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About Fort Hood

About Fort Hood

The soldiers of Fort Hood are infantrymen, cavalrymen, and tankers. They are engineers, mechanics and health care professionals. They are the life of Fort Hood. Their training gives Fort Hood its purpose just as Camp Hood soldiers did 60 years ago.

Fort Hood has made the hidelines recently for tragic news, and are hearts go out to all those affected by this terrorist attack by Major Hassan. However, despite this unfortuante event Fort Hood has a long and proud history servering America. Since WWII it has been an intregal part of today’s military. Learn more about Fort Hoods history.

Fort Hood is a United States military post located in Killeen, Texas. It is located halfway between Austin and Waco, about 60 miles (100 km) from each, within the U.S. state of Texas.

Fort Hood Map

Its origin was the need for wide-open space to test and train with World War II tank destroyers. The War Department announced the location in January 1942, and the initial completion was set for that August. As originally constructed, Fort Hood had an area of 158,706 acres, with billeting for 6,007 officers and 82,610 enlisted personnel. The main cantonment of Fort Hood had a total population of 53,416 as of the 2010 U.S. Census. It is in Bell County, with some portions of the post in Coryell County.

The post is named after Confederate General John Bell Hood.

Fort Hood During WWII

During World War II, tank destroyers were developed to counter German mobile armored units. These were mobile anti-tank guns on armored halftracks or specially developed tanks. Wide-open space was needed for the tank destroyer testing and training, which Texas had in abundance. Andrew Davis (A.D.) Bruce was assigned to organize a new Tank Destroyer Tactical and Firing Center, and he chose Killeen, Texas for the new camp. The War Department announced the selection on 15 January 1942.

M1A2 Abrams Tank @ Fort Hood

M1A2 Abrams Tank @ Fort Hood

At the end of 1942 there were about 45,000 troops living and training at Camp Hood. Camp Hood reached its peak population of almost 95,000 troops in late June 1943 until early 1944.

The last year of World War II saw a major shift of emphasis in Camp Hood’s mission and a drastic reduction in population. As the war came to an end, the training of troops slowed and equipment reclamation and demobilization planning became the priorities. A separation center was established in September 1945, and as the year ended, post strength had fallen to 1,807 prisoners and about 11,000 troops.

The only assault helicopter company in the U.S. at that time (The 181st Assault Helicopter Company) had the sole mission of supporting project MASSTERS.

Residents from Belton to Lampasas experienced more than one year of “UFO sightings” with strange lights at night.

Fort Hood Today

The year 2001 ushered in a new era for Fort Hood as security and the war on terrorism became a prime focus. Fort Hood transitioned from an open to a closed post with the help of military police from reserve units. The 1st Cav sent additional troops to Kuwait as a protective measure against possible aggressive actions from Iraq. The 4003rd Garrison Support Reserve unit fills vacancies left by deploying units at Fort Hood. Fort Hood also has a key role as a training base for mobilizing Reserve and National Guard units to support the Homeland Defense effort.

Many Fort Hood units have deployed to Afghanistan for Operation Enduring Freedom, and to Iraq for Operation Iraqi Freedom. The 4th Infantry Division was able to capture Saddam Hussein in December 2003. The 1st Cavalry Division will follow on the heels of the 4th Infantry Division as they deploy to Iraq in the spring of 2004. Task Force ODIN was created at Ft. Hood.

Fort Hood Today

Fort Hood Today

13th COSCOM and key enablers were called into action in support of Joint Task Force Katrina/Rita hurricane relief efforts in September 2005 and went on to serve as the senior joint logistical support command for JTF Katrina. 13th COSCOM eventually provided one hundred million rations, collected human remains with dignity, executed emergency engineering operations, transported, distributed and stored over one billion dollars in humanitarian relief from both non-governmental and federal sources from across the nation.

Fort Hood is one of the largest United States military installations in the world, and is the home of III Corps, 1st Cavalry Division, 13th Sustainment Command, First Army Division West, 3rd Armored Cavalry Regiment, 41st Fires Brigade and many other Forces Command and other units.

Today, Fort Hood has nearly 65,000 soldiers and family members and serves as a home for the following units: Headquarters III Corps; First Army Division West; the 1st Cavalry Division; 13th Sustainment Command (formerly 13th Corps Support Command); 89th Military Police Brigade; 504th Battlefield Surveillance Brigade; 21st Cavalry Brigade (Air Combat); 4th Combat Aviation Brigade; and the 31st Air Defense Artillery Brigade. Fort Hood also includes Carl R. Darnall Army Medical Center and the Medical And Dental Activities as tenant units.

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