PHOTO ALBUM

 

173rd Airborne at Okinawa, 1963-65

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First airborne organization to be activated under the United States Army's new ROAD ( Reorganization Objective Army Division) concept came into being on Okinawa in June 1963 when the 173rd Airborne Brigade was formed from elements of the 2nd Airborne Battle Group, 503rd Infantry, immediately upon the battle group's return from participation in Exercise "DHANARAJATA", the SEATO maneuver in Thailand, June 25, 1963 the 2nd Airborne Battle Group, 503rd Infantry, was inactivated.  It had been on Okinawa three years following its designation in March, 1960 as the 2nd Airborne Battle Group, 503rd Infantry Combat team and its subsequent departure from the 82nd Airborne Division, Fort Bragg, North Carolina.  Officers and troopers became part of the newly organized 173rd Airborne Brigade.  Initial reorganization began in March, 1963, when Headquarters Company of the new brigade was formed. 

2/503rd Reinforced Infantry Combat Team (SEP)  1963

At the time of our first deployment to Okinawa, we wore the red and bright gold lightning 25th Inf Div patch with a Black w/ orange lettered Airborne Tab over the patch. I regret that I did not save one as memorabilia. Then we just wore the Airborne tab.

the first "prototypes were issued the wing was the same general design but not as "full" as the one used later. Also the Sword was referred to as looking like a Cancer Stick. The back ground was blue as now but a very plain cloth. It was referred to at the time as looking like a Chicken Feather with a Cancer Stick stuck through it. The patch evolved into the current version fairly rapidly. I think the first patches suffered from the material and production methods by the local supplier at the time

The Official Patch

1963

1963

173rd Band 1964

17th Cavalry

ANTI-TANK PLT

HQs, 1-503

B-2-503 1964

1964

Spencer

B-2-503 1964

Spencer

B-2-503 1964

2/503 1965

2/503 1965

2/503 1965

2/503 1965

2/503 1965

2/503 1965

2/503 1965

2/503 1965

2/503 1965

2-503-2_1965.jpg (70709 bytes)

2/503 1965

2/503 1965

 

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1963

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