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16th Engineer Battalion

In 2007, as part of a continuing drawdown of US forces in Europe, the 1st Armored Division began both transformation to the US Army's modular force structure and redeployment of some of its brigades to the United States. 16th Engineer Battalion was inactivated as part of the modular transformation, with engineering missions being passed to the modular brigade special troops battalions.

The 16th Engineer Battalion's mission was to form and train the team and on order deploy to provide mobility, countermobility, survivability, and general engineering support to 1st Brigade, 1st Armored Division, or other designated maneuver forces. It would then, on order, redeploy, reintegrate, recover, and prepare for future operations.

The Distinctive Unit Insignia was originally approved for the 16th Armored Engineer Battalion on 25 April 1952. It was redesignated for the 16th Engineer Battalion on 12 September 1957. On 5 December 1984 the insignia was amended to correct the symbolism. On 21 October 1994 it was revised to change the description and the symbolism. The insignia consists of a shield blazoned: Per chevron reversed Argent and Gules, on a bar in base Sable fimbriated of the first a cat-a-mountain salient guardant of the third, armed, langued, collared and lined of the second, in sinister chief a mullet voided and fretted Vert. Attached below the shield a silver scroll inscribed "SEMPER ULTIMO" in red letters. Red and white are the colors used for the Corps of Engineers. The bar symbolizes a treadway bridge, the construction of which was a major combat mission of the organization. The cat-a-mountain, a European wildcat, indicated the stealth and swiftness required in combat engineer operations, and the soldiers of the battalion were known as "Catamounts." The black cat also connoted the darkness in which operations were conducted. The star from the flag of French Morocco represented service in that area during World War II. The inverted chevron symbolized the Battalion's spearheading of armored engineer activity in World War II.

The 16th Engineer Battalion was first constituted on 11 December 1935 in the Regular Army as the 16th Engineer Regiment. It was redesignated on 15 July 1940 as the 16th Engineer Battalion and was concurrently assigned to the 1st Armored Division and activated at Fort Knox, Kentucky.

The unit was redesignated on 1 January 1942 as the 16th Armored Engineer Battalion. Its D and E Companies were disbanded on 20 July 1944 in Italy while the remainder of the Battalion was inactivated between 10-13 April 1946 at Camp Kilmer, New Jersey.

The 16th Armored Engineer Battalion was reactivated on 7 March 1951 at Fort Hood, Texas. Company D had been reconstituted on 27 February 1951. The Battalion was redesignated on 15 February 1957 as the 16th Engineer Battalion. Soon thereafter it was inactivated, less Company A, on 23 December 1957 at Fort Polk, Louisiana.

It was reactivated, less Company A (active), on 3 February 1962 at Fort Hood, Texas.

It was relieved on 16 June 1991 from assignment to the 1st Armored Division and assigned to the 3rd Infantry Division. It was relieved on 16 November 1993 from assignment to the 3rd Infantry Division. The Battalion was reassigned on 16 February 1997 back to the 1st Armored Division.

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Page last modified: 05-07-2011 01:21:27 ZULU