4-18 Infantry Diaries
4th Battalion, 18th Infantry
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From Patrick A. Wilkinson, (SPC, B/4-18th IN 1991, Dismount Infantryman):
Hello, My name is Patrick A. Wilkinson, formerly Specialist, and I was transferred to Gelnhausen from Mainz. In Mainz, I had been serving with Delta Co., 5/8th Inf. when the wall came down in Germany and the 8th Infantry was to be disbanded. Soon after that, my orders for Fort Carson, Colorado were ripped up (a devastating thing for a Florida boy). I was transferred to the Spearhead Division, because they were in need of light infantry as dismounts for their coming deployment to Desert Storm. I was proud to serve with the 3rd Armored Division in Saudi Arabia, Iraq and Kuwait. Upon returning to Gelnhausen, I had the time of my life celebrating our victory and survival. I will always remember my days with Bravo Company, 4th of the 18th Infantry, 3rd Armored Division. Sincerely, Patrick A. Wilkinson
From Travis Sinnard, (SPC, B/1-48 & 4-18th IN 1987-1990, M60 Gunner):
I was assigned to the 3AD Replacement Detachment (AEK02) APO 09039, from the 21st Replacement Detachment, at Rhein-Mein AFB on 31 May 1987. On 1 June 1987, I was assigned to HHC 1/48 INF (AE7TO), APO 09091, at Coleman Kaserne, in Gelnhausen, Germany. I was assigned to the S-1 Section of HHC 1/48 as their M-60 gunner and M577A2 Track Driver from 1 June 1987 – 28 February 1989. Even though my MOS was 11B10, Infantryman, the S-1 NCOIC at the time liked to utilize Infantryman within his shop as he could use them not only as clerical staff, but also they had they advantage of Infantry training that was a benefit to the S-1 shop during ARTEP’s, Reforger, etc. Working within HHC and the "S Shops" really let me get a behind the scenes view of all that really has to transpire in order for a unit to function. In 1988, 1/48 INF went into NET (New Equipment Training) at Vilseck, Germany, with follow-on gunnery at Grafenwohr and Hohenfels (Grafenwohr and Hohenfels were like a second home to us all – I think I spent more time there than in Garrison), for the Bradley Infantry Fighting Vehicle, to replace the M113 APC. On completion of NET, we were awarded the MOS 11M10, and kept 11B10 as a “secondary.“ 1988 was also my first and only year to experience Reforger. Working with our NATO allies in this exercise was an experience I will never forget. 1988 was a year of transition for 1/48 INF, and also marked our transition from the Jeep to the HMMWV. > > On 1 March 1989, I was transferred to a line company, B Co 1/48 INF, at my request, and with the endorsement of the Battalion Commander, Lt Col Robert J. StOnge, so I could spend my last 11 months utilizing the Infantry skills I had strived so hard to acquire at Fort Benning, GA. While assigned to B Co 1/48 INF I started as a M-249 SAW gunner, progressed to Platoon RTO, and finally to a dismounted Fire Team Leader for a very short time. The 1st Plt "Bandits" of 1/48 and later 4/18 were just exceptional human beings and soldiers as well. Here is just a partial list of some of the finest people I have ever met: SFC John Santiago, Plt Sgt (Definitely a "soldiers soldier and a great influence on me); SSG George Leonty (SSG Leonty could always keep us laughing, even in the worst circumstances), SSG Cabanilla, Sgt Patrick Bridwell, SPC Lance Countryman, PFC Michael Patterson, SSG Samuel Miller, SGT Mateo, and SPC Joseph Nabb. There are a few more guys, but my memory is kind of fuzzy on the other names. > > In June of 1989, 1/48 INF was re-designated 4/18 INF Regiment. This was a morale killer for all us, due to the rich history of the 1/48 INF. > > In January 1990, I opted to ETS rather than revert back to being an 11B10 at the request of the DA and accept my next assignment to Panama, or Korea. This was probably a large mistake in hindsight as I miss the Army on a daily basis, not to mention all my fellow "Bandits" from 1st Plt B Co 1/48 – 4/18, but I was tired from spending almost 3 years overseas and had wanted to go back to Fort Benning, GA to possibly try and get into Airborne and DA and the Brigade Reenlistment NCO said that wasn’t going to happen! > > On 28 January 1990, I departed Gelnhausen, Germany and returned to out process from the Army at Fort Jackson, SC on 31 January 1990, after 2 years, 11 months and 28 days of active duty. I had requested that the Army let me remain for an additional 3 days so I could have 3 full years of active duty, but the Army in all it’s infinite wisdom went ahead and discharged me, which actually wound up hurting me when I started applying for Federal Civil Service jobs. > > My wife and I currently reside in Corpus Christi, Texas, after having relocated here 2 months ago from Houston, Texas.