17th Field Artillery Brigade (United States)

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17th Field Artillery Brigade
17th Field Artillery Brigade shoulder sleeve insignia
Active 19 August 1918—8 February 1919
19 January 1943—15 November 1945
22 January 1951—21 June 1975
21 September 1978—Present.
Country  United States
Allegiance Regular Army
Branch Field Artillery
Type Brigade
Part of I Corps
Garrison/HQ Joint Base Lewis-McChord
Nickname(s) Thunderbolt Brigade
Motto(s) "Thunderbolt!"
Commander Colonel Andrew Gainey
Command Sergeant Major Command Sergeant Major Freddie Barbary
Distinctive Unit Insignia 17 FA Bde DUI.jpg

The 17th Field Artillery Brigade, "America's Premier HIMARS Brigade", is an artillery brigade in the United States Army. It is currently based in Joint Base Lewis McChord Washington as Force Fires Headquarters for I Corps.


The 17th Field Artillery Brigade began as the 17th Field Artillery Brigade part of the 17th Division at Camp Bowie, Texas on July 31st, 1918. It demobilized in February 1919 after World War I.

The 17th Field Artillery Brigade activated again at Fort Sill January 1943. During World War II the 17th Field Artillery Brigade participated in Normandy, Northern France, Rhineland, Ardennes-Alsace, and Central Europe.

  • Staged at Camp Myles Standish from 20 February 1944.
  • Departed Boston, Massachusetts Port of Embarkation on February 28th, 1944.
  • Arrived in England on March 8th, 1944.
  • Landed in France on June 12th, 1944 and entered the Normandy campaign.
  • Normandy Campaign concluded on July 24th, 1944.
  • Northern France campaign started July 1944.
  • Crossed into Belgium on 5 September 1944.
  • Northern France campaign concluded on 14 September 1944.
  • Entered Germany on 15 September 1944 and started Rhineland campaign.
  • Returned to Belgium on 1 October 1944.
  • Reentered Germany on 1 November 1944.
  • Returned to Belgium on 23 December 1944 to participate in the Ardennes-Alsace campaign.
  • Reentered Germany on 4 February 1945, and resumed Rhineland campaign.
  • Rhineland Campaign concluded on 21 March 1945.
  • Central Europe campaign starts 22 March 1945.
  • Central Europe campaign concluded 11 May 1945, and unit prepares to be withdrawn from ETO, and deployment to PTO.
  • Unit withdrawn from Germany, and arrived Hampton Roads Port of Embarkation to prepare for invasion of Japan on 9 July 1945
  • Unit moved to Camp San Luis Obispo, California on 15 July 1945 to train and re-equip for Pacific Theater.
  • Unit at Camp San Luis Obispo on VJ Day.
  • Unit moved to Fort Ord, California for demobilization on 20 September 1945.

The 17th Field Artillery Brigade moved to Augsburg Germany on 20 September 1978 and was the only Nuclear Capable Field Artillery unit in Germany. The unit went on to Fort Lewis after assignment in the middle east. Additionally, The 17th was the only Field Artillery Unit deployed from the US Army to Iraq.

The 17th Field Artillery deployed to Iraq from Augsburg in 2003 and again in 2005. In 2007 the 17th Field Artillery Brigade moved to Fort Lewis, Washington a renamed 17th Fires Brigade.

The 17th Fires Brigade deployed to the Basra Province in the summer of 2009.

The 1st Battalion, 377th Field Artillery Regiment was officially inactivated February 2014.

For the purpose of standardizing, the 17th Fires Brigade was officially renamed 17th Field Artillery Brigade on 19 February 2014.

Lineage & Honors[edit]


  • Constituted 31 July 1918 in the Regular Army as Headquarters, 17th Field Artillery Brigade, and assigned to the 17th Division
  • Organized 19 August 1918 at Camp Bowie, Texas
  • Demobilized 8 February 1919 at Fort Sill, Oklahoma
  • Reconstituted 12 October 1936 in the Regular Army; concurrently consolidated with Headquarters and Headquarters Battery, 17th Field Artillery Brigade (constituted 1 October 1933 in the Regular Army), and consolidated unit designated as Headquarters and Headquarters Battery, 17th Field Artillery Brigade
  • Activated 19 January 1943 at Fort Sill, Oklahoma
  • Reorganized, redesignated, and joined 13 March 1944 as Headquarters and Headquarters Battery, VII Corps Artillery
  • Inactivated 15 November 1945 at Fort Ord, California
  • Activated 22 January 1951 at Fort Campbell, Kentucky
  • Inactivated 21 June 1975 in Germany
  • Redesignated 21 March 1978 as Headquarters and Headquarters Battery, 17th Field Artillery Brigade
  • Activated 21 September 1978 in Augsburg, Germany
  • Reorganized and redesignated 17 July 2007 as Headquarters and Headquarters Battery, 17th Fires Brigade[1]

Campaign Participation Credit[edit]

  • World War II: Normandy Campaign (with arrowhead); Northern France Campaign; Rhineland Campaign; Ardennes-Alsace Campaign; Central Europe Campaign
  • War on Terrorism: Campaigns to be determined[1]


  • Meritorious Unit Commendation (Army), Streamer embroidered IRAQ 2005–2006[1]

Assigned and Attached Units[edit]

The 17th Field Artillery Brigade is currently composed of:


External links[edit]

 This article incorporates public domain material from the United States Army Center of Military History website http://www.history.army.mil/html/forcestruc/lineages/branches/fa/0017firebrig.htm.