Dragoon Base

Connecting the Troopers of Today with the Veterans of Yesterday.



For those who served at Christensen Barracks.

Location: Bindlach, Germany
Members: 329
Latest Activity: May 23

Discussion Forum

2nd Armored Cavalry 33 Replies

Started by PHILIP SHERIDAN GREAVES. Last reply by gary schmidt Apr 28.

%Kw Laser equipped Styker

Started by MARK PILLOW Mar 24.

Cold Cold 19 Replies

Started by Cosme Guzman-Torres. Last reply by Roger Digel-Barrett May 23, 2016.

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Comment by Joe Harten on January 28, 2009 at 1:39pm
What Pete is saying about dismounted patrol has a great deal of value. However, the key thing to remember is that you need a vehicle to dismount from in the first place.

Leg infantry or exclusive tank units operate with one hand tied.

An example of this came when LTC Brinkley made a bet with the colonel of the 509th Airborne. Well, the "elite" airborne heloed into our AO to teach us a lesson only to find out from the referees that their Chinooks had been blown out of the sky by ground fire. After that debacle, they decided to defend a town by digging into the open fields surrounding it. The image of a Rambo wannabe standing up and engaging a platoon of tanks with his M-60 machine gun still makes me smile. After that spanking the "airborne" climbed into trucks to get to their next position. It took so long to gather them up we basically had the day off.

Having learned their lesson that a battalion of infantry couldn't stand up to a company of tanks and one cav troop, they decided to pick on How Battery that night. Imagine their surprise when the cannon cockers detected them and opened a can of whup ass on them. HOW BATTERY!!!

That must have been a looong flight back to Italy. Elite is what elite does (thanks Mrs, Gump) not fancy head gear. The Cav in Europe really was the elite.
Comment by Pete Salerno on January 28, 2009 at 1:12pm
I think that Shannon and Joe have both hit the mark. The difference is dismounting. The patrol that Bob Pederson (Bob, I misspelled your name earlier; my apologies) wrote about didn't happen a lot after we went to J-series. And the tankers told us it would happen and they were right; once we got the brads, gunnery became the only thing anyone cared about. You get a numbers driven commander like Twinkie and you can pretty well forget about anything as unquantifiable as dismounted patrolling. I spent my last two years in the RA instructing 19D stuff at Ft. Knox and I can't say for sure if they taught it there.
I do remember one beautiful weekend, marks in hand ready to go into town and catch a train anywhere when A Trp lost a page to a CEOI. Locked down the entire post. Talk about pissed.
Comment by Shannon Alexander on January 26, 2009 at 8:23pm
Ha!! Losing nods is bad but who remembers the time C-troop (or was it D-Company) lost a sentive item at gates and had to do another border rotation? As recall we in B-troop were next so we got to stay another month on the rock. ( I cant recall if that sensitive item was CEOI or Weapon..... .45?) I know at some point the rumor was it just a cover sheet to the funny papers.

Your spot on Pete, concerning the J-series and H-Series. As time went on the Tankers and Scouts pretty much kept in thier seperate circles. The newer Tankers suffered in thier dismounted skills when we lost the Big Brother Little Brother mentality and Cohisiveness. I myself later became a "Multi-Facet" instructor for the Army National Guard at the Training & Training Technologies Battle Lab. FT DIX teaching 19K, 19D, 11B, 13B, 63H, 63B,,,,ect. and attribute it all to the 2nd ACR.

To this day I only fly Cav Sabers and call myself a CAV Tanker not Armor. I've worked with pure armor troops,,,,,There's a difference.
Comment by Joe Harten on January 25, 2009 at 10:58pm
No insult taken, I got exactly what you meant. I didn't mean to come across that way. If I did, I apologize.

I always thought that the fact that we climbed off our hogs made us better troops. It definitely showed when we went to PNOC and BNOC. Our land nav and small unit tactics were head and shoulders over the guys from armor battalions, and that was due to the scout influence.

I'll always remember watching one of the cav troops in action. We we on one of those regimental sized maneuvers (1982 maybe?) and D co was in a hide position on some high ground overwatching a valley. The troop was in a screen in front and they made contact first. I can still remember envying the way the 113s hauled ass, scooting back towards us. The OPFOR was in full chase when they hit the cav tanks and then the ITVs. As they slowed up a bit, we got the word to move. We hit them real hard, right in their side and drove all the way through to their arty and HQ. Those cannon cockers were PISSED when we ran over their commo wire! We.re popping Hoffman's and smoke all over their rear areas after leaving all sorts of vehicles with the yellow MILES lights rotating in our wake.

When we finally got the call to stop, we sat up on the turrets and gloated when they came streaming past, back to where they started. It was then when I realized that the Cav's combined arms tactics were very difficult for straight armor or infantry to deal with.
Comment by Pete Salerno on January 25, 2009 at 9:40pm
Boy, I'm just stepping all over my crank lately. Joe, that really didn't come out quite the way I meant it. It was not my intent to insult anyone, but my perception was just that both communities, scout and tanker, lost something when we split up. We lost the firepower and the confidence that comes with knowing that when you were hauling ass back towards the BP, Bob Peterson or Bernie Reynolds was there and had your back. The tankers (and I am only commenting about B Trp) seemed to lose some of the dash and flair. I never worked with D Co. so I wouldn't try to comment on what it was like in one of the tank companies. Make no mistake, I thought the tankers in my platoon were great soldiers and living and working with them was much preferable to the time when they went to their own platoons.
Bob, I don't know if that was my idea because we seemed to do that sort of thing a lot. I do remember that on one of those little adventures someone set off a hoffman device in the muzzle of someone elses M1 and there was hell to pay. Makes it all worth while watching someone trying to get that white artic facepaint out of their CARC.
Comment by Joe Harten on January 25, 2009 at 8:30pm
Funny you should say that about the tankers in the troops. In Delta we always thought (knew) we were more versatile because we had to do the scouts' missions from our 60A3's. Taking into account the smaller cadre in a tank company as compared to a cav troop, border tours were a bear and during gunnery at Graf we weren't allowed to add a loader if we were short. I qualified as a three man crew: driver, loader TC.
Comment by Robert Pederson on January 25, 2009 at 6:55pm
My arrival at the Rock was similar to other comments. After the 4 hour bus ride, we arrived about 2am. The driver says "welcome to the border" as we pull into the main gate. Looking out the windows all we see the perimeter fence lit up and dark buildings, as the Squadron was in the field the post was pretty much deserted, we were under the impression that our duty post was actually right on the border. Of course no one at Squadron or the troop told us any different till the next day. That night a couple of short-timers clearing post took us to Bayreuth and proceeded to corrupt our young souls...
I also had a PL who couldn't read a map. He got us so lost (10 clicks from a check point) that I assumed the patrol and got us back on track.
I also enjoyed "cross training" with the scouts. I recall an episode where during a weather related halt on maneuvers during Reforger in '85, I think, where we conducted a incursion against C troops AA one night. Nothing good can come out of a bunch of Cavalry Troopers with boredom, time, and explosive devices on hand. Long story short, we were able to infiltrate the C Trp TOC undetected (walked right through the middle)and proceeded to procure maps, overlays, and antennas from one of their Platoon leaders track. We covered our exit by blowing up some corn fields with IHD's (Improvised Hoffmann Devices) Then blew up the antennas with the same. Don't remember the outcome, but I believe a C Trp Lt. got an ass chewing.
Pete, you remember this? I seem to remember you were the mastermind.
Comment by Pete Salerno on January 25, 2009 at 3:46pm
The tankers really went to pot after we went to J series. H series, you still had the combined 113/M1A1 platoon and the tankers and scouts sort of developed a real badass cav mentality. Bob Peterson and Bernie Reynolds are good examples of soldiers that I would call cavalrymen instead of tankers. After the tankers went to their own platoons, some of that mentality seemed to be lost a little. After a while it seemed that the only people going on patrol anymore were scouts. Since I got to Gates knowing how to read a map, I was APL on my first border tour and PL for the next eight.
Favorite rad food story: Up at Gates, on Reaction (of course) and Twinkie blows us out. He would blow us out and wait at the location we were supposed to go to. Once there he would harass us with stupid stuff, border definitions and crap like that.
Beautiful summer day, we were booking through this little ville and came to a T intersection that we were supposed to turn right at. On the other side of the T was a gasthaus. I'm TC'ing the 113 and I think it was Bernie Reynolds in the M1 behind me. Right as we're getting ready to turn, this old rad comes running across the street hollering at us. He comes up to the side of the track and hands me and my driver (Curry) one of those little bottles of schnapps. Curry looks at me, I look at Curry, we rip the caps off the little bottles, down the schnapps and throw the bottles on the pavement where they exploded most gratifyingly. We roared at the old man, he roared back at us and we hauled ass in a cloud of diesel smoke. Pretty badass. Bernie was pretty chapped that he didn't get any. I always figured that old man had walked the walk on the Ost front or something like that.
Comment by Joe Harten on January 25, 2009 at 2:29pm
I can still recall the newly arrived Tank Commanders from the states on road marches standing in the hatches w/out their maps. When we'd stop and they were told they'd be leading out, the look of panic on their faces was priceless. They didn't know where they were and had to admit it.

My first time leading I was scared to death with the responsibility, especially being the lowest ranking TC in the regiment. Thank God for the good training I received from my previous TCs, I didn't get us lost. After a while that became my permanent position because the LT trusted me not to embarrass him.

I almost blew it on one occasion though. My crew and I got into the habit of sending the local German kids for fresh brochen and other local fare whenever we stopped. Heck, it beat C rations hand down. Anyway, one morning while we were wating for the kids to return, we got the word to move out! After stalling for as long as we could, we pulled out, pissed off that we lost our money and fresh food. We hadn't gone far when my loader yells that the kids were chasing us. Sure enough, there they were screaming up on their bikes with sacks from the bakery, butcher, fresh coffee and juices. My driver slammed on the brakes, collected the food over the front slope and threw the kids about a case of Cs in gratitude. After that the whole crew is laughing our heads off and the CO and LT are yelling over the net wondering what the hold up was. I could barely control myself when I had to concoct some mechanical difficulty as an explanation over the radio. They bought it though 'cause they couldn't see the horde of kids. We did get some funny looks when we were eating our continental breakfasts propped up out of the hatches. The icing on the cake was at the next stop, my crew was commended by the CO and LT for the quick mechanical fix! I thought they were going to give us a medal.
Comment by Eric Leafblad on January 25, 2009 at 2:24pm
That Open House at Gates was such a DISASTER!! The first sarge made us paint everthing red and white. The place looked like Candy Land with guns. I knew there was trouble before the Officers told us the PVS5s were stolen. They were running around panic in their eyes. We had a formation in the Gym. Then the entire Troop, on line, walked every open area and field in the Mark T area looking for those goggles.

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Colonels of the Regiment

8th Colonel of the Regiment Nelson B. Sweitzer 9 Jun 1886 – 29 Oct 1888



This was the third design of the 2d Cavalry DUI, worn from 1924-1931. The sharp points on the ends of the bottom scroll again called for a redesign.


Machine Gun Troop, 2d Cavalry; Adjutant General.

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