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1964 Timeline
  Regardless of MOS if you recognize or participated in any of the events listed on this Timeline page and would like to contribute any information, personal stories, documents, media articles, photographs, or, if you can provide information on any events not listed, please take a moment to contact the History Project Manager at the Email Link provided below. Your contributions are important to the recording of the Battalion history and always welcomed here.
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This Page Last Updated   26 February 2016
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      All major theater activities, stateside incidents, or Cold War and Vietnam War events that affected the 720th MP Battalion’s force allocations, training, operations, deployments, morale or history are shown in Italic blue American Typewriter font.
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III Corps
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4th U.S.
Army
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1st Logistics
Command
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720th MP
Battalion
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Strategic Army Command (STRAC) Duty, Fort Hood, Texas

     At the start of the year the battalion’s organic units HQ & HQ Detachment, Alpha, Bravo and Charlie Company, being lead by a termorary interim commander who has yet to be identified, was headquartered subordinate to III Corps, U.S. 4th Army, 1st Logistics Command at Fort Hood, Texas.

January

Exact Date Unknown       With the ongoing buildup in South Vietnam and the battalion facing their second redesignation of Charlie Company for deployment as the 615th MP Company, they started their own military police training school to fill the staffing shortage of enlisted men. The school was held in a former barracks set up as a classroom. The instructors were obtained through the use of experienced Battalion cadre and the MP School (Ft. Gordon) training plan was utilized during the eight-week cycles. Students were obtained from the junior enlisted ranks of personnel interested in a change of MOS from other Army support branches. Graduates were assigned to the battalions organic companies, and anyone that didn’t meet the grade was returned to their initial MOS and branch.

20 January The battalion’s 23rd Anniversary (date of activation). Celebrations of the event were not mentioned in any available official records.

30 January GEN Duong Van Minh was ousted from power in a bloodless coup led by GEN Nguyen Khanh who became the new leader of South Vietnam.

GEN Khanh
February

6 February The interim commander assigned to replace LTC Earl B. Milburn passed command of the Battalion to LTC Albert R. Escola.

25 February The battalion’s unit-anniversary day (date of activation) of 20 January 1942 was officially designated by Letter AKPHO-720-18.

Unidentified
LTC Escola
March
.45 Pistol List
M60 List

3 March  Eighty-five personnel of Able Company qualified at the range with the .45 cal. Pistol. Sixteen qualified as Experts; Twenty-eight as Sharpshooter; Forty-one as Marksman. All but one of the troops that qualified were PVTs E1, the exception was a PFC, so it is believed that this group contained newly assigned replacements as well as the class cycles of the Battalion MP School.

4-10 March  Forty-one personnel of Able Company familiarized themselves with the M-60 Machine Gun, and three with the .45 cal. Pistol. This group is also believed to contain newly assigned troops and members of the battalion’s MP School class.

20 March  LG Carl H. Jark, 4th U.S. Army commander who arrived on post 19 March to inspect a number of facilities scheduled the battalion cantonment this morning with his command inspection team. After meeting with battalion command, he traveled directly to the Alpha Company area where he conducted a walk-through of the Advanced Individual Training (Battalion AIT MP School) barracks, day room and mess hall, and throughout the Bravo Company supply room.

21 March The first cycle Class I graduated from the Battalion MP Advanced Individual Training (AIT) School and received their certificates at a ceremony held at 0900 hours at the Fort Hood Little Theater to recognize the 39 new military policemen. CPT Landrum (unit unknown) performed the introduction followed by opening remarks by LTC Escola. The guest speaker was COL Bieri (unit unknown) followed by the awarding of certificates and honors by LTC Escola.

     The 1st Honor Guaduate was PFC Bobby J. Nix, the 2nd was Charles J. Zuberbueler. The remaining graduates were: John W. Allen; Pedro Alvarez, Jr.; Bobby R. Blake; Jessie W. Blaylock; Jerry D. Cameron; Clifton E. Carter; Bobby J. Coslin; Robert N. Cureton’; Derris L. Davenport; Ohaness H. Dellakian; Fortuino Escoredo; Brian P. Flynn; James K. Foster; Antonio Gallardo; Lynn R. Griffin; Lyle L. Gurnsey; Kenneth W. Hickman; Samuel E. Holloway; Carroll W. Jahn; Saul Jimenez; Carl V. King; Charles L. King; Troy L. Lester; Richard R. McGee; Matthew Ned; Robert G.Parker; Thomas G. Perez; Gary A. Ragsdale; James W. Ramsey; John W. Rhodes; Roland N. Riffe; Parrioio Rivera, Jr.; Donald P. Schuchert; George W. Showalter; John W. Weeks; Clyde A. Wright; and Charles E. Wrinkle. Upon graduation all personnel were assigned to the Battalion’s organic units.

Program
     The Honor Graduates from each cycle was presented with a Zippo lighter engraved with his name and the title of Honor Graduate and cycle (class) number on one side, and the unit crest affixed to the other side. The recipient also received a 4 day pass.
25 March   Ten Military Police Corps cadets from the University of Texas received an academic orientation of military police activities and functions at both post and armored division units. They visited the 502nd MP Company (2nd Armored Division) for an orientation and ride in an armored personnel carrier and a UH-19 helicopter. They next visited the 720th MP Battalion where they viewed the daily functions of an MP battalion and had lunch with the MPs of Bravo Company. They next visited a briefing of the Provost Marshal and viewed a guard mount followed by visits to the 43rd Criminal Investigation Detachment and 103rd MP Stockade Detachment.
April

21 April    A group of 30 cadets of the National Defense Cadet Corps unit at Bellaire High School, Bellaire, Texas toured Fort Hood on Monday 20th and Tuesday 21st, accompanied by their commandant and assistant commandant. On Monday they had breakfast at the NCO and Specialist Academy, followed by an introduction to the post by the assistant training officer for III Corps who also escorted the group on their tour. The 720th MP Battalion cantonment was among the units and facilities they visited on Tuesday .

24 April   Five Fort Hood lieutenants who were high school classmates in Walla Wall, Washington seven years ago discovered they we all serving in units on the post. In addition, four of their wives also discovered they were classmates. Of the five officers one was Paul R. Troech, Jr. of the 720th.

29 April  Elements of the battalion and III Corps Headquarters departed Fort Hood to participate in Exercise DESERT STRIKE. The battalion advanced party departed with III Corps Headquarters by motor convoy with the bulk of the battalion, ten officers and 200 enlisted personnel traveling by rail transport. At least a dozen other support units from the post also deployed. The 1st and 2nd Armored Divisions also deployed on 9 and 19 April, respectively.

     A 75-troop rear detachment of the battalion remained behind to provide continued post security.

     From 9 April through 4 May a platoon of twenty-two MPs from Bravo Company commanded by 1LT Fernando Zalduondo and SSG Adrian Karp were responsible for the 24/7 escort of 22 truck convoys containing from 43 to 527 vehicles from Fort Hood through Coppas Grove along Highway 190 to the traffic circle in Lampasas, through the city and northwest for 16 miles to a final checkpoint where they continued on their own under each convoy commander for the final 1,300 mile journey to the war games site.

     The escorts were a joint venture with assistance rendered by the Fort Hood Provost Marshal operations officer, and traffic control in Coppas Grove and Lampasas by civilian police counterparts from the Texas Highway Patrol, Lampasas City Police, and the County Sheriff. In all, the Bravo Company platoon escorts and the convoy trucks amassed a total of 280,000 miles without an incident.

      1LT Zalduondo said, “No only did our MPs do a fine job, but without the teamwork and fine support of the civilian authorities, the move could have not gone so smoothly.”

May
Exercise DESERT STRIKE

10 May   The large-scale joint Army & Air Force U.S. Strike Command two-week (17-30 May) training exercise began. It was held to test the initiation of tactical nuclear warfare, control of escalation, and tactical operating on the nuclear battlefield. It was the largest maneuvers held since World War-II.

     Over 100,000 troops were deployed for the war games, along with hundreds of tanks, aircraft and over 7,000 other military vehicles. The battlefield was split between two opposing countries, one on the east and the other the west side of the Colorado River.

     The area encompassed a total of seven southwestern states. The west side of the river was named “Calonia“ that included the sates of Oregon, California and 2/3 of the western half of Nevada. The east side of the river was named “Nezona” and included the states of Utah, Colorado, Arizona, New Mexico, Texas and the remaining 1/3 of eastern Nevada.

The exact exercise missions of the battalion elements assigned is unknown. It is believed they participated in headquarters security, traffic control and enemy POW transport and control.

28-30 May   To recognize and honor those veterans who have given their lives in defense of this nation, the flag at III Corps Headquarters was flown at half-staff on the 28th, 29th and raised on the 30th at noon to full-staff to celebrate Memorial Day. The honored assignment for the flag raising at Reveille and at noon on Memorial Day was given to the 720th MP Battalion Honor Guard.

June

18 June   Fifty-eight new personnel with the rank of Private E2 were administratively attached to the battalion’s HQ & HQ Detachment for a period of 60 days, twenty-one to Bravo Company and 36 to Able Company. All were assigned to ration at the Bravo Company mess. Although unverified, it is believed they were the next cycle class of the battalion’s MP School.

     On the same orders PVT Bobby J. Nix was reassigned from Bravo Company (training) permanently to HQ & HQ Detachment, and PFC Jerry W. Murray of Alpha Company was assigned from MOS 111.10 (infantryman) permanent to 951.10 (military police) secondary.

23 June The III Corps Headquarters monthly G4 Green Thumb Contest for seven categories of troop barracks and housing lawns was announced. The areas included are Troop Housing, McNair Village Housing, Chaffee Village Housing, Patton Park Housing, Pershing Park Housing, Walker Village Housing and Wainwright Heights Housing. The selection committee judges are the presidents of the Officers and NCO wives clubs. The lawn of SFC D. Rohrbough of the 720th was the winner for Walker Village.

Assignment Order
PFC Nix
July
23 July  Indonesian military police officer MAJ Parmudar Jono, on a month long visit to Fort Hood hosted by the U.S. Army, was escorted on his first M-60 tank ride at the 66th Armor by LT Paul R. Treoh of the 720th.
August
Late August-early September Two platoons of B Company were taken off of the STRAC alert and resumed normal duties.  Records do not indicate the exact reason these platoons were on alert, however it may have been due to the political turmoil in Saigon, South Vietnam.
September
Exact Date Unknown  PVT Richard Muggenburg of Bravo Company was recognized by MAJ Rex L. Hollen at the graduation ceremony for the Small Arms Maintenance Course at the Fort Hood NCO Academy as the first place student.
13 September  In South Vietnam, before dawn the ruling military junta led by General Nguyen Khanh was threatened by a coup attempt headed by General’s Lam Van Phat and Duong Van Duc who sent dissident units into the capital Saigon. They captured various key points and announced over national radio the overthrow of the incumbent regime. With the help of the Americans, GEN Khanh was able to rally support and the coup collapsed the next morning without any casualties.
26 September 23rd Anniversary of the Military Police Corps.
October
Exercise GOLD FIRE-I ~ Task Force Ozark

     Yet to be identified organic elements of the battalion participated in Joint Exercise GOLDFIRE-I, a joint Army and Air Force close ground support exercise held in Missouri. To support the exercise, a platoon from Bravo Company commanded by Platoon Leader 1LT John A. “Jack” Kochenour, was assigned routine MP duties at Walnut Ridge Air Force Base, Arkansas.

     A second platoon of one officer and nineteen enlisted men (parent unit unidentified) was deployed to Elgin Air Force Base, Florida.
     The Army was dissatisfied with Air Force close air support and was forming its own air arm. Its growth was rapid. During this period the Aviation School, Transportation School, Signal School, and Aberdeen Proving Ground, as well as many other Army agencies devoted their considerable talents and manpower to improving and supporting the concept of airmobile.
     The Army, not the Air Force, was becoming the acknowledged leader in vertical flight and ground-effects assets. The helicopter filled a dual purpose for the Army but was a sinister threat to the Air Force. Although rotary-wing aircraft offered the Army a credible means of increasing air support, it placed great pressure on the Air Force to enhance ground support capabilities or risk losing that mission and the attendant budget to the Army. Both services made half-hearted attempts to resolve their differences, taking a stab at a joint testing program using the 11th Air Assault Division. However these efforts were characterized by competition rather than cooperation.

     The Air Force concept was tested in October and November 1964 in exercise GOLD FIRE-I at Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri involving elements of the 1st Infantry Division and C-230 transports and fighter-bombers from the Tactical Air Command.

     It was quickly evident that nothing new was being offered with regard to close air support of ground forces. The uninspiring results of GOLD FIRE-I and the success of Army tests led in January 1965 to a recommendation by the Joint Chiefs, with the Air Force dissenting, to cancel GOLD FIRE-II.
     The Joint Chiefs responded, again with the Air Force in dissent, by recommending approval of the Army request for an airmobile division. In June 1965, the Secretary of Defense authorized the organization of the 1st Cavalry Division (Airmobile). It was activated in July 1965 and was made up of resources from the 11th Air Assault and the 2d Infantry Divisions. The division’s advance party arrived in Vietnam in late August of that year.
WANTED: Official information, photographs or personal stories of battalion veterans relating to Joint Exercise GOLDFIRE-I. Please contact the History Project Manager via the Email Link at the top of this page.
November

9 November PFC’s Clifford C. Glatzig and Wayne R. Aranaz of Able Company were promoted to Acting Corporal, and 2LT William E. Thomas and SFC Clarence W. Bryant, Jr. of Able Company were appointed to the Unit Fund Council.

15 November Battalion elements departed for return to Fort Hood, Texas from Missouri and Arkansas at the termination of Joint Exercise GOLD FIRE-I.

26 November The following appointments, promotions, and MOS changes were made by A Company, under Unit Orders #48:

SGT James T, Webb, Jr. as Reenlistment NCO (Vice: SGT Manuel P. Madueno); CPT Donald J. Landrum as Reenlistment Officer, Unit Saving Officer, and Education Officer (Vice: 2LT Larry S. Edwards); 2LT Larry S. Edwards as Supply Officer, Fire Marshal, and Insurance Officer (Vice: CPT Donald J. Landrum); 2LT William E. Thomas as Maintenance Officer, Material Readiness Officer, Athletic & Recreation Officer, Claims Officer; Communications Officer, Voting Officer, and Utilities Conservation Officer (Vice: CPT Donald J. Landrum).

     Promotion from Private E2 to Private First Class E3: Edward H. Gaumont, George J. Kurkowski, Jr., David H. Lofthouse, Guillermo Vidal-Rivera, John W. Wade, Jr., and Robert A. Wilson.

     MOS change: PFC Robert N. Curston from MOS 941.10 to 951.10: PFC Edward F. Murray from MOS 631.10 to 951.10.

December
7 December 2LT William E. Thomas, CPL’s Anthony A. Pagana and Charles J. Zuberbueler of A Company were assigned to the Chemical, Biological & Radiological Warfare School held at the Fort Hood, NCO Academy. 2LT Thomas’s orders were revoked on 8 December.
8 December 2LT Julius L. Germano, Jr. (A Company), SGT Robert J. Hadley and SP/4 Billy Sam (B Company), and SP/4 Jessee M. Roberts (C Company) were assigned to the Chemical, Biological & Radiological Warfare School held at the Fort Hood, NCO Academy.
18 December 2LT William E. Thomas (A Company) was appointed as Class A Agent (paymaster). SGT Alan J. Schrader was reassigned from HQ Company, 12th Engineer Battalion to HQ 720th MP Battalion, PVT David G. Christie was assigned from the MP School, Fort Gordon, GA to C Company.
1963 Miscellaneous Photographs Index
This Index contains miscellaneous photographs from 1963 that have yet to be directly linked to any specific Battalion Timeline event. If you can date any of the events depicted, or identify them as part of a specific event, operation, exercise or special duty assignment, please use the Email Link on the photograph or this page to notify the History Project Manager.
A "?" preceding the photo number denotes further identifications are needed, and an Email Link is provided.
Headquarters & Headquarters Detachment
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 WANTED: Your 1963 photographs.
Alpha Company
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 WANTED: Your 1963 photographs.
Bravo Company
B0027 ?
 SPC/5 Bobby J. Nix and unidentified MP.
B0028 ?
 SPC/5 Bobby J. Nix  and unidentified MP ready for guard mount.
B0030 ?
 SPC/5 Bobby J. Nix and unidentified MP at Motor Pool.
B0031
 SPC/5 Bobby J. Nix and driver for the Battalion CO.
Charlie Company
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 WANTED: Your 1963 photographs.