History - 4/12 Cavalry



The 4th Squadron, 12th Cavalry was constituted in the Regular Army as Troop D, 12th Cavalry Regiment on February 2, 1901 and was organized on April 24th 1901 at Fort Sam Houston, Texas.

For additional Regimental historical information for the period of 1901 through 1949 see the 12th Cavalry Regiment history at xxxxxxx

4th Squadron History


The 4th Squadron, 12th Cavalry  was activated at Fort Knox, Kentucky on 15 February 1962 its Cadre coming from the 6th Armored Cavalry Regiment and subsequently was assigned to the 5th Infantry Division (Mechanized), with movement to Fort Carson, Colorado on 17 February 1962.

From 1962 to 1965 the Squadron has participated in various exercises as a separate unit and as a part of the division. Some of the major exercises were:


Dates Area

Swift Strike II

8 August 1962 - 15 August 1962 South Carolina

We Will

2 October 1962 - 16 October 1962 Fort Carson

Swift Strike III

4-August 1963 - 16 August 1963 South Carolina

Cooly Crest

5 May 1963 - 20 May 1963 Washington

Desert Strike

5 April 1964 - 9 June 1964 California

In addition, Squadron tankers traveled to Fort Irwin, California for tank gunnery exercises various times since its activation.

In 1968, A Troop of the 4th Squadron, 12th Cavalry deployed to Vietnam from Fort Carson as part of the 1st Brigade, 5th Infantry Division (Mechanized) arriving on July 27, 1968. When the Brigade departed Vietnam in August 1971, Troop A remained behind and was attached to the 3rd Squadron, 5th Cavalry which was part of the 101st Airborne Division (Airmobile). On November 30, 1971 Troop A departed Vietnam. Visit the Troop A web site at http://www.atroop412cav.com/

The Squadron served at Fort Polk from 1976 until its deactivation in 1990.

Source: Portions of the history are from the pamphlet titled IN FRONT OF THE BEST - A BRIEF HISTORY OF THE 4th SQUADRON, 12th CAVALRY 1901 - 1965, on the Troop A, 4/12 Cavalry web site at http://www.atroop412cav.com/history/booklet/


4th Squadron, 12th Cavalry
Annual History Supplement, 1968



A.    General

Under the leadership of LTC John M. Fairey, Calendar Year 1968 was unquestionably the most eventful in the history of the 4th Squadron, 12th Cavalry since its activation in 1962.

Highlights in the year's history of the 4th Squadron, 12th Cavalry included the transfer of A Troop to Vietnam in June, the deployment of elements of the Squadron to the eastern cities in connection with civil disturbances in April, the arrival and subsequent attachment of E Troop 114th Cavalry (69th Infantry Brigade), and the conduct of command post and field training excises throughout the year.

B.    Mission, Objectives, and Policies

The most important missions or projects in 1968 were the deployment of A Troop to Vietnam and the reception of E Troop, 114th Cavalry at Ft. Carson. Both of these projects required an increase in training activities especially in light of the requirements, to maintain readiness posture and to provide support for forces deployed overseas.

The major objectives of the command were as follows:
    a.    Maintain & Training Readiness Condition (RFDCCN) equal to assigned Readiness Capability (REDCAPE).
    b.    Prepare and deploy A Troop to Southeast Asia.
    c.    Continue training to support GARDEN PLOT operations.
    d.    Successfully integrate E Troop, 114th Cavalry into Squadron operations.
    e.    Improve command and management techniques designed to guide and train relatively inexperienced staff and troop leaders.

The major policies of the command in 1968 were as follows:
    a.    Continue training as published in pertinent Training Directives.
    b.    Increase combat readiness by testing weapons and equipment in field exercises.
    c.    Recognize material readiness to be of equal importance as personnel readiness.
    d.    Improve standards of maintenance of combat equipment to include the individual soldier's combat gear.

C.    Squadron Commanders

LTC Selwyn P. Rogers assumed command of the 4th Squadron, 12th Cavalry on 2 June 1967 and remained in this position until his reassignment to G-3, 5th Infantry Division (Mechanized) on 18 March 1968,

Major Donald T. Kirby served as interim Commander of the 4th Squadron, 12th Cavalry from 18 March 1968 to 7 April 1968.

LTC John M. Fairey became commanding officer of the 4th Squadron, 12th Cavalry on 8 April 1968.



A.    Key personnel


Commander Rank/Branch Start End  

HQS & HQS Troop

Jacobson, Gary A. 1LT ARMOR 2 Sep 67 19 May 68  

HQS & HQS Troop

Boswell, James H. 1LT, ARMOR 20 May 68 Present  

Troop B

Moss, John L. Captain, ARMOR 7 Dec 67 Present  

Troop C

Kyle, Frederick A. Captain, ARMOR 27 May 67 21 Jun 68  

Troop C

Louis, Geoffrey Captain, ARMOR 22 Jun 68 Present  

Troop D

Cherry, Jack M Captain, ARMOR 8 Dec 67 Present  

Troop E

Stanton, Stephen S. Captain, ARMOR 13 May 68 Present  

The Squadron Sergeant Major during all of 1968 was SGM Raymond T. Kelly. On 31 July 1968, he was promoted to Command Sergeant Major.

B.    Strength

At the beginning of the year, Squadron strength figures were as follows:


Officers Warrant Officer Enlisted Total

Total Personnel Authorized

45 22 719 786

Total Personnel Assigned

38 3 568 609

During the year, Squadron strength fluctuated widely due to incoming RVN returnees and to ETS losses. Authorized strength was changed by General Order #315 effective 19 September 1968.

At the end of 1968, Squadron strength was as follows:


Officers Warrant Officer Enlisted Total

Total Personnel Authorized

41 22 636 699

Total Personnel Assigned

39 2 533 574



A.    Movement of A Troop to Vietnam

The training program of A Troop prior to shipment overseas is covered in detail in Section IV, Training Activities. The re-equipping of the Troop is explained in Section V, Logistic Activities.

The advance party of the 1st Brigade included most of A Troop, which consisted of 5 officers and 220 enlisted men. They departed from Peterson Field in C141 Aircraft on 1 July. The balance of the Troop departed during the period of 22-30 July.

The bulk of the equipment of A Troop was shipped by rail from Fort Carson to the Military Ocean Terminal, Bay Area (MOTBA), Oakland, California, then by ship to Da Nang, Vietnam.

B.    Activation of E Troop, 114th Cavalry, 69th Infantry Brigade

The Troop was ordered to active duty as of 13 May 1968 in a message received from DA dated 11 April 1968. The Troop remained at its home station for 10 days after its induction to accomplish administrative and logistic tasks. On 23 May the Troop arrived at Fort Carson. On 19 September 1968 the Troop was detached from the 69th Infantry Brigade and attached to 4th Squadron, 12th Cavalry, by General Order #274 dated 19 September 1968. The squadron had been involved in assisting the Troop in logistic preparations and training prior to this formal attachment.

C.    Operation GARDEN PLOT

The 4th Squadron, 12th Cavalry added as a filler unit to bring major GARDEN PLOT elements up to required strengths. In this capacity, Squadron elements participated in and conducted civil disturbance training, and were involved in the April deployment in connection with civil disturbances.


A.    Training Mission, Objectives, and Policies

The training mission of the 4th Squadron 12th Cavalry was to maintain a high level of combat readiness and to insure the successful accomplishment of assigned missions. Notable among assigned missions were individual and unit training, civil disturbance training, Troop A training, and Troop E, 114th Cavalry training.

In March, the 1st Brigade as given the commitment to train and prepare for deployment to Vietnam within 12 weeks, thus initiating the intensive training program for A Troop. The training commenced on 25 March 1968 and consisted of 8 weeks of Squadron training, followed by 4 weeks of Brigade level training.

Essentially, what was accomplished at the Squadron level was to take a 10 week Armored Cavalry Troop ATP, increase the RVN oriented areas, place considerable emphasis on live fire exercises, and complete the training in
an 8 week time period. Concurrently, the A Troop tankers were firing their annual Tank Gunner Qualification administered by the 4th Squadron, 12th Cavalry. The training an ability of A Troop proved so exceptional compared to the remainder of the Brigade, that he Brigade Commander chose them as the security force for his advance party. This can only be attributed to the aggressive spirit and cooperative effort of the men of A Troop, 4th Squadron, 12th Cavalry.

Training objectives were in line with accomplishment of assigned missions and in accordance with applicable training directives. These Squadron objectives included increasing individual and unit proficiency in all phases of combat operations to include CBR warfare and use of SOPIs. A continuing objective was that of proper presentation of mandatory subjects.

Training policies were based on a view toward the accomplishment of training objectives rather than the completion of a specified number of hours for each soldier. It was found that this approach greatly simplified structuring of training programs as well as providing adequate time for completion of mandatory training.

B.    Highlights of 1968's training were as follows:

Individual and Small Unit Training

1 Jan- 4 Feb


Tank Gunnery Program

5 Feb - 5 May


Civil Disturbance Training

1Mar - 30 Mar


Troop A Training for deployment to RVN

25 Mar - 1 Jun


Training Advisory Assistance to E/114

24 Jun -19 Aug


Platoon Tactical Training  

5 May - 13 Jul


Troop Tactical Training

12 Oct - 25 Oct


Squadron Tactical Training

12 Oct - 25 Oct


Division Command Post Exercises

19 Aug - 21 Aug

 24 Sep - 26 Sep 22 Oct - 25 Oct 5 Nov - 8 Nov

Division Field Training Exercises

18 Nov - 22 Nov





A.    Equipping of A Troop, as far as the 4th Squadron, 12th Cavalry was concerned, simply involved a lateral transfer of property from the Squadron property book to A Troop, thus establishing a separate property book for them. From that point, (about 19 March 1968), until the Troop's deployment, A Troop re-equipped with the 1st Brigade. That r-equipping is covered in detail in the 5th Division Annual Historical Supplement for 1968.

B.    Upon notification of the arrival of E troop, 114th Cavalry, 69th Infantry Brigade, the Squadron began preparations for reception of the Troop. This preparation involved repairing barracks assigned to E Troop and drawing and setting up bunks, foot lockers, wall lockers and other fixtures. Several of the Squadron's Troops were required to move into smaller areas and into new barracks in order to accommodate E Troop. The remainder of the year was spent supporting E Troop as one of the Squadron's organic elements within limitations imposed by separate property books.



The Annual General Inspection for 4th Squadron, 12th Cavalry was held during 5-10 February 1968. Results of the inspection were as follows:

Headquarters and Headquarters Troop - Excellent

A Troop - Excellent

B Troop - Satisfactory

C Troop - Satisfactory

D Troop - Excellent

Squadron overall rating - Excellent

The Squadron Command Maintenance Management Inspection was conducted on 6-10 September 1968. The Troop inspected was E, 114th Cavalry, and their rating was an overall SATISFACTORY.

One Troop underwent the Commanding Genera's Inspection on 19 October 1968. The Troop inspected was E Troop, 114th Cavalry, and their rating was an overall SATISFACTORY.


A noteworthy element of the 4th Squadron, 12th Cavalry not shown on the TO&E is the Squadron Horse Platoon.

This ceremonial unit is composed of 21 enlisted men, a stable of 21 horses, and accompanying uniforms and equipment. The men wear blue Cavalry uniforms patterned after those worn during the first two years of the Squadron's history, at the turn of the Twentieth Century.

The following schedule shows selected activities in which the Horse Platoon participated during the last year:

January-June                Retirement Reviews at Fort Carson

March                          St. Patrick's Day Parade in Denver

June                           Ceremonial Parade in Pueblo

July                            Centennial Activities in Cheyenne, Wyoming

August                        Pikes Peak or Bust Rodeo at Colorado Springs

August                        50th Anniversary of Fitzsimmons Hospital in Denver

October                       Mounted Aggressors on Field Training Exercise (FTX) at Fort Carson

December                    Christmas Youth Activities Program at Fort Carson


Source: Charles Cooper, A Troop, 4/12th Cavalry, 68-70



4th SQUADRON, 12th CAVALRY organization
(Armored Cavalry Squadron, TOE 17-105H)

Headquarters & Headquarters Troop (HHT)
"A" Armored Cavalry Troop
- Headquarters Section (1 M577A1, 1 M113A1)
- Maintenance Section (1 M113A1)
- 3 Mortar Squads (3 107mm mortars on M106A1)
- 3 Armored Cavalry Platoons
----- Platoon Headquarters (1 M113A1)
----- Tank Section (4 M60 tanks)
----- Scout Section (2 TOWs on M113A1)
"B" Armored Cavalry Troop
- (idem)
"C" Armored Cavalry Troop
- (idem)
"D" Air Cavalry Troop (TOE 17-58H)
- Troop Headquarters (1 OH-58A Kiowa)
- Mess Team
- Flight Operations Section
- Service Platoon (2 UH-1H)
- Aeroscout Platoon (9 OH-58A Kiowa)
- Reconnaissance Platoon (5 UH-1H)
- Aeroweapons Platoon (9 AH-1S Cobra attack Helicopters)

Source: Yves Bellanger