Special Forces Soldiers memorialize Battle of Little Bighorn

Discussion in 'Multinational HQ' started by Trip_Wire, Jul 7, 2006.

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  1. Trip_Wire

    Trip_Wire RIP

    Special Forces Soldiers memorialize Battle of Little Bighorn

    RELEASE NUMBER: 060706-01
    DATE POSTED: JULY 6, 2006

    Special Forces Soldiers memorialize Battle of Little Bighorn
    10th Special Forces Group (Airborne) Public Affairs Office

    CROW AGENCY, Mont. (USASOC News Service, July 6, 2006) — Arriving at the invitation of Crow Tribe leaders and local National Park rangers, a group of Army Green Berets impressed audiences here by parachuting in to help honor the 130th anniversary of the Battle of Little Bighorn June 23-25.

    About a dozen Soldiers from the 10th Special Forces Group (Airborne), based at Fort Carson, Colo., provided three military free fall parachute demonstrations during memorial events to pay tribute to the famous battle, which on June 25, 1876, pitted U.S. cavalrymen against victorious American Indian forces here, including Sioux and Cheyenne Indians.

    More than 260 members of the U.S. 7th Cavalry died on the Little Bighorn battlefield here, including the unit commander, Lt. Col. George A. Custer in his famous “Last Stand.”

    With support from two UH-60 Black Hawk helicopters of the Montana Army National Guard’s Company A, 1-189th Combat Support Aviation Battalion based in Helena, the 10th SFG Soldiers parachuted from an altitude of 9,000 feet into three related events. On June 23, they jumped into a veterans’ remembrance ceremony at Apsaalooke Veterans Park here as part of the Crow Native Days celebration. Then, on June 25, they parachuted again to mark the 130th anniversary of the Battle of Little Bighorn at the Little Bighorn Battlefield National Monument. Their final jump, that same day, commemorated Custer’s Last Stand at Medicine Tail Coulee on the battlefield.

    During the ceremony at the national monument, the Soldiers also placed a memorial wreath at the cemetery there to honor the fallen fighters of Little Bighorn, both U.S. Army and American Indian. The Soldiers were recognized individually for their service and received a special blessing from the Crow during the veterans’ ceremony on June 23.

    The Green Berets are uniquely suited to help memorialize the Battle of Little Bighorn, in part because the U.S. Army’s Special Forces is the only organization in the U.S. Army that traces its lineage back to the legendary U.S. Army Indian Scouts of the late 19th and early 20th centuries, said Lt. Col. Rick Steiner, the deputy commander of the 10th SFG, and one of the Special Forces Soldiers present to mark the occasion.

    “Since they have their roots with the Indian Scouts who served with the U.S. cavalry … it’s very special to have (Special Forces Soldiers) here to participate in the 130th anniversary,” said Darrell Cook, superintendent of the Little Bighorn Battlefield National Monument.

    Steiner added that modern-day Special Forces heraldry features many American Indian tributes, including the crossed arrows that represent the Special Forces branch and the arrowhead-shaped shoulder patch of the Army’s Special Forces groups.


    Update: A team of Green Berets from the 10th Special Forces Group (Airborne), led by deputy commanding officer Lt. Col. Richard Steiner (right), place a memorial wreath during a remembrance ceremony for the 130th anniversary of the Battle of Little Bighorn June 25 at the Little Bighorn Battlefield National Monument in Crow Agency, Mont. The Soldiers, who are based at Fort Carson, Colo., had parachuted onto the battlefield itself only moments before forming up to present the memorial wreath in honor of the warriors who fell there in 1876. (U.S. Army photo)

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  2. Interesting article. Interesting about the Crow tribal leaders inviting them in.
  3. "Battle of the Greasy Grass?"
  4. Agreed. Being a Montana native myself, I have to say it's good to see both sides getting together and agreeing on a fitting tribute. Of course I didn't see anything about how the Sioux and Northern Cheyenne felt about it, and they're the ones whose ancestors fought there.
  5. Yeah, but I think the crow were in the Indian Scout units there with the Cavalry. But yeah, that is strange.
  6. It's not so strange when you note that American Indians have worn the uniform in greater numbers proportionally than other ethnicities from the start of the twentieth century onwards. From all I've seen it's an extension of the warrior tradition they had prior to being invaded. The tribes tend to take great pride in service.
  7. I don't believe they trace their lineage to the Indian Scouts.

    Perhaps he actually meant these guys:

    Alamo Scouts
  8. Well the indians won this one so no wonder their happy to invite everyone to the memorial. :D
  9. I didn't say strange, I said interesting. Plenty of American Indians have served, I know that. After all, everyone knows about the code talkers. A man I know that served as a US Army ranger in Burma had a Sioux in his squad who was nicknamed 'Chief', and who called his Garrand 'Betsy'. I simply remarking that I think it's pretty cool.

    As for the Indian scouts, I'm relatively sure that at least some Crow tribesman were served as Indian scout in the Northwest. I'm almost positive they served under General Howard in the Nez Perce campaigns (I'll need to double check on that though).
  10. Trip_Wire

    Trip_Wire RIP

  11. My apologies. I had no intention tp portray your comments as negative or cynical.
  12. I read your links plus about five pages of Google queries and I've found nary a supporting document. I still contend that the only connection between the US Scouts and SF is a nod to the Scouts unconventional war tactics and skills as shown in the crossed arrows and arrow shaped SSI that currently adorns SF uniforms.

    The US Army has played a bit fast and loose with establishing lineage as I'm sure you've noticed. Too many lineages are established arbitrarily rather than through continuous service of a unit.
  13. Trip_Wire

    Trip_Wire RIP


    South S----? You must be from Missouri!

    Well you can "contend," all you would like; however, the Army says its the way it is, so I'll accept it that way! You of course are welcome to contend whatever you would like!

    As for playing fast and loose with the linage of both the Rangers and Special Forces linage. I'd have to agree! The Ranger linage was a part of the Special Forces linage, until the Ranger BNs were reactivated. In creating their linage they chose "Merrill's Marauders." to form the 75th Ranger Regiment. They also chose the First Special Service Force to form the Special Forces Regiment. (BTW: Soldiers and Officers wore the Crossed Arrows on their collars. (Brass.) They were also calle "Braves," as in Indian warriors.)

    I thought that te Army did a disservice, to both the Rangers and Special Forces Regiments when they created those linages for them. The true linage of the Special Forces is the OSS and the Rangers the WW II Ranger BNs. The Army needed at least a regiment or division to use for the linage of these units, so they chose the ones that they did. IMHO "Merrill's Marauders," was not a Ranger unit. The Rangers should have stuck with the WW II BNs, Korean War Companies and Vietnam Companies.

    In the case of the 75th Ranger Regiment, they left out the linage of the Korean War Airborne Ranger Companys (The 1st Airborne Rangers.) Their excuse was they were companys, yet they did keep the Vietnam Ranger Companys in the linage. The Koraen war companys were each assigned to a division and eight of them served in combat in Korea, two of which made a combat jump there. So, I agree the linage is IMHO screwed up.
  14. Louisiana, not Missouri.

    I'm still waiting to see something official stating the Indian Scouts are in the official lineage of SF. You can denigrate my "contention" all you'd like but without any supporting documentation you are "contending" as well.

    Something I've never understood, why can't the 75th Infantry and SF share a common lineage? It would seem very appropraite in that both engage in commando type ops (that's not to downplay SFs role in training/leading indigs). Barring that, lineage really is about continuity. The units I served in had mostly short histories yet we managed pride in them nontheless. Coincidentally I served in 5/20 Inf. A regiment that fought for many years against...Indians. :D
  15. No worries :wink:

    Anyway, I think what they mean is that the Green Berets are the "spiritual successors". It's certainly an unnofficial lineage. But it works for me.