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5th Battalion, 101st Aviation Regiment
"Eagle Assault"

The mission of the 5-101st Aviation Regiment is to deploy worldwide to plan, synchronize and execute air assault and aerial sustainment operations as an integrated element of an air assault combined arms team.

The 5th Battalion, 101st Aviation Regiment was organized on 25 July 1968 at Fort Carson, Colorado, as the 158th Aviation Battalion. In February 1969, the unit deployed to the Republic of Vietnam, becoming part of the 101st Airborne Division (Airmobile). On 19 December 1971, the battalion departed Vietnam, having received three Presidential Unit Citations and returned to Fort Campbell, Kentucky, true Screaming Eagles.

The battalion was at the forefront of aviation doctrine development and training during the 1970's, developing tactics and doctrine that would turn the 101st Airborne into the Air Assault Division. Firsts for the 5-101st include: the validation of the Air Assault concept during REFORGER '76 and the first unit in the Army to receive the UH-60 Blackhawk Helicopter. The 158th Aviation Battalion was the Army test bed for special aviation operations. In 1980, the battalion formed Task Force 158th, which pioneered night vision goggle flight, undergoing intensive training that gave it 24 hour Air Assault capability. Task Force 158th became Task Force 160th and eventually, the 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment. In 1987, the 158th Aviation Battalion was redesignated as the 5th Battalion, 101st Aviation Regiment.

The battalion performed with distinction during five rotations to the Joint Readiness Training Center both in Fort Chaffee, Arkansas, and Fort Polk, Louisana. During Operation Desert Shield and Desert Storm, the 5-101st served with distinction. The battalion planned and led the world's largest Air Assault, which spearheaded the 101st Airborne Division's G-Day attack into Iraq. In April 1993, 5-101st Aviation formed Team Phoenix, which served as the nucleus for the aviation task force during the most difficult months of Operation Continue/Restore Hope in Somalia.

The 5-101st Aviation deployed with other elements of the 1st Brigade, 327th Infantry, 101st Airborne Division as part of Operation Iraqi Freedom in 2003. It returned in 2004 as part of the transitioning of the entire Division to the US Army's new modular structure.

In 2004 with the move toward the modular force, 5-101st Avaition was transfered from 1st Brigade, 327th Infantry, 101st Airborne Division (subsequently 1st Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division) to the 101st Aviation Brigade.

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Page last modified: 05-07-2011 01:29:14 ZULU