19th Special Forces Group

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19th Special Forces Group
19th SFG Flash insignia
Active 1 May 1961–present
Country  United States
Branch United States Department of the Army Seal.svg United States Army
US Army National Guard Insignia.svg Army National Guard
Role Special Operations
Part of Utah Army National Guard
Garrison/HQ Draper, Utah
Motto Anything, Any Place, Any Time
COL Mark Drown[1]

The 19th Special Forces Group is one of two National Guard groups of the United States Army Special Forces. Headquartered in Draper, Utah, with detachments in Washington, West Virginia, Ohio, Rhode Island, Colorado, California and Texas, the 19th SFG shares responsibility over Southwest Asia with the 5th Special Forces Group, and the Pacific with the 1st Special Forces Group.[2][3][4]


Activated on 1 May 1961 in Salt Lake City, Utah, the soldiers of the 19th SFG received their parachuting instruction at Fort Benning until the mid-1970s when the idea was born for a cost effective course to be taught for the 19th SFG, and other western U.S.-based military components, in the western territory of the country. In keeping with the rigorous high standards of the Airborne, the Aerial Fire Depot, a Smokejumper base founded around 1940 in Missoula, Montana, was selected as the site, and the first course was completed there in May 1978. This experiment was short lived. 19th SFG(A) paratroopers now attend the same Airborne training as their active duty counterparts and every other paratrooper in the US military at Fort Benning, Georgia. The group, headquartered in Utah, draws soldiers from more than a dozen states across the country and is deployed in support of Special Operations in various places around the world. Their official motto is De Oppresso Liber (Latin: "To Liberate the Oppressed"), a reference to one of their primary missions to train and assist foreign indigenous forces.

19th Special Forces Group
Soldiers with 2nd Battalion, 19th Special Forces Group check their course with compasses during a foot patrol while training at Camp Atterbury Joint Maneuver Training Center, Indiana
Soldiers from the 19th Group being lifted on board an Air Force HH-60 Pave Hawk helicopter at the Utah Test and Training Range in November of 2007, during CSAR integration exercises. 
A 19th Group soldier provides security with a turret mounted M60 machine gun during a convoy stop in Asadabad, Afghanistan in 2004. 
Slovenian and 5th Battalion, 19th Special Forces Group soldiers practice explosive breaching techniques during a three-week Joint Combined Exchange Training exercise in Slovenia
A soldier of from Company B, 2nd Battalion, 19th Special Forces Group instructs a Serbian soldier on the M240B 
Two soldiers from 5th Battalion, 19th Special Forces Group in Babil province, Iraq during the surge of 2007. 


On 13 November 2001, the following units of the 19th SFG were called to active duty:

  • A Company, 1st Bn/19th SFG—Fort Lewis, Washington
  • B Company, C Company, and Support Company 1st Bn/19th SFG—Utah
  • A Company, 2nd Bn/19th SFG—Rhode Island
  • B Company, 2nd Bn/19th SFG—Ohio
  • C Company and Support Company, 2nd Bn/19th SFG—Kenova, West Virginia
  • A Company, B Company, C Company and Support Company from the 5th Bn/19th SFG—Colorado

In April 2007, the 5th Battalion of 19th SFG and troops from the 2nd Battalion were called to Operation Iraqi Freedom.

The unit came home with no deaths and very few minor injuries.

On September 2008, the following units of the 19ths SFG were called to active duty (Operation Enduring Freedom XIII)

  • A Company, 2nd Bn/19th SFG—Rhode Island
  • B Company, 2nd Bn/19th SFG—Ohio
  • C Company, 2nd Bn/19th SFG—Camp Dawson West Virginia
  • Support Company and HHC 2nd Bn/19th SFG—Kenova West Virginia


  1. ^ "19th Special Forces Change of Command - 12-6-13". Utah National Guard Flickr Stream. Retrieved 17 February 2014. 
  2. ^ FM 3-05: Army Special Operations Forces, US Department of the Army, September 2006, archived from the original on 28 May 2008, retrieved 7 June 2008 
  3. ^ "FM 3-05.102 Army Special Forces Intelligence" (PDF). July 2001. Archived from the original on 28 May 2008. Retrieved 7 June 2008. 
  4. ^ Joint Chiefs of Staff (1993), Joint Publication 3-05.5: Special Operations Targeting and Mission Planning Procedures, retrieved 13 November 2007 

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