8th Battalion (Aviation Intermediate Maintenance),
101st Aviation Regiment
In 2004 as part of the US Army's shift to the modular system, the 8th Battalion, 101st Aviation Regiment was reflagged as the 96th Aviation Support Battalion, 101st Aviation Brigade.
The mission of the 8th Battalion, 101st Aviation Regiment, was to deploy support assets worldwide, and provide aviation intermediate maintenance, backup aviation unit maintenance, and aircraft repair parts supply support to the aircraft of the 101st Airborne Division.
The 8-101st Aviation Intermediate Maintenance (AVIM) Battalion was organic to the 101st Airborne DISCOM. It provided aviation intermediate maintenance and backup Aviation Unit Maintenance (AVUM) to Divisional and attached units' aircraft, systems and subsystems, including aircraft armament, avionics and aircraft survivability equipment. Additionally it sustained: Class IX (Air) repair part supply support, operational readiness floats of helicopters and selected aircraft peculiar items, technical information and quality assurance/assistance, repairable management (RM) service for selected items, recovery and evacuation aircraft, oversight of ESRA operations.
The history of the 8th Battalion, 101st Aviation Regiment dates back to 25 August 1943 at Camp Swift, TX. The unit was initially activated as 5th Quartermaster Troop Transport Battalion.
The Battalion joined the 101st Airborne Division on 1 July 68 when it was redesigned as Headquarters & Headquarters Company, 5th Transportation Battalion and activated in Vietnam. The Battalion participated in numerous conflicts and operations from its base camp in Phu Bai. Later, the unit was honored with the Meritorious Unit Commendation, First Oak Leaf Cluster, for its service and support of those combat operations. The Battalion was relieved from its assignment in Vietnam and returned to Fort Campbell on 19 January 1972. The Battalion was inactivated and redesignated on 19 September 1986 as the 222nd Aviation Maintenance and Supply Battalion.
On 16 October 1987, the Battalion was inactivated and activated as the 8th Battalion 101st Aviation Regiment, assigned to the 101st Airborne Division, Fort Campbell, Kentucky. Advance elements of the 8th Battalion, 101st Aviation Regiment began deploying from Fort Campbell on 18 August 1990 to quickly establish forward operations in Saudi Arabia in support of Operation Desert Shield. The Battalion rapidly became fully operational providing Intermediate Aviation support. The Battalion continued to support operations in TAA Campbell with 607 personnel. The Battalion's long awaited return to Fort Campbell became reality on 11 April 1991.
The 8th Battalion soldiers continued to support the enormous task of redeployment from operations conducted in Southwest Asia. By September 1991, the Division was readied as the Army's premier rapid deployment Division, largely in part thanks to the efforts of the soldiers assigned the "Troubleshooter" Battalion.
Following redeployment from Southwest Asia the battalion went on to support every major deployment and exercise the 101st Airborne Division had aircraft take part in. From Somalia to Honduras, to taking part in SEDREs and every Combat Training Center rotation the Division has attended. At the time the elements of 8th Battalion, 101st Aviation Regiment made up the largest Aviation Battalion in the U.S. Army.
8-101st Aviation deployed with the 101st Aviation Brigade as part of the 101st Airborne's contributions to Operation Enduring Freedom - Afghanistan in 2001 and then to Iraq as part of Iraqi Freedom in 2003. In 2004 the unit returned to Fort Campbell and was stood down, its personnel being reflagged the 96th Aviation Support Battalion, 101st Aviation Brigade.
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