th Battalion, 42nd Field Artillery Regiment, was originally constituted on 5 July, 1918, in the National Army as Battery D, 42nd Field Artillery, an element of the 14th Division. It was organized on 10 August, 1918 at Camp Custer, Michigan. Serving in one campaign of the First World War, Alsace 1918, the unit returned to Camp Custer, Michigan where it was demobilized on 7 February, 1919.

The unit was reconstituted on 1 October 1933, in the Regular Army as Battery D, 42nd Field Artillery. It was absorbed on 1 October 1940, by Battery A, 42nd Field Artillery Battalion. Battery A, 42nd Field Artillery was redesignated on 1 October, 1940, as Battery A, 42nd Field Artillery Battalion, and activated at Fort Benning, Georgia, as an element of the 4th Division (later redesignated as the 4th Infantry Division). Battery A, 42nd Field Artillery Battalion participated in 5 campaigns in the Second World War: Normandy (with arrowhead indicating participation in the initial assault), Northern France, Rhineland, Ardennes-Alsace, and Central Europe. After the war, Battery A, 42nd Field Artillery Battalion was inactivated on 16 February, 1946, at Camp Butner, North Carolina.

Battery A, 42nd Field Artillery Battalion reactivated on 15 July, 1947, at Fort Ord, California, before being consolidated on 28 June 1950, with Battery A, 42nd Coast Artillery Battalion (which had been first organized in 1907). The consolidated unit designated as Battery A, 42d Field Artillery Battalion). Former Battery D, 42nd Field Artillery, was reconstituted on 1 April, 1957, in the Regular Army and redesignated as Headquarters and Headquarters Battery, 4th Battalion, 42nd Artillery.

It was redesignated on 23 April, 1959, as Headquarters and Headquarters Battery, 4th Howitzer Battalion, 42nd Artillery, and assigned to the 4th Infantry Division with its organic elements concurrently constituted. The Battalion activated on 6 May 1959 at Fort Lewis, Washington. It was redesignated on 1 October 1963, as the 4th Battalion, 42nd Artillery. The Battalion served as part of the 4th Infantry Division through 11 campaigns in Vietnam: Counteroffensive Phase II, Counteroffensive Phase III, Tet Counteroffensive, Counteroffensive Phase IV, Counteroffensive Phase V, Counteroffensive Phase VI, Tet 69/Counteroffensive, Summer-Fall 1969, Winter-Spring 1970, Sanctuary Counteroffensive, and Counteroffensive Phase VII. After the conflict in Vietnam, the unit returned and was inactivated on 15 December, 1970, at Fort Carson, Colorado.

While inactive, the unit was redesignated on 1 September 1971 as the 4th Battalion, 42nd Field Artillery. It remained inactive unitl 16 January 1996, when it returned to active service at Fort Hood, Texas. The unit was subsequently assigned to the 4th Infantry Division, becoming a direct support field artillery battalion in the Division Artillery (DIVARTY).

In March 2003, this unit deployed to Iraq to take part in the intial stages of Operation Iraqi Freedom and participated in Operation Red Dawn, a mission consiting of 600 1st Brigade, 4th Infantry Division troops, along with special operations forces, responsible for locating and capturing Saddam Hussein, the former Iraqi president.

In December 2004, as part of the transformation of the 4th Infantry Division to the US Army's modular force structure, 4th Battalion, 42nd Field Artllery Regiment was inactivated and relieved from assignment to the 4th Infantry Division. It was rorganized and redesignated as 4th Battalion, 42nd Field Artillery Regiment and reactivated assigned to the reorganized and redesignated 1st Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division. As part of the modular transformation, assets previously held at division level, but habitually attached to a division's brigades during operations were made organic to the modular brigade combat teams. 4-42nd Field Artillery became the organic field artillery battalion for the 1st Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division.

As of January 2006, the 4th Battalion, 42nd Field Artillery Regiment was operating in Camp Taji, an Army base approximately 10 miles northwest of Baghdad, fulfilling their second rotation in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom. They were expected to be there until December 2006.

Following its return from Iraq in late 2006, 4-42nd Field Artillery moved from Fort Hood, Texas to Fort Carson, Colorado along with the rest of the 1st Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division. This was as part of larger realignment of US Army units.




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