Preserving a Legacy: The History of US Army Commandos and the Long Range Reconnaissance Association
The Long Range Reconnaissance Association (LRRA) stands as a testament to the courage and dedication of those who have served in Long Range Patrol (LRP), Long Range Reconnaissance Patrols (LRRPs), or Long Range Surveillance (LRS) Detachments or Companies, as well as lettered 75th Infantry Regiment (Ranger) Companies. This organization has taken on the noble mission of preserving the legacy of these elite units, their missions, and their heritage. Through the establishment of memorials and fostering connections among veterans, the LRRA ensures that the history of these distinguished commandos will never be lost. This article delves into the historical significance of these units and encourages individuals to join the LRRA and reconnect with their comrades.
The Birth of Long-Range Reconnaissance Patrols
The concept of long-range reconnaissance patrols traces its roots back to the French and Indian War in the 18th century when Major Robert Rogers and his Rangers conducted daring long-range attacks against the French and their Indian allies. Rogers' techniques and standing orders became the foundation for future long-range reconnaissance patrol units in the United States Army.
The Legacy of Vietnam
During the Vietnam War, the US Army formed Long Range Reconnaissance Patrol units, which were often composed of graduates from the U.S. Army's 5th Special Forces Recondo School in Nha Trang. These units played a critical role in providing vital intelligence on enemy composition and disposition, often making contact with the enemy during their perilous patrols.
As the Vietnam War came to an end, the LRRPs were rebranded as Ranger companies of the 75th Infantry (Ranger) Regiment. Alpha and Bravo companies, 75th Infantry (Ranger), remained the only Ranger units on active duty. Many of the Vietnam Rangers from these companies formed the nucleus of the newly established 1st and 2nd Battalions (Ranger), 75th Infantry in 1974, which eventually evolved into the esteemed 75th Ranger Regiment we know today.
Long-Range Reconnaissance Association and Memorials
The Long Range Reconnaissance Association (LRRA) was founded with the aim of uniting all long-range reconnaissance Soldiers, regardless of their lineage, and ensuring that the importance of Rangering and long-range patrol work is recognized. This inclusive organization brings together veterans and active-duty soldiers who were part of the Long Range Reconnaissance Patrol (LRRP), Long Range Patrol (LRP), and Long Range Surveillance (LRS) teams.
The LRRA has dedicated itself to preserving the memory of these units by purchasing and placing memorials in various locations. Among these memorials are the Memorial Benches, which have been placed at significant sites like the NATIONAL RANGER MEMORIAL at Ft. Moore, GA, the NATIONAL INFANTRY MUSEUM in Columbus, GA, and the birthplace of the LRRA in Branson, MO. In addition, a paver honoring LRRP, LRP, and LRS Soldiers was placed at the ARMY HISTORY MUSEUM near Ft. Belvoir, VA, and recently, more pavers have been placed at the National Infantry Museum, located next to Ft Moore, GA.
Joining the LRRA
The LRRA encourages all those who have served in or been assigned to LRP, LRRP, or LRS units, as well as lettered 75th Infantry Regiment (Ranger) Companies, to join their ranks and reconnect with their fellow brothers in arms. By becoming a member of the LRRA, individuals can actively support efforts to ensure the rich history, legacy, and heritage of these units are preserved for future generations.
If you are interested in becoming a part of this extraordinary association, visit lrra2015.org for more information and to join the LRRA community.
The Long Range Reconnaissance Association stands as a testament to the valor and sacrifice of those who have served in Long Range Patrol (LRP), Long Range Reconnaissance Patrols (LRRPs), or Long Range Surveillance (LRS) units. Through their dedication to preserving the legacy of these elite commandos and the establishment of memorials at significant sites, the LRRA ensures that the history of these units remains alive. By joining the LRRA, individuals can reconnect with their fellow comrades and actively contribute to safeguarding the remarkable heritage of these extraordinary warriors. Let us honor the past and present long-range reconnaissance Soldiers by embracing the mission of the LRRA and ensuring that their legacy lives on for generations to come.