1ST RANGER BATTALION
A HIGHLY TRAINED AND RAPIDLY MOBILE FORCE
Recognizing the need for a highly trained and mobile reaction force, the chief of staff of the Army, Gen. Creighton Abrams, in the fall of 1973, directed the activation of the first battalion-size ranger qualified personnel since World War II. Headquarters, Forces Command, issued General Order 127, directing the activation of the 1st Battalion (Ranger), 75th Infantry, with an effective date of Jan. 31, 1974. Selection for personal ran from March through June 1974, at Fort Benning, Ga. On July 1, 1974, the battalion parachuted into Fort Stewart, Ga, where the battalion was stationed until moving to Hunter Army Airfield, Ga, in Sept. 1978.
1st Battalion (Ranger), 75th Infantry was first called upon in 1980, as elements of the battalion participated in Operation Eagle Claw, the Iranian hostage rescue attempt. The groundwork for the regiment’s special operations capability of today was laid during training and preparation for this operation. Rangers and other special operations forces from throughout the Department of Defense developed tactics, techniques, and equipment from scratch, as no doctrine existed anywhere in the world at the time. The combat effectiveness of the battalion led to its subsequent deployment to the island of Grenada, Oct. 25, 1983, to rescue United States citizens and restore democracy.
The change of the 75th Infantry to the 75th Ranger Regiment in March of 1986 caused the battalion to be re-designated the 1st Battalion, 75th Ranger Regiment. On Dec.20, 1989, the battalion was again committed to combat operations supporting Operation Just Cause. The battalion’s successful combat jump and seizure of Torrijos-Tocumen Airfield and subsequent operations contributed significantly to the United States victory in Panama.
From Feb.12 to April 15 1991, elements of Company B, and 1st Platoon, Company A, 1st Battalion, 75th Ranger Regiment, deployed to Saudi Arabia in support of Operation Desert Storm. They conducted raids and provided a quick reaction force in cooperation with allied forces against the opposition forces loyal to Saddam Husain.
In Dec. 2001, after the events of 9/11, elements of Headquarters Company and Company A deployed in support of Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan. In 2002, the entire battalion returned to Afghanistan to support the continuing war on terrorism.
In 2003, 1st Battalion participated in combat operations in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom, conducting missions across the entire country of Iraq. The battalion distinguished itself during the successful rescue of the prisoner-of-war, Pfc. Jessica Lynch.
First Ranger Battalion continues to conduct combat operations within Afghanistan, supporting national strategic objectives and combating terrorist networks.