Harman Patil

326th Medical Battalion (United States)

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Active  1942 – ?; 1964 – ?
Branch  United States Army
Size  Battalion
Country  United States
Type  Medical
326th Medical Battalion (United States)
Part of  101st Airborne Division

The 326th Medical Battalion is a divisional support medical unit of the United States Army. It supports the 101st Airborne Division, located at Fort Campbell, Kentucky.

Contents

The 326th Airborne Medical Company can trace its history back to the First World War. The 326th Medical Company was initially constituted on 23 July 1918 as the 326th Sanitary Train. It formed part of the 101st Division. After being deactivated on 11 December 1918 following a change in structure of the U.S. Army, it was reconstituted 24 June 1924 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin as the 326th Medical Regiment, and once again assigned to the 101st Division.

On 30 January 1942, the Regiment was once again redesignated as the 326th Medical Battalion of the 101st Division. The Army, in preparation for the new war in Europe, withdrew the Battalion from the organized reserves and assigned it to the Army of the United States on 15 August 1942, once more reorganizing the unit now officially designated as the 326th Airborne Medical Company. Major William E. Barfield was assigned as the Commanding Officer of the Company.

In 1964, just before the division deployed elements to Vietnam, the 326th Medical Company was expanded into the 326th Medical Battalion.

Vietnam

Stanton's Vietnam Order of Battle, 213, says Co D (Airborne) arrived in Vietnam with the 1st Brigade (separate) at Phan Rang in July 1965. In 1966 the authorized strength of the company was 76. The main body of the 326th Medical Battalion arrived in Vietnam on 22 July 1967, and departed on 23 December 1971. The battalion's authorized strength was 380.

Aeromedical evacuation in Desert Shield/Desert Storm

Company D, an Aero Medical Evacuation (Medevac) Unit active until 2015, was often referred to by its callsign, "Eagle Dustoff". It traced its history from the 50th Medical Company, and companies of the 101st and 159th Aviation Regiments.

During the 1990 Gulf War (Desert Shield/Desert Storm), Eagle Dustoff (D Co, 326 Med Bn) was deployed to the Saudi Arabian Theatre of operations on Aug 22 1990 and was the first US Army Medevac unit in country. When Eagle Dustoff landed in Dhahran Saudi Arabia and unloaded the 3 UH60A Medevac birds from the C5A Galaxy, Eagle Dustoff immediately began taking missions with the evacuation of an injured US Marine with a broken leg. Two days after assuming duty, Eagle Dustoff moved 40 miles Northwest of Dhahran to King Fahd International Airport where Medevac operations remained until Jan 18, 1991 when all 12 Medevac birds were moved 700 miles NW to TAA Campbell at the start of Operation Desert Storm.

During the time at TAA Campbell birds from Eagle Dustoff ventured into Iraq to support air operations connected to the Air War against Baghdad. On February 28, 1991 the remaining personnel from Eagle Dustoff convoyed with the 326 Med Bn and the rest of the 101st Airborne 115 miles into Iraq to FOB Cobra. Operations at FOB Cobra lasted until after the cease fire with Iraq and for a week after when the unit returned to TAA Campbell. Eagle Dustoff then completely returned to King Fahd International on Mar 28, 1991.

The last member of Eagle Dustoff to arrive back at Fort Campbell did so on April 24, 1991.

References

326th Medical Battalion (United States) Wikipedia


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