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516th Signal Brigade
"Voice of the Pacific"

Headquartered on Palm Circle, Fort Shafter, Hawaii, the 516th Signal Brigade is a forward based major subordinate operations and maintenance command of the 311th Signal Command. The Brigade supports the United States Army Pacific (USARPAC). The Brigade is also subordinate to US Army Network Command/9th Signal Command. Previously, the unit was assigned directly to United States Army Signal Command (USASC), with the same mission.

The history and lineage of the 516th Signal Brigade was intertwined with that of the US Army Signal Corps in the Pacific, dating back to the end of World War II and before. The 516th Signal Brigade was first constituted on 10 October 1944 in the Army of the United States as Headquarters and Headquarters Detachment, 3367th Signal Service Battalion and activated on 25 November 1944 in New Guinea. During the Second World War it participated in 4 campaigns: New Guinea, Leyte, Luzon, and Southern Philippines. The Battalion was inactivated on 27 February 1947 in the Philippine Islands.

The Battalion was redesignated on 19 August 1947 as the 516th Signal Service Battalion with its organic elements concurrently constituted. It was activated on 12 September 1947 on Guam. It was inactivated on 27 January 1950 on Guam with its organic elements concurrently disbanded. The unit was redesignated on 14 January 1954 as Headquarters and Headquarters Detachment, 516th Signal Group, and allotted to the Regular Army and activated on 10 February 1954 in Germany. The Group was inactivated on 13 November 1967 in Germany.

Back in the Pacific area, United States Army Strategic Communications Command-Pacific (STRATCOM-PAC) was activated on 1 September 1964 at Schofield Barracks, Hawaii. STRATCOM-PAC, had communications-electronics responsibilities during the 1960's and 1970's for the United States Army in Vietnam, Korea, Japan, Okinawa, the Philippines, Taiwan, and Thailand, as well as Hawaii, a geographical area spanning one third of the earth's surface. During this period, more than 27,000 soldiers and civilians were assigned to the command, with approximately 21,000 of them assigned to STRATCOM-PAC's 1st Signal Brigade in Vietnam.

STRATCOM went through a number of name changes, with the Pacific element reflecting them in each instance. On 1 October 1989, the pacific component was reflagged as the 1106th Signal Brigade. The Brigade eventually had 4 signal battalions in Alaska, Hawaii, Japan and Okinawa. Between 1990 and 1991, 17 soldiers and 2 officers from the 1106th Signal Brigade were deployed to Saudi Arabia to support Operations Desert Shield and Desert Storm.

On 15 October 1992, the 1106th Signal Brigade was inactivated. The 516th Signal Group was redesignated on 16 October 1992 as Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 516th Signal Brigade, and activated at Fort Shafter, Hawaii. The personnel of the 1106th Signal Brigade were reflagged as the 516th Signal Brigade and the subordinate battalions were reassigned to the new unit. After STRATCOM-PAC's activation in 1964, the Commander was dual-hatted as the Chief Information Officer of the supported Army Major Command. The Commander of the 516th Signal Brigade was dual-hatted as the Deputy Chief of Staff for Information Management (DCSIM), United States Army Pacific (USARPAC).

On 8 February 1993, the 516th/DCSIM assumed the mission for USARPAC's Worldwide Military and Command and Control System (WWMCCS) facility, which subsequently transitioned to the Global Command and Control System (GCCS) and became the consolidated host for the US Pacific Command (USPACOM). Between 1993 and 1994, several 516th Signal Brigade soldiers deployed to Somalia and Kuwait, and after 1995, soldiers also deployed to Haiti to support United Nations humanitarian efforts there. Beginning in 1996, Brigade soldiers deployed to Honduras, to Europe in support of operations in Bosnia-Herzegovina, and in 1999 and 2000, Brigade/DCSIM soldiers deployed to East Timor, Indonesia in support of the UN's Operation Stabilise.

In 1996, the 311th Signal Command (United States Army Reserve) also established a 5-person Forward Cell in support of USARPAC, succeeding the cell established there in 1991 by the former 261st Signal Command (Delaware Army National Guard). The cell was attached to the 516th Signal Brigade and was the first organization of its kind in the Reserve Component to be attached to an Active Component command. The cell's mission was to provide training opportunities, exercise participation, planning, technical guidance and information exchange between members of the 311th Signal Command, its CAPSTONE downtrace units, and USARPAC.

By that point, the Brigade had 4 subordinate commands to help accomplish its missions throughout the Pacific: the forward based 30th Signal Battalion in Hawaii, the 59th Signal Battalion in Alaska, the forward stationed 58th Signal Battalion in Okinawa, Japan; and 78th Signal Battalion in Honshu, Japan. In addition, an element of the 311th Signal Command (United States Army Reserve) was attached to the Brigade, providing a direct link between USARPAC and the Theater Signal Command headquarters at Fort George G. Meade, Maryland.

Functional support was provided by the Brigade in each of the 5 Information Mission Area (IMA) disciplines of communications, automation, visual information, records management, and printing and publications. In addition, the 516th Signal Brigade headquarters provided information systems engineering and integration, software development and maintenance, installation, quality assurance, and testing for various C4 programs and projects throughout USARPAC.

As part of its IMA support in the Pacific, elements of the 516th Signal Brigade operated and maintained the Army's portion of the Defense Communications System, base telephone switches, telecommunications centers, Joint Chiefs of Staff-controlled tactical satellite assets, data processing centers, communications security (COMSEC) assets, high frequency Military Affiliate Radio System (MARS) stations, Information Centers, forms and publications warehouses, reproduction facilities, electronic mail networks with Defense Data Network access, and other strategic/theater telecommunications assets. Among the Brigade/DCSIM missions were operating a Theater Network Management Center, providing a central point for managing and controlling information systems supporting USARPAC, as well as support for Army data networks for Eighth United States Army, Korea. It also had operational control of the USARPAC Global Command and Control System (GCCS) at Fort Shafter, Hawaii, to support command and control and communications (C3) requirements for Joint and Service components in the Pacific theater. The USARPAC DCSIM directly supported the USCINCPAC J6 with C4 capability and contingency assets as USARPAC was the Army Component to the US Commander-in-Chief, Pacific (USCINCPAC) at the time.

The 307th Integrated Theater Signal Battalion was reassigned from the 1st Signal Brigade to the 516th Signal Brigade and relocated to Schofield Barracks, Hawaii on 13 November 2006.

On 17 October 2012, it was reported that 58th Signal Battalion had been inactivated at Fort Buckner, Okinawa as part of a consolidation of signal assets in Japan.




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Page last modified: 17-10-2012 15:00:58 ZULU