Company F, 425th Infantry

Company F, 425th Infantry is a Long Range Surveillance Company of the Michigan National Guard. The unit came into being in the mid-1960s when the 1st Bn, 225th Infantry was reflagged as E and F Companies, 425th Infantry and adapted to the organization of a Ranger company. Ranger companies during the period were independent units assigned to division and higher level commands to perform Long Range Reconnaissance Patrol missions, as opposed to the Ranger Companies of today which comprise the battalions of the 75th Ranger Regiment. According to the United States Army Center of Military History, it was reorganized and redesignated as the 425th Infantry Detachment (LRS) effective 1 September 2008.

Contents

Organization

In its current organization, F Company consists of a large company headquarters and operations section, 3 patrol platoons, a communications platoon and a section of integral parachute riggers. Each patrol platoon consists of a platoon headquarters and, at full strength, six 6-man patrol teams. Company F has historically been an independent company within the Michigan National Guard, but for a period during the Cold War beginning in 1983, the Company remained a CONUS unit, but assigned to US Army VII Corps Headquarters in Stuttgart, West Germany, where it would deploy and serve as the Corps Long Range Surveillance Unit in the event of a NATO-Soviet conflict in Europe. Members of F Company hold Military Occupational Specialties (MOS) in the branches Infantry, Quartermaster Corps (Parachute Rigger 92R), Signal Corps and Military Intelligence. As it is an Airborne unit, members are required to attend the Army's Basic Airborne Course at Ft Benning, GA.

The regimental home for Company F, 425th Infantry is the 425th Regimental Association. All members and former members of the unit are authorized to join the Regimental Association. www.425regiment.org.

Equipment

While throughout the Cold War, many National Guard and Reserve forces remained poorly equipped in comparison to the active component, F Company, given its important role, was better equipped than most. It was one of the first units to receive M16 rifles and M1956 equipment in the National Guard, before some active units even. The unit has also historically been equipped with the most modern communications equipment. As an Airborne unit, F Company makes use of MC1-1D Static-line parachute which it often deploys with from aircraft of the Michigan Army and Air National Guard including UH-60 Blackhawks, CH-47 Chinooks, and C-130 Hercules transports, and historically other aircraft such as the UH-1 Iroquois (Huey), C-123 Provider and C-119 Flying Boxcar. Currently the unit makes use of equipment including the M-4 Carbine, the M249 Squad Automatic Weapon, M-203 Grenade Launcher, and the M9 Pistol, as with other combat arms units of the US Army.

Installations

Company F trains at Selfridge Air National Guard Base at Mount Clemens, MI, Camp Grayling at Grayling, MI and has historically been headquartered at the Pontiac Armory in Pontiac, MI.

Deployments and Civil Actions

Company F's first action was as part of the National Guard force brought to Detroit to quell the Detroit Race Riots, also known as the 12th Street Riot, of 1968, and performed its duties without casualties. The company never deployed to Vietnam, like many reserve component units, but saw many training deployments during the period to locations including Puerto Rico and other stateside military installations. The company also participated in several REFORGER exercises in the 1980s. After the 9/11 attacks, 3 members of Company F were activated and deployed to Iraq during the first phase of Operation Iraqi Freedom. They were designated as F 250th MI and attached to Company H 121st Inf (LRS). Company F was activated on 7 December 2003 and deployed to Iraq in support of the Iraq Campaign from February 2004 to February 2005, where it performed security operations, foreign internal defense training, as well as normal LRS mission's. Though a few received Purple Heart medals, the company was fortunate to return to Michigan with all of the soldiers with which it deployed a year earlier. Since its deployment, Company F has continued training with the benefit of widespread combat experience amongst the troops as a result of the tour of duty in Iraq. The company's pre-deployment training and deployment in Iraq are detailed at these links.[1][2] [3]

2nd Iraq deployment

Company F was activated again on 9 May 2009 and deployed to Iraq from Jul 2009 to May 2010.

Insignia

Company F, 425th Infantry (Airborne)(LRS) wears the distinctive Airborne tab above the griffin patch of the Michigan Army National Guard, distinguishing it as an Airborne LRS company. Prior to that they wore the Airborne tab above the shoulder patch of the 201st Military Intelligence Brigade. Before being reflagged as a Long Range Surveillance Company, members of Company F wore a scroll with "RANGER AIRBORNE" in lieu of an Airborne tab above the griffin patch and the black beret with distinctive flash which formerly identified them as Rangers. Today members of Company F wear the maroon beret, the distinguishing feature of the Airborne soldier.

See also


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