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1st Battalion, 227th AVN AH-64 D Model


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1st Battalion, 227th AVN AH-64 D Model

A hand-crafted AH-64D model of the 1st Battalion, 227th AVN. Each piece is carefully carved from wood and hand painted to provide a piece you’ll love.

The 1st Battalion, 227th Aviation Regiment is an attack helicopter battalion that is a subunit of the 1st Air Cavalry Brigade (1ACB), the aviation brigade for the 1st Cavalry Division. The battalion is an AH-64 Apache battalion based at Fort Hood, Texas.

The unit’s nickname is “First Attack” because 1st Cavalry Division was “First into Manila” in February 1945. Major General William C. Chase gave the Division its nickname “First Team”, it was well-received and remains today. In September 1945, the “First Team” led occupational forces in to Japan’s capital city, earning the distinction of “First in Tokyo“. Next, the 1st Cavalry Division stormed ashore at Poe-Hongdong, South Korea, in the Korean War’s first amphibious landing. By July 1950, the Division began offensive operations to the north and crossed the 38th parallel on 9 October 1950. Closing on North Korea’s capital 10 days later, the “First Team” was “First in Pyongyang”. In July 1965, the 1st Cavalry Division was re-stationed to Fort Benning, Georgia and organized for new missions in Southeast Asia. The unit became the Army’s first “Airmobile” division and initially saw combat in the Republic of Vietnam during the thirty-five-day Pleiku Campaign, earning a Presidential Unit Citation. The enemy launched the famous Tet Offensive in late January 1968. Already on the move, the “First Team” rushed north, liberating cities and boldly repelling the enemy offensive. The Division’s sky troopers flew in to relieve the besieged Marine base at Khe Sanh and the Division was “First into Cambodia” in May 1970.[1]

From the beginning of the Global War on Terrorism, the 1st Cavalry Division and its Brigades continued this tradition of service by deploying six times to Iraq in support of Operation Iraq Freedom and Operation New Dawn. These deployments would include engaging anti Iraqi and Al-Qaeda forces throughout the country, the first free elections in Iraq and providing training to Iraqi security forces and support to the people. The Division’s four BCTs deployed to Iraq in 2010-2011 as Advise and Assist Brigades and their goal was to strengthen Iraqi sovereignty, stability, and self-reliance while supporting counter-terrorism operations. Operation New Dawn marked the Division’s last deployment to Iraq. The 1st Cavalry Division and its brigades would deploy to Afghanistan four separate times in support of Operation Enduring Freedom. In 2011, the Division distinguished itself by exceptionally meritorious achievement from 19 May 2011 to 19 April 2012 in Regional Command – East, Afghanistan. The command created a unified team that was integrated in all operations and committed to working by, with and through Afghan institutions. The First Cavalry Division Headquarters deployed to Afghanistan to assume command of Regional Command-South on July 7th, 2014 and later the Train, Advise, Assist Command-South. United States’ and Coalition Forces, under the command of the 1st Cavalry Division in Southern Afghanistan, conducted train, advise, and assist missions so that the Afghan National Security Forces would be sustainable and capable of protecting their population and government into the future. With the 1st Cavalry Division Headquarters and elements of the 3d Cavalry Regiment deployed to Afghanistan, events required the Division’s remaining units take on new missions around the world. Units deployed to areas where no 1st Cavalry Division Troopers have ever been or had not seen for decades. These areas included Europe, Korea, Africa and Cuba. First Team Troopers demonstrated their excellence while performing a wide variety of missions during multiple operations. The Army’s finest Soldiers and best equipment, the hard-riding spirit of the United States Cavalry is alive and well in the 1st Cavalry Division. Our more than 26,000 Soldiers combine the spirit of the Cav’s heritage with challenges facing an alert, combat-ready, armored division. The “First Team” remains ready to fight anywhere, anytime, and win.[1]

Service dates
The original unit was constituted 1 February 1963 as Company A, 227th Assault Helicopter Battalion, an element of the 11th Air Assault Division. The unit was officially activated on 11 February 1963 at Fort Benning, Georgia. On 1 July 1965 the unit was reorganized and re-designated as Company A, 227th Aviation Battalion and officially assigned to the 1st Cavalry Division at Fort Hood, Texas. The unit was inactivated from 19 November 1974 to 21 May 1978. The company was again active from 1978 to 1983 at Fort Hood. The company was inactivated on 30 September 1983. On 16 July 1987 the unit was reactivated and re-designated Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 1st Battalion, 227th Aviation at Fort Hood, Texas. 1 October 2005 the battalion was re-designated 1st Battalion, 227th Aviation Regiment and on 16 October 2005 it was relieved from assignment to the 1st Cavalry Division and assigned to the Combat Aviation Brigade, 1st Cavalry Division.[2]

Vietnam War
On the 1 February 1963, the Army began to gather helicopters into the 11th Air Assault Division to test the airmobile concept. In June 1965, the 11th Air Assault was joined with the 2nd Infantry Division. Shortly thereafter, the division exchanged colors with the 1st Cavalry Division. On 1 August 1965, the 1st Cavalry Division was sent to Vietnam. The battalion participated in 14 campaigns and received seven decorations during its 7 years of duty in Vietnam.

Upon return from Vietnam, the 227th Aviation Battalion was inactivated on 19 November 1974 at Fort Hood, Texas. After a brief reactivation from 21 May 1978 until 30 September 1983, it was re-designated as 1st Battalion, 227th Aviation Regiment, the first divisional Apache Attack Helicopter Battalion to be formed. Upon re-designation, the 1–227th underwent an intensive 6-month unit training program and began to training for combat operations.

The Gulf War & the 1990s

1-227th’s Flight Patch in the late 1990s
On 29 September 1990, the battalion deployed overseas to Dhahran, Saudi Arabia, where the unit postured for combat in Operation Desert Shield. On 25 February 1991, with the onset of Operation Desert Storm, the battalion conducted a raid as a part of the 1st Cavalry Division’s deception plan. The battalion would serve as the vanguard of the division’s movement north to cut off retreating an Iraqi Republican Guard Division at Basra. On 7 March 1991, the battalion would return as part of the advance party back to Fort Hood, Texas.

On 2 June 1998, after years of testing and preparation, 1st Battalion, 227th Aviation Regiment became the first Army Aviation Battalion to field the AH-64 Apache “Longbow”.

Global War on Terror
OIFII task force unit patch
With the onset of Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF), the 1st Battalion, 227th Aviation Regiment, under the command of LTC Dan Ball, arrived at Camp Udari, Kuwait, on 14 February 2003, and was attached to Task Force 11th Aviation Regiment operating under the command of the U.S. Army V Corps.

1st Battalion, 227th Aviation Regiment, under the command of LTC Dan Ball, arrived at Camp Udari, Kuwait, on 14 February 2003
In the early hours of 24 March 2003, Apache Longbows of the 1st Battalion, 227th Aviation, 1st Cavalry Division, engaged units of Iraq’s Republican Guard Medina Division between the cities of Karbala and Al Hillah, about 96 kilometers (60 mi) south of Baghdad.

CSM Ortiz leading convoy from Kuwaiti border to TACTICAL ASSEMBLY AREA VICKSBURG, Iraq
A majority of the battalion’s helicopters sustained extensive battle damage, but only one went down. Both pilots survived and were captured, later being rescued by US Marines after the fall of Baghdad. On 21 May 2003, the battalion redeployed to Fort Hood.

First Battalion, 227th Aviation Regiment has deployed to Iraq three more times in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom. From April 2004 to April 2005, under the command of LTC Ron Lewis
, the battalion returned to Iraq as part of OIF II, and helped set up Camp Taji for aviation operations. In October 2006 the battalion once again deployed to Camp Taji under the command of LTC Christopher E. Walach, for a 15-month deployment in support of OIF 06-08. The battalion again deployed to camp Taji, under the command of LTC Charles Dalcourt, from April 2009 to April 2010 in support of OIF 09-10.

After a 6-month reset, the battalion task-organized into a full-spectrum task force and began deployment preparations for deployment to Afghanistan. In January 2011, the task force deployed to Fort Carson, Colorado, for High Altitude Mountain Environmental Training (HAMET), to better prepare the aircrews for the extreme altitudes of Afghanistan’s Paktika Province. In May 2011, the task force deployed to FOB Sharana, Paktika, Afghanistan where it conducted full-spectrum aviation operations throughout the Paktika, Paktia, Ghazni and Khost provinces in support of Regional Command (East). In July 2011, the Task Force made history when one of their AH-64Ds became the first AH-64D to exceed 10,000 operational flying hours. After a year at Sharana, First Attack redeployed to Fort Hood with the 1st ACB. In July 2012, the unit changed command, with LTC Phillip Baker assuming command of the Battalion. They re-organized as an Apache-pure attack Battalion on 15 July 2012 and are currently conducting regeneration and training operations for future deployment contingencies.