Special Troops Battalion
15th Sustainment Brigade
Historical Missions
"Support The Action"

The 15th Special Troops Battalion identifies its lineage and honors from two organizations. The Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 15th Sustainment Brigade and the Headquarters and Headquarters Company, DISCOM, 1st Cavalry Division.

The history of "HHC", DISCOM can be traced back to the pre-world war ii years, most units of the 1st cavalry division not assigned to the major subordinate maneuver commands were under control of the headquarters, division special troops. These included service and supports elements of the division.

In pre-World War II years, most units of the 1st Cavalry Division not assigned to the major subordinate maneuver commands were under control of the Headquarters, Division Special Troops. These included service and supports elements of the Division. After World War II, however, the Special Troops Headquarters was reorganized under the Pentomic concept and the immediate forerunner of the DISCOM, Headquarters, Division Trains, was activated 01 November 1957 in Korea. Although a new organization, Division Trains employed concepts similar to those of a US armored division trains that were originated in World War I.

Vietnam War 1965 - 1972

On 01 September 1963, Headquarters, Division Trains was reorganized under the ROAD (Reorganization of the Army Divisions) concept and redesignated as Headquarters, Headquarters Company and Band, 1st Cavalry Division, 1st Cavalry Division Support Command. Accompanying the Division to Vietnam in August 1965, the Support Command participated in all major campaigns and distinguished itself in battle.

Redhat Stands Ready To Hookup
Accompanying the Division to Vietnam in August 1965, the HHC, DISCOM participated in all major campaigns and distinguished itself in battle. It received the Presidential Unit Citation for action in Pleiku province and the Valorous Unit Award for action in the "fish hook" area of Cambodia. In addition, support command received three meritorious unit commendations and four republic of Vietnam Cross of Gallantry awards.

In parallel with the deployments of the 1st Cavalry Division, on 04 May 1966, the Special Troops Battalion of the 15th Sustainment Brigade was originally constituted in the Regular Army as a Headquarters and Headquarters Company and was first activated on 01 July 1966.

Following a tour providing support to units in Vietnam, on 20 October 1967, the Special Troops Battalion along with the Brigade was inactivated. However on 21 September 1968, it was reactivated on at Fort Lewis, Washington and returned to Vietnam receiving campaign credits for its support for Counteroffensive Operations (Phase II and III).

On 15 May 1971, the DISCOM was reorganized and designated as Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 1st Cavalry Division Support Command. Most major subordinate units of the DISCOM had returned from Vietnam in 1971 and were stationed at Fort Hood. By the end of June 1971, the DISCOM was a large command comprised of "HHC", Support Command, 15th Adjutant General Company/Band, 15th Medical Battalion, 15th Supply and Transport Battalion, 27th Maintenance Battalion, 8th Engineer Battalion, 315th Composite Support Battalion, 15th Finance Company (the latter two units had been transferred from the 1st Armored Division), and the 15th Data Processing Unit.

Persian Gulf War, Southwest Asia 1990 - 1991

On 28 September 1990, HHC, Division Support Command deployed to southwest Asia in support of operation desert shield and desert storm providing logistics throughout the combat area of operations, thus supporting a quick liberation of Kuwait.

From March 2004 thru March 2005 "HHC", DISCOM again deployed to Southwest Asia in support of operation Iraqi Freedom II operating from Camp Cook forward operating base, providing command and control for all logistics elements supporting the Multi-National Division- Baghdad. For their actions during combat logistics operations the unit received their fourth meritorious unit citation.

Modular Forces 2005

On 06 July 2005, the Headquarters and Headquarters Company of the Division Support Command (DISCOM) of the 1st Cavalry Division was inactivated and redesignated as the 15th Special Troops Battalion of the 15th Sustainment Brigade.

On 15 July 2005, the Support Command, 1st Cavalry Division, was inactivated as part of the US Army's transformation towards a modular force. The function of centralized support was assumed by activation of the 15th Sustainment Brigade along with its organic elements that were concurrently constituted and activated.

Iraqi Freedom-iV 2006 - 2008

The 15th Sustainment Brigade was the first element of the 1st Cavalry Division to return to Iraq and assumed control for logistics in the Baghdad area of operations. On 29 July 2006 the 15th Special Troops Battalion deployed to Camp Taji, Iraq in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom 06-08. Their duties included supporting the Sustainment Brigade headquarters logistics command and control mission, while assuming the additional missions of base security and the training of the 6th Iraqi Motorized Transportation Regiment, the al-Taji regional support unit, and the al-Taji national depot.

While deployed, the "HHC", 15th Special Troop Battalion provided administrative and life support for over 230 Soldiers assigned to the 15th Sustainment Brigade headquarters element. The "HHC" managed all life support for Soldiers living in more than 10 separate locations and supervised the operation of the dining facility, which supported over 10,000 Soldiers a day. The "HHC" carried out a training management program to ensure that Soldiers maintained proficiency in warrior skills, military occupational specialty skills, cultural awareness, and sensitivity training.

Alpha Company provided maintenance and medical support to the brigade and the 15th STB. With over 100 Soldiers, it was a multifunctional support company that included an organizational maintenance platoon, a component repair platoon, and a medical platoon.

The maintenance platoon operated a consolidated motorpool and was responsible for the organizational maintenance of over 100 pieces of rolling stock within the 15th STB and its attached subordinate units. Alpha Company provided direct support maintenance to supported and attached units that lacked maintenance capability. These units included the 786th Quartermaster Battalion, several military transition teams supporting Iraqi Security Forces (ISF) at Camp Taji, and a movement control team from the 49th Movement Control Battalion. The company also operated the only functional sustainment-level component repair platoon within the theater.

The component repair platoon consisted of a fuel and equipment repair section and an intermediate family of test equipment section. These sections provided needed support to the numerous supply support activities at Camp Taji with starter and generator repair and circuit card diagnosis for M109 Paladin howitzers.

The medical platoon contributed to the health and welfare of Soldiers assigned to the 15th Sustainment Brigade and to all of Camp Taji and MND–B. Doctrinally, the platoon consists of treatment and evacuation squads that operate a battalion aid station that can support 400 personnel. While deployed, however, the role of the medical platoon greatly expanded to operate a troop medical clinic, supporting over 2,500 personnel at Camp Taji with only one physician and one physician’s assistant. Alpha Company performed this role due to the lack of an area medical support company at Camp Taji.

Bravo Company provided signal support to the 15th Sustainment Brigade headquarters and subordinate units. With only 60 Soldiers, the company provided secure and non-secure communications for the brigade and powered the numerous automated combat service support systems that are vital to sustaining the warfighter.

Bravo Company’s capabilities included a range extension platoon consisting of two command post node teams and a retransmission team. These teams attached to subordinate units of the 15th Sustainment Brigade that were geographically dispersed over large distances and gave them the ability to communicate with the brigade headquarters. Bravo Company supported the 393rd and 68th CSSBs, which were located over 25 miles from Camp Taji. The network extension platoon also operated several systems, including the Joint Network Node (JNN), Ku-band satellite mobile unit, line of sight (LOS) radio, and Enhanced Position Locating and Reporting System (EPLRS).

These systems provided full voice, video, and data services and satellite transmission to the brigade to enable communication with subordinate and higher headquarters. These systems were employed at Camp Taji, adjacent to the 15th Sustainment Brigade command information center.

Bravo Company also included a signal maintenance section, a communications and electronics team, and a network operations (NETOPs) section. Both the signal maintenance section and the communications and electronics team worked closely with the organizational maintenance platoon in Alpha Company and provided maintenance support to the communications systems of the Brigade, such as JNN and LOS. The NETOPs section worked closely with the brigade S–6 to monitor the brigade’s network, ensure compliance, and troubleshoot problems when they arose.

In addition to providing support to the brigade headquarters, the 15th STB performed two additional missions during the deployment to Iraq: base defense at Camp Taji and ISF assistance. After deploying to Camp Taji, the 15th STB was tasked to assume command and control of the largest portion of the base defense of Camp Taji. Executing this mission required over 220 Soldiers daily and covered the most dangerous section of Camp Taji’s perimeter, which included 18 guard towers and 2 entry control points bordering Main Supply Route Tampa. To accomplish this mission, the 15th STB was assigned two additional companies: the 410th Quartermaster Company (Kentucky Army National Guard) and the 1157th Transportation Company (Wisconsin Army National Guard). These two companies increased the total strength of the 15th STB to over 700 Soldiers.

On October 2007, the Brigade returned home to Fort Hood and began reorganizing for future actions. On 15 February, 2008 the Brigade changed its higher command for the first time in its history. It was relieved from assignment to the 1st Cavalry Division and assigned to the 13th Sustainment Command (Expeditionary). The Brigade, marking the first time that it served independently from the 1st Cavalry Division, provided logistics support to 40,000 Soldiers at Fort Hood, while simultaneously training for another deployment.

Iraqi Freedom-VI 2008 - 2010

In September 2009, the Brigade once again deployed in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom and on 05 October, 2009 it assumed the sustainment mission for Multi-National Division - North at Contingency Operating Location Q-West, Iraq. During the deployment, the Brigade provided sustainment support for United States Divisions - "North" and "Center", swelling its command and control nearly 7,000 Soldiers. In addition, the Brigade managed human resources and finance operations for the entire country of Iraq.

Soldiers Earn Their Combat Patchs

On 15 October 2009, Soldiers of the 15th Special Troops Battalion, 15th Sustainment Brigade received their shoulder sleeve insignia - former wartime service, better known as the combat patch, in a ceremony at the Morale Welfare and Recreation building, Contingency Operating Base, Q-West, Iraq.

The combat patch, which may be permanently worn on the right sleeve of most common Army uniforms, shows that the Soldier wearing it deployed to a combat zone with a specific unit.

When the Brigade departed theie original tour of duty was scheduled for a 12 months, but came home early in May and June of 2010. Since their return from Iraq, the Brigade had undertaken a number of duties around Fort Hood. The activities include testing new systems for use during deployments, remodeling infrastructure around the fort, and training on personal safety.

Color Casing Ceremony at Cooper Field.
On 30 November, a chapter in the history of the Special Troops Battal;ion and the 15th Sustainment Brigade closed at Fort Hood but another chapter is just beginning. The 15th Sustainment Brigade. and the 15th Special Troops Battalion held a change of command and color casing ceremony on Cooper Field to mark the final step as the base move of the operations to Fort Bliss. Soldiers with the 15th Sustainment Brigade have been preparing for the move since returning to Fort Hood this summer.

On 08 December 2010, the 15th Sustainment Brigade "WAgonmasters" officially uncased their colors in a ceremony at Noel Field to join "Team Bliss" opening a new chapter in its history.

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Copyright © 1996, Cavalry Outpost Publications ® and Trooper Wm. H. Boudreau, "F" Troop, 8th Cavalry Regiment (1946 - 1947). All rights to this body of work are reserved and are not in the public domain, or as noted in the bibliography. Reproduction, or transfer by electronic means, of the History of the 1st Cavalry Division, the subordinate units or any internal element, is not permitted without prior authorization. Readers are encouraged to link to any of the pages of this Web site, provided that proper acknowledgment attributing to the source of the data is made. The information or content of the material contained herein is subject to change without notice.

Revised 14 Dec '12 SpellChecked