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555th ANTIAIRCRAFT ARTILLERY BATTALION


Constituted 19 December 1942 in the Army of the United States as the 555th Coast Artillery Battalion (Antiaircraft) (Automatic Weapons) and activated 20 February 1943 at Camp Hulen, Texas. Redesignated 15 May 1943 as the 555th Antiaircraft Artillery Automatic Weapons Battalion (Mobile). Departed the New York Port of Embarkation 28 August 1944; arrived in England 3 September 1944. Committed to combat in the European Theater of Operations and landed in France on 2 October 1944. The unit was at Herborn, Germany at the end of World War-II (15 August 1945 location). Served in the Army of Occupation of Germany from 2 May to 4 July 1945. Returned to the United States via the New York Port of Embarkation on 8 December 1945 and inactivated 9 December 1945 at Camp Kilmer, New Jersey. Allotted to the Organized Reserve Corps and assigned to the 104th Infantry Division on 1 March 1952. Activated 1 March 1952 with Headquarters at Seattle, Washington. Organized Reserve Corps redesignated 9 July 1952 as Army Reserve. Redesignated 15 November 1952 as the 555th Antiaircraft Artillery Battalion (Automatic Weapons). The 555th Antiaircraft Artillery Battalion (less Battery A), Army Reserve was inactivated and transferred to the control of Headquarters, Department of the Army 27 Jul 59. By the same authority, Battery A, 555th Antiaircraft Artillery Battalion was redesignated Battery E, 104th Regiment (AIT), Army Reserve. Relieved from the 104th Infantry Division and disbanded (less Battery A) effective 11 June 1959 at Seattle. CAMPAIGN PARTICIPATION CREDTIS: Rhineland; Central Europe. DECORATIONS: Presidential Unit Citation (Army), Streamer embroidered ROER RIVER BRIDGEHEAD (Btry A, 555th AAA AW Bn cited for period 23-25 Feb 1945 per DA GO 64, 1948). COAT OF ARMS: SHIELD: Gules, between two flanks, the dexter per pale wavy azure and or and the sinister reversed, a barrulet dancette of the last, in base a fleur-de-lis of the same. CREST: That for the regiments and sepatate battalions of the Army Reserve: On a wreth of rthe colors or and gules, the Lexington Minute Man proper. The statue of the Minute Man, Captain John Parker (H. H. Kitson, sculptor), stands on the common in Lexington, Massachusetts. MOTTO: ALERT-ABLE-ABSOLUTE SYMBOLISM: The colors red and yellow are for Artllery. The shield itself alludes to the State of Washington where the Battalion was activated and stationed after World War-II. The two blue wavy sections, representing water, refer to Puget Sound and Lake Washington between which Seattle, the organization's headquarters was located. The jagged yellow line symbolizes Washington's mountainous terrain and also simulates three V's (The Roman Numeral 5) and thus refers to the battalion's numerical designation. The fleur-de-lis indicates combat service in Europe in World War-II. DISTINCTIVE INSIGNIA: The distinctive unit insignia is the shield and motto of the coat of arms. SPECIAL NOTE: During World War-II the unit adopted the cartoon character FATMAN as their unit insignia and the unit was known as "Five by Five". On a white shield the FATMAN in stride wearing a black tux and cane. Both Insignia available for sale at $4.75 each (includes postage). Contact: 1SGT Charles W. Aresta, US Army (RET); The Hawaiian Military Insignia Collectors and Study Group; 1813 Sereno Street; Honolulu, Hawaii 96817-2318 (Ph or fax: (808) 537-2753) or e-mail: ra1sgt@aol.com



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