US Army Training Center - Yearbook (Fort Polk, LA)
- Class of 1974
Page 1 of 104
Pages 6 - 7
Pages 10 - 11
Pages 14 - 15
Pages 8 - 9
Pages 12 - 13
Pages 16 - 17
Text from Pages 1 - 104 of the 1974 volume:
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DEPARTMENT OF THE ARMY
HEADQUARTERS US ARMY TRAINING CENTER,
INFANTRY AND FORT POLK
Fort Polk, Louisiana
The weeks leading up to your graduation from Basic Combat Training have probably been
the most hectic, bewildering and hopefully beneficial weeks of your life to date. They have
changed you in many ways as you made your transition from civilian to military life.
This book attempts to document that change and points the way to your future in the
United States Army. lVly sincere wishes go with you for a professionally rewarding and
personally satisfying career. '
CHARLES E. SPRAGINS
Major General, USA
CHARLES E. SPRAGINS
Major General, US Army
Charles E. Spragins was born 11 April 1923 in Colon, Panama. He
attended Tome School, Port Deposit, Maryland, and received his com-
mission from the United States Military Academy, West Point, New
York, in 1945. His initial assignment was with the 19th Infantry Regi-
ment, 24th Infantry Division, first as platoon leader, then as company
executive officer. and later commanded several companies during the
Army of Occupation in Beppu, Japan. He also served as regimental
adiutant for a year before transferring to the 101st Airborne Division
CTrainingJatCamp Breckenridge, Kentucky, in 1948.
A year later, he was assigned to Birmingham, Alabama, as Assistant
Professor of Military Science and Training at Woodlawn and Ramsey
l-ligh Schools. I-le took command of the 10th Ranger Company at Fort
Benning, Georgia. in November 1950, and moved the unit to Camp
Carson, Colorado, before the unit finally joined the 45th Infantry
Division in Hokkaido, Japan. Upon the deactivation of all Ranger com-
panies in September 1951, he became a company commander in the
23d Infantry, 2d Infantry Division, Republic of Korea, and later served
as the Regimental S-3 until July 1952.
Upon completion of the Infantry Officers Advanced Course in May
1953, he was assigned as a personnel staff officer of the Infantry
Branch, Career Management Division in the Pentagon. After serving
three years in this assignment, he attended the Command and General
Staff College, Fort Leavenworth. Kansas, graduating in June 1957,
Moving to Headquarters, US Army Europe, he served as personnel
staff officer and in August 1958 was reassigned as a battalion Execu-
tive officer of an Armored Rifle Battalion in the 3d Armored Division.
From May to December 1959 he served as Assistant G-3 of that
division in Frankfurt, Germany.
Upon graduation from the Armed Forces Staff College in 1960, he
reported to the United States Military Academy as Senior Infantry
Instructor. ln June 1963, General Spragins reported to the Army War
College, Carlisle Barracks, Pennsylvania, and upon graduation was
assigned to the Republic of Vietnam where he served as Deputy
Commander of the 5th Special Forces Group for a year.
After serving as an action officer for a year in International Plans and
Policy Division, Office of the Deputy Chief of Staff for Military
Operations, Department of the Army, he was reassigned to the Office
of the Chief of Staff as Deputy Secretary of the General Staff where
he served for two years more in the Pentagon. In August 1968 he
assumed command of the 2d Brigade, 82d Airborne Division at Fort
Bragg, North Carolina. He left his command on 16 October 1969 to
become the Assistant Division Commander for Support, 82d Airborne
In December 1969, he assumed command of the newly activated 4th
Brigade, 25th Infantry Division at Schofield Barracks, Hawaii. A year
later, the unit was redesignated the 1st Brigade, 25th Infantry Division
when the colors of that brigade were returned to Hawaii from Vietnam.
In July 1971, he was assigned to Headquarters, US Army, Pacific at
Fort Shafter to become Deputy Chief of Staff for Operations. General
Spragins departed Hawaii in February 1973 and assumed com-
mand of the US Army Training Center, Infantry and Fort Polk,
Louisiana, 1 March 1973.
Major General Spragins has been awarded the Legion of Merit with
4 Oak Leaf Clusters, Bronze Star Medal with one Oak Leaf Cluster,
Meritorious Service Medal, Air Medal with three Oak Leaf Clusters,
Army Commendation Medal, American Campaign Medal, Asiatic-
Pacific Campaign Medal, World War II Victory Medal, Army of Occupa-
tion Medal, National Defense Service Medal with one Oak Leaf
Cluster, Korean Service Medal with three Bronze Stars, Armed Forces
Expeditionary Medal, Vietnam Service Medal with two Bronze Stars.
United Nations Service Medal, Armed Forces Honor Medal lst Class
Cvietnaml Republic of Vietnam Campaign Ribbon and five Overseas
Bars. He has also earned the Combat Infantryman's BadgeC2nd
Awardj, Senior Parachutist Badge, Glider Badge, Vietnam Parachutist
Badge as well as the Republic of Korea Presidential Unit Citation and
the Vietnam Cross of Gallantry with Palm.
Major General Spragins is married to the former Joyce Dingley and
they have five children, Mrs. Elizabeth S. Russell, Cwife of CPT. J. J.
Russell, lnf.l, Ellen E. Spragins, Charles E. Spragins, Jr., Joyce D.
Spragins ll, Catherine L. Spragins.
FORT POLK, the largest military installation in Louisiana,
is located in the western part of the state, near the bur-
geoning communities of DeRidder and Leesville. The training
center covers more than 199,000 acres 4311 square milesj
in picturesque Kisatchie National Forest.
The Arrny post, originally called Camp Polk, was establish-
ed in 1941 and named in honor of the Right Reverend
Leonidas Polk, the first Episcopal Bishop of the Diocese
of Louisiana, known as the "Fighting Bishop." He was killed
while serving as a Confederate lieutenant general in 1864
in Marietta, Georgia.
During World War ll, former President Dwight D. Eisen-
hower, Generals Mark Clark, Omar Bradley, Alfred Gruen-
ther, George S. Patton, Jr., and Walter Krueger were among
the famous leaders who directed the training of soldiers
at Fort Polk. The units receiving training included the 3rd,
7th, 8th, 9th, and 11th Armored Divisions, the 95th Infantry
Division and the 11th Airborne Division,
After the war, Camp Polk was deactivated and put on
a stand-by basis, but the summers National Guardsmen
and Reservists kept it partially open for two-week training
The Korean War brought Camp Polk back to life in Sep-
tember 1950 when the 45th Infantry Division, Oklahoma
National Guard, was activated and trained for duty, leaving
for Japan in 1951. The camp has also served as headquarters
for the XV Corps and later the 37th Infantry Division from
Ohio and the 1st Armored Division.
The post closed in 1954 and was reopened and designated
a Fort in 1955 with headquarters for Operation Sage Brush
in which over 85,000 troops took part. Exercise King Cole
was subsequently held at Polk before the post was deacti-
vated in June 1959. Summer encampments were the only
military activity until September 1961, when Polk facilities
were again required to support another national emergency
-the Berlin Crisis,
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During 1961-62, the 49th Armored Division served a year
of active duty at Fort Polk along with other tactical and
support units. On 1 June 1962 the post was designated
an Infantry Training Center. A planning group of Regular
Army personnel was assigned to establish a training pro-
gram. The first trainees arrived in July, and by early fall
units providing basic combat, advanced individual an com-
bat support training were fully operational.
Rehabilitation of post facilities was a gigantic task. Train-
ing and recreational resources had to be developed to
accomodate the Fort's new mission as a training center.
An intensive beautification program was begun in 1962
and is still continuing. A new Honor Gate, magnolia and
cypress trees, verdant lawns, lakes, and widened post roads
provide scenic welcome to visitors. Forty-seven picnic sites
have been developed for use by military personnel, their
families and friends. Alligator Lake and Toledo Bend are
other recreational sites undergoing constant improvement.
These projects are transforming Fort Polk into a garden
spot of Louisiana.
In December 1965 Polk was selected to conduct jungle
oriented advanced training and was named a permanent
installation 23 October 1968. By 21 April 1972, the post
had graduated more than 1-million trainees in basic combat,
advanced Infantry and combat support like cooks, clerks,
wiremen and mechanics.
Construction of new building began in 19673 among those
completed are six brigade classrooms, cold storage plant,
gas station, bowling alley, 100-man theater, 60-man batche-
lor quarters, Main Post Chapel, with a religious educational
facility, 28 chair dental clinic, an Information Center,
and one of the largest post exchange complexes west of
the Mississippi. Since the declaration of permanency, a
total of 260 sets of on-post housing is under construction.
Other projects nearly completed include batchelor enlisted
quarters, a family area with a new commissary, theater,
NCO Club, and 18-hole golf course.
Northwestern State University has extended its courses
on-post so that military and Civilian Students may now
attend college year-round and receive degrees without leav-
ing the post's campus.
The ranges and training areas, which include modern
electrically controlled target systems, all-weather access
roads, and many varieties of ideal terrain, make available
to Fort Polk trainees the finest area and facilities in the
Army for Infantry training. A closed-circuit educational tele-
vision system is included among the newest training meth-
ods and used in the six modern 1,000-man brigade class-
ln addition to material facilities, a dynamic training phi-
losophy has been developed. It is best expressed by General
Creighton Abrams' comment made during his visit to the
command in 1965. "At Polk they don't recognize that there
is anything they can't do." Its worth has been proved.
Trainees have matched and topped qualification scores ln
physical training, combat proficiency tests, and marksman-
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This is the gateway to the Army, How
do they get everything accomplished here?
This may be one of the thoughts that occurs
to a trainee as he processes through the
Fort Polk reception station. lt becomes quite
clear to him that they do get a great deal
accomplished during his brief few days stay.
Aptitude tests, physical examination, a
classification interview, orientation meet-
ings, a clothing issue and the creation ot
a permanent file-all are completed within
the few days of processing at the Recep-
The change from civilian to trainee has to
be a swift one. for in the next eight weeks
he will receive intensive training in the tun-
damentals of combat soldiering that he may
have to apply in the defense of his country
and his own life.
Even as the trainees move to their train-
ing companies, they have begun to under-
stand a little of the routine that will be-
come such an important part of their eight
weeks in Basic Combat Training.
DRILL 81 CEREMONIES
Sharp commands echo across the drill
field and marching feet beat a tatoo across
the ground: another order sounds, and doz-
ens of rifles snap in unison. These are
the sounds of an institution as old as
organized armies: dismounted drill.
The hours spent on the drill field have
one aim: to develop in the trainee an in-
stinct for precision, an ingrained habit of
obedience to command, a sense of team-
work. He learns squad. platoon, and com-
pany drill: the manual of arms, the school
of the Soldier withoutarms.
And in the training, he acquires habits
which are the foundation of all else he
will learn in the Army: discipline, alertness,
and trigger-quick response.
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PHYSICAL READINESS TRAINING
A soldier must be tough-tough enough
to stand a demanding daily routine: tough
enough to enter combat with a full mea-
sure of Strength. Physical fitness, there-
fore, is an essential part of a Soldier's
The physical training program of the
U.S. Army is designed to develop strength,
endurance, agility, and coordination-and
to promote confidence, aggressiveness and
What does it take? Miles of running,
hundreds of push-ups, dozens of repetitions
of the "daily dozen" exercises. The result:
strong men for a time which demands
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CHEMICAL, BIOLOGICAL 81 RADIOLOGICAL
C B R
The battlefield of the future-what may
it be like? In the face of uncertainty,
preparedness is essential, the U.S. Army
prepares its Soldiers with rigorous training
in defense against chemical, biological and
How do you recognize a CBR attack?
How do you protect yourself? What first
aid measures can be taken? The Army
trainee learns the questions and the an-
Practical training in the use of the M17
Protective Mask is an essential phase of
CBR training-one of the many drills nec-
essary in training Soldiers to deal with the
unknown weapons of the future.
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A Soldier must be versatile and self-
reliant. ln the clamor of battle, at a dis-
tance from complete medical facilities, a life
can depend upon his knowledge of first
Through lectures, demonstrations and
practical exercises, the trainee becomes
expert in first aid. He learns to deal with
splints. ties and bandages: to give emer-
gency treatment in case of shock, bleeding,
fractures, or insect bites and drowning. He
acquires skills which will prove valuable
to him both in the Army and in civilian life.
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Land Navigation is designed to introduce
the basic combat trainee with the methods
of recognition and navigation over unknown
The first period of instruction is used
to familiarize the trainee with military maps
and their use. The second period consists
of a practical exercise designed to teach
the trainee to use the Lensatic Compass
and pacing techniques.
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25 METER FIRE
The rifle is basic to the Soldier's train-
ing. He must know the rifle-and how to
Basic Rifle Marksmanship is the U.S.
Army course in rifle technique-and it be-
gins on the 25 meter range, a "minia-
ture" range which teaches the trainee
the fundamentals of marksmanship.
He learns to sight and aim, allowing
for variations in wind, terrain and rangeg
he learns to analyze his own firing actions
and to judge his performance. Then he is
ready to move on to further rifle training.
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KITCHEN POLICE CKPJ
During the first week in his training
company, the trainee becomes familiar
with many of the duties and responsi-
bilities that will be his sometimes his Army
career. As in civilian life, "housekeeping"
plays an important part in the duties of
From early morning to the late hours,
the mess hall kitchen is alive with the
clatter of pots and pans. An Army moves
on its stomach-and the trainee learns early
in his Army career that "kitchen police"
is an important part of his responsibility.
Each man, in turn, has his round at
aiding mess personnel in feeding his com-
pany three times a day. Each man faces,
sooner or later, the wearying lot of the
KP, And each man knows that, however
unglamourous the work may be, it's one
of his most essential duties.
FIELD CHOW INSPECTION
The 25-meter range stressed the fund-
amentals of rifle firing, grounding the
trainee in the basic skills of sighting and
aiming. In Field Firing, the trainee en-
counters more complicated conditions.
He learns different firing positions. He
encounters the "pop-up" target-the dark
silhouette which will become the measure
Placed at distances from 75 to 300 met-
ers, the targets are centrally controlled to
appear and disappear in varied times and
As the training progresses, it becomes
more difficult: the trainee at first knows
the target sequence: later he deals with
The targets are "killable"-when hit by
a bullet, they fall automatically. This system
adds interest and realism to the training,
and gives the trainee instant evidence of
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Flat on his stomach the trainee feels
the ground tremble from the blast of a
hand grenade he threw six seconds ear-
lier. ln the block of instruction that pre-
cedes this exercise, types, characteristics
and capabilities of the grenade are out-
lined. ln addition, rigid safety precautions
are enforced. Positions and throw tech-
niques are practiced and lead to throw
of a live grenade.
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This training prepares the trainee for
duties as a member of an interior guard.
Process for interior guard mount, duties
of a special guard, challenging and the
duties of a sentinel on post are included
in the instruction.
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INDIVIDUAL TACTICAL TRAINING
Instruction in the seventh week makes use
of previous training, applying it to com-
bat situations. ln day and night tactical
training, the trainee learns how to ne-
gotiate barbed wire obstacles with his wea-
pon cradled gently in his arms.
Each Basic Training company spends two
days in the field for bivouac: after march-
ing several miles, the trainees set-up two-
man tents and learn to live in the field
while sharpening their wits and proficiency.
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A man becomes a Soldier: he no longer
walks-he marches. He marches over grass
and sand and clay and gravely he marches
to and from training areas, drill fields,
All of the trainee's previous instruction
is climaxed by bivouac-encampment exer-
cise in the field. Here he lives in a tent
community, eats food prepared in the field,
practices the skills of the Soldier in the
forward battle zone.
He marches to the site of the encamp-
ment-carrying his weapon and a full pack.
He tests his training by experience, and
learns a final lesson: to respect and cherish
his most valued pieces of equipment-his
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On the close combat course, the trainee
finds a practical exercise that requires him
to apply other previously learned military
skills. He is required to coordinate his
individual actions with those of a team in
a tactical exercise.
Moving through broken terrain and ne-
gotiating obstacles as a team member,
the trainee must employ quick and ac-
curate rifle fire against surprise targets.
This training is designed to deny the enemy
the effective use of surprise through alert
and immediate engagement of surprise
Its most important dividend is develop-
ing within the individual a sense of team
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BASIC PHYSICAL FITNESS
The BPET is administered as five individ-
ually scored events: 1-mile run: inverted
crawl, dodge, run and jump, horizontal lad-
der, and bent leg sit ups.
These events have been carefully chosen
to demonstrate the most significant areas
of strength and stamina necessary to the
This test may be administered a number
of times throughout Basic Combat Training
to give both trainers and- trainee a bet-
ter idea of where physical conditioning pro-
grams should lay stress.
INDIVIDUAL PERFORMANCE TEST
The end of cycle comprehensive test pro-
vides the commander with a comprehensive
evaluation of the military abilities of each
trainee.Made up of eleven separate parts.
the test identifies those trainees qualified
to progress to advanced individual training
and those requiring additional training
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"Pass in Review". The trainees, who have
successfully completed the arduous Basic
Training period, march proudly past the
reviewing party and on into Advanced train-
ing. This first full-dress parade is often re-
called by the Soldier and symbolizes his
transition from civilian to Soldier.
Foot movements are synchronized and
every effort executed in unison: a foot
out of step is easily noted. After the cere-
monies, a reception and social hour is
held for the visitors and graduates. An
opportunity to meet and talk with the of-
ficers and men of the units is afforded
RQN GTH THROUGH KNOWLEUG
COL. ARNOLD S. STALLMAN
2ND BRIGADE HEADQUARTERS
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SECOND TRAINING BRIGADE
LTC Phillip J. Clements, Il
CSM Clyde O. johnson CPT Frank C. Harrison
Battalion Sergeant Major Company Commander
Commenced Training: Completed 'Training
22 CGMPANY D me
ZLT GeO1'g6 E. Garner ISG David Clark SDS Richard Kieltsch DS Ronald Applewhite
Executive Officer First Sergeant First Platoon First Platoon
DS Paul Bedard DS Alan Stahl DS Ronald I-Iammerly DS john T. Mendiola
First Platoon First Platoon Training NCO Second Platoon
DS Eddie Reeves DS Preston Smith SDS Rene Hernandez SGT Marion Mew
Second Platoon Second Platoon Third Platoon Third Platoon
DS Leonard D. Ross DS Calvin L. Hayhurst DS Ruben Lopez SSG Jimmy L, Woodward
Tlllfd Pl3.tOO!'1 Fourth Pl3.lZOOI'1 FOL1I'tl'1 Pl.8.tOO1'1 Supply Sergeant
SFC William Allen SP4 Charles A. Parker SP4 Glen Taylor SP4 Mark Omo
Dining Steward Company Clerk General Clerk Armorer
SP6 Anderson Mandygo SP6 Ronald Matthews SP5 Louie D. Trussell PVT Robert Gallagher
First Cook First Cook Cook Cook
PFC Paul Tenney
Appel, james, jr.
Austin, Bernard, jr.
Bell, Walter, jr.
Blake, Bruce, jr.
J I fa,
Caldwell, Newell, jr
Cano, Philip, jr.
Carter, Stanley, jr.
Edw ards, Leroy
Fleming, Lew, III
G arci a, Pablo
Gower, Louis, jr.
s M -0-'wmv
Groce, julius, jr.
Hall, Lawrence, jr
Hicks, Norman, jr
jones, Harry, jr.
jones, Richard, jr.
Moses, Leroy, jr.
Murphy, Lorenzo, jr
, it ,W
Richardson, W., I
Simon, Clayton, jr.
Smith, C. L.
Sutphen, Dock, jr.
Williams, M., jr.
Olson, Eskel, jr.
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