18th Engineer Brigade

The history of the 18th Engineer Brigade begins on 29 July 1921, when its predecessor, the 347th Engineers (General Service), was constituted as an organized reserve unit. The unit was ordered into active military service on 6 May 1942 at Camp Claiborne, Louisiana.

On 1 August 1942, the unit was reorganized and redesignated as the 347th Engineer General Services Regiment. The Regiment deployed to England in February 1944. It entered combat in France on 29 June 1944 and participated in the Normandy, Northern France, Rheinland and Central Europe campaigns of World War II , earning its first Meritorious Unit Commendation. After V-E Day, the Regiment remained on occupation duty in Germany until it was inactivated on 1 June 1946.

On 15 June 1947, the Regiment was reactivated in the organized reserves headquartered in Salt Lake, Utah, and remained there until it was again inactivated on 16 March 1949.

On 25 October 1954, the 347th Engineer General Services Regiment was redesignated the 18th Engineer Brigade and activated as a Regular Army unit at Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri, where it remained until inactivation on 26 March 1963.

The 18th Engineer Brigade was reactivated on 16 July 1965 at Fort Bragg, North Carolina and prepared for deployment to Vietnam. From September 1965 until December 1966, the Brigade oversaw all U. S. Army Theater engineer activities in Vietnam. In December, 1966, the U. S. Army Engineer Command, Vietnam (Prov) was created and the 18th Engineer Brigade became responsible for engineer support in the I and II Corps Tactical Zones. The Brigade Headquarters was located at Dang Ba Thin. On 20 September 1971, the Brigade was inactivated. Over the six years the Brigade served in Vietnam, it participated in 14 of 17 campaigns, earning four more Meritorious Unit Citations.

On 21 October 1977, The 18th Engineer Brigade was reactivated at Karlsruhe, Germany. For the next 15 years, the Brigade served as the principal construction brigade for the United States Army, Europe and 7th Army. During this period, the Brigade performed numerous construction, rehabilitation and renovation missions in military communities and training areas throughout USAREUR. Most noteworthy were the massive range upgrade of the Grafenwohr Major Training Area in the early 80's and the construction of the Range 23 complex at the Wildflecken Major Training Area in 1989 and 1990. Additionally, the Brigade was responsible for providing topographic support to the European Theater.

In 1990 and 1991, during Operations Desert Shield and Desert Storm, the 18th Engineer Brigade provided rail and sea deployment support to the VII Corps and, in addition, deployed a Combat Heavy Battalion and Topographic Company to support VII Corps operations in Southwest Asia. In April 1991, the Brigade Headquarters, along with a subordinate Combat Heavy Battalion, deployed to Zakho, Iraq in support of Operation Provide Comfort. While there, the Brigade coordinated all engineer efforts of a Joint and Combined engineer force providing construction and relief support to the Kurdish refugees. The 18th Engineer Brigade was awarded the Joint Meritorious Unit Award for its action during Operation Provide Comfort. As part of the reduction of forces in Europe, the Brigade was inactivated on 15 October 1992.

On 18 Oct 2002, the Vice Chief of Staff of the Army approved the USAREUR and 7th Army Concept Plan to activate the Theater Army Engineer Brigade (TAEB), culminating a process began in 2000. Today, the 18th EN BDE (TA) marks the return to service of the only active duty TAEB.

18th Engineer Brigade

18th Engineer Brigade The 18th Engineer Brigade was formed July 29, 1921, as the 347th Engineers (General Service) in the Organized Reserves. It was ordered into active military service May 6, 1942, at Camp Claiborne, La., and redesignated the 347th Engineer General Service Regiment. For its service in Normandy, northern France, the Rhineland and Central Europe during World War II, the unit received the Meritorious Unit Commendation.

After the war, it was deactivated in Germany, July 16, 1965, it was activated at Fort Bragg, N.C., and prepared for deployment to Vietnam. An advanced party of the brigade arrived in the Republic of Vietnam on Sept. 3, 1965, and became operational two weeks later. Many of the Brigade's projects stand out as exceptional engineering feats.

Among them was the construction of the critical Hai Van Pass, a job attempted by many but accomplished by the 18th Brigade, and a storage area in Cam Ranh Bay, two years in construction and enclosing 191,700 square feet. The brigade has also been actively engaged in road building and land clearing, as well as numerous civic action projects. The accomplishments of the 18th Engineer Brigade have not only contributed significantly to the success of combat forces in Military Regions 1 and 2 but have provided valuable assets to the future development and growth of South Vietnam.

18th Engineer Brigade

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