2nd Battalion
30th Field Artillery

[World War Two] [Erlangen] [Fort Lewis] [550th] [HHB] [SVC Btry] [A Btry] [B Btry]
[C Btry] [RVN General] [Then & Now] [2/30] [3/30] [5/30] [1/30 Augsburg] [Home]

[Heritage Home ]
SETAF stands for Southern European TAsk Force. Sergeant Missile support was provided by 2/30 FA
This statue of Saint Barbara, the Patron Saint of the Artillery and Airborne Soldiers is located on the parade grounds at Vicenza, Italy. The statue was donated by the 1st Missile Command of SETAF and dedicated by Francis Cardinal Spellman on 4 October 1956.
It is quite fitting that the statue remains here at Vicenza. As Patron Saint of the Airborne also, St Barbara nows stands at SETAF Headquarters in Vicenza. Vicenza is now also the home of the newly reactivated 173rd Airborne Brigade.
Crete April 1975: SP4 Clifford Scott (R) (13B) Crewman #3, and SGT. Ralph Jones (L) (15B), Assistant Section Chief, make listed checks on the host and cables. The Sergeant launcher was powered by a generator that was fueled by JP4. SGT. Jones wore hearing protection because of the noise of the generator.

Sp5 Mark Fall (R) (15B), the computer operator, and SGT. Ralph Jones (L) in the Battalion motor pool in February 1975. Sp5 Fall was in charge of kidnapping of personnel. Sgt Jones is either trying to explain how the missile rises prior to firing or is trying to tell how he hurt his finger. Sgt Jones was the son of a Southern Baptist Preacher and would never give anyone a one finger salute!
Crete 75: Sgt Jones makes finial checks on the cables prior to closing the launcher. SP4 Ray Ramussen (15B), Boom Operator and SP4 Scott watch from the ground. Scott left the 2/30th in June of 1975 and PCSed to Turkey
CRETE 75: Crewman #1, Sp4 Mike Lavelle (pictured) (15B), in front of the missile. SP4 White, the Battalion Artist and a member of the Survey Team painted the missile and the launcher.
Battalion HQ, April 1975 (A black event in the history of the US Army): SP4 Charles COMMA Causey becomes SGT. Causey. SSG Steve "Wee Willie" Cosden (R) and the Battalion Commander, LTC Blank do the honors. SSG Cosden was nicknamed "Wee Willie" because he is a a foot and a half shorter than SGT Causey. Note the shells of the Corporal Warheads on the left and right that were painted with the 30th FA Crest. No one has been able to state where they went to after the Battalion disbanded in DEC 1975
CRETE 75: It's hard to see, but that is the missile raised for firing. The countdown is at T-2:05 and on hold. Sgt Jones and SP4 Scott are removing the bands that hold the rear stabilizers (fins). This was the last real moment of tension prior to launch. There was always a chance that one of the stabilizers could expand early and injure the crewman. This action was completed and the countdown continued. At T-0 the last Sergeant Missile Fired by the US Army Europe disappeared over the Ocean.
Sgt Jones check bolts on the missile cradle. Sp4 Lavelle and Sp4 Noble, crewman #2 look on.
The truck transporting the missile warhead waits a safe distance away. Sp4 Mailta Nava waits to be called up. Due to the inherent dangers of all missiles, only essential personnel are allowed on site while the missile is being built.
New Years 1975: Unlike some missile units, the soldiers of B Battery all got along. Sp4 Scott (R) and Sp4 Jim Steffes fake punch Sp4 Richard Bates. Scott was firing crew, Jim was commo, and Bates was supply.
The "Stars and Stripes" was our outlet to the world. Here, SP4 Price Hatchett relaxes by reading the somewhat censored paper
Sp4 Clyde Wiggins and PFC Willie Jordan enjoy looking at their developed pictures. Almost all personnel, who were without their families in country, made pictures. Wheather it was everyday military life, beautiful Vicenza, or Venice, which was less that an hour away, the hard part was deciding which ones to send home and which ones to keep
Scott lights up while in the background we just may have the reason Hatchett fell over. We never planned parties in the barracks, they just happened. The strange thing was that, even under the influence, we always got along.
Claude Weatherspoon, Bates and Lavelle decorate the tree for Christmas 1974. Claude was the country boy that every unit has. He always had a statement that made good sense if you broke it down into English like, "makes as much sense as letting frogs fly." Claude could also play a mean guitar, "Country" only.
SSG "Wee Willie" Cosden at 4 feet 11 inches and 110 pounds. Everyone like SSg Cosden but we also knew he was the boss. The mud flaps on the launcher were painted for Crete. One had WEE Willie as a mouse and the other had Ralph Jones as Howdy Doody. The mud flaps somehow disappeared after Crete.
Sp4 Joe Cabral "chillen out" after work. Joe was in his mid thirties and we called him "grandpa." Joe was very glad that WEE Willie was around, at least he wasn't the shortest thing around.
Sp4 Gardner and SP4 Scott on top of the barracks in Crete. Hattchett and Cabral look out from the top of the stairs. From the roof you could see the ocean. Italy was just hitting spring in April, but Crete was eighty degrees days with seventy degree nights.
SP5 Fred Webber and Ray Rassemun in the motorpool in Febury 1975. Fred was on the survey team and computed the data for the firing in Crete. Ray hated the Army but was one heck of a boom operator.
Sgt Jones and Sp4 Scott are in "hurry up and wait" mode while waiting for other checks to be completed. The warning sign is in English and Creek.
Sp4 Scott and Sp4 Noble rest in the shade of the launcher as SP4 Russemun tries to perform and act, though physically impossible, all of us have done at one time or another. The white sheets around Nobles' neck are Crewman # 2's checklist
The stock pile of backup missile motors, guidence sections, and warheads but not just for the Sergeant System. There are sections here for the Sergeant, Nike-Herceles, Nike Ajax and Lance. Two days after B Battery 2/30th FA fired the last Sergeant Missile fired by the US Army Europe, a German ADA Battery fired the last Nike Ajax to ever be fired in the world.
All vehicles stayed in the holding area until needed on site. It took a whole unit to support the firing section. The launcher had painted on it the military branch symbol of all MOS's in the unit. The ammo trucks had the American Flag on the side.

[World War Two] [Erlangen] [Fort Lewis] [550th] [HHB] [SVC Btry] [A Btry] [B Btry]
[C Btry] [RVN General] [Then & Now] [2/30] [3/30] [5/30] [1/30 Augsburg] [Home]