1st Reconnaissance Battalion
General James L. Jones' mission to revitalize Marine Corps reconnaissance took a big step forward on 05 July 2000 with the reactivation of 1st Reconnaissance Battalion, 1st Marine Division. The unit, which had been relocated, reassigned and redesignated more than 25 times since 1937, was deactivated in 1992, giving way to Recon Company, which became part of Headquarters Battalion. "When the colors were uncased, the unit instantly transformed from a company to a battalion structure. "Changing from a company to a battalion gave two things - a better capability for command and control to support the division's reconnaissance efforts, and a greater ability for centralized training.
According to one of the commandant's principal goals, it also restores a reconnaissance capability unmatched at 1st Marine Division since the deactivation eight years previously. This ceremony saw past members of recon participate in the restoration of colors and the placement of the battle streamers on the colors.
The brotherhood associated with recon is one that may be unmatched in the Marine Corps. Traditionally, the men go out in small units, sometimes as small as three or four Marines, so there is a real close bond that develops between these Marines. It is significant for prior Recon Marines to participate in the ceremony because of this bond. Recon Marines proved their valor in Korea, Guadalcanal, Vietnam and elsewhere.
In gearing up for reactivation, Recon Company was already approaching battalion size. About 50 more Marines were needed to fill billets. They were obtained gradually through normal channels. The battalion's debut exercise, a force on force training event, will be held at Camp Pendleton.
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