F/51st Long Range Patrol (Airborne) Infantry, the immediate precursor to F/51st LRS, was inactivated in Vietnam in December 1968. In 1986, F/51st Infantry was reactivated in Germany as a long range surveillance detachment unit in the XVIII Airborne Corps, and conducted combat operations during the Gulf War. The unit was inactivated in November 1991 and then reactivated in 1995 as Company F, 51st Long Range Surveillance (LRS) and assigned to the 519th Military Intelligence Battalion (Tactical Exploitation) (Airborne), a sub-unit of the 525th Military Intelligence Brigade at Fort Bragg, North Carolina, to provide the XVIII Airborne Corps with long range surveillance capability. Permanent Orders 41-1, dated 10 Feb 1995, were issued pertaining to that activation. In that same month, F/51st LRS was awarded the Expert Infantry Streamer. After September 11, 2001, F/51 LRS was deployed to both Afghanistan and Iraq. The unit suffered casualties. Company F, 51st Infantry (Long Range Surveillance) (Airborne) unit trained in many different methods of insertion and extraction, by land, air, and sea. They did not rely primarily on the helicopter as F/51st LRP did in Vietnam. The LRS units had new insertion methods available to them such as HALO (High Altitude/Low Opening) and HAHO (High Altitude/High Opening) parachute jumps. They could insert light teams by small boats cast off from warships at sea. They could insert by helicopter and fixed-wing aircraft, and even on foot, if necessary. Trained in scuba diving, free falling, and motorcycles, these men did surveillance on the enemy from every different angle, night or day. Where the unit differed from their Vietnam-era counterpart, F51st LRP, is that they didn’t engage the enemy as a result of surveillance. They operated in small teams whose mission was to observe and gather intelligence, but not to deliberately enter into combat with the enemy. They were not well enough armed, or supported by rear guard, to be effective in a combat situation against a numerically superior enemy. Their mission was to go deep into enemy territory and report what the enemy was doing, then disappear with the enemy being none the wiser.About 2007, during the reconfiguration of the 525th MI Brigade to a Battlefield Surveillance Brigade (BfSB), Company F (LRS), 51st Infantry was reflagged as Troop C (LRS), 1st Squadron, 38th Cavalry Regiment(1-38th CAV) and was removed from the control of the 519th MI BN and reassigned to 1-38th CAV, which is another subordinate battalion in the 525th BfSB.See F51 Lineage page for more information.
SHOULDER SLEEVE INSIGNIA(525th Military Intelligence Brigade,aka The LIghtning Brigade)Description: On a rectangle arched at the bottom with a 1/8 inch yellow border, 2 1/2 inches in width and 3 inches in height overall, below a white and black checkered chief consisting of two rows of five squares each, a field divided from upper left to lower right with silver gray above oriental blue separated by a yellow lightning flash with point at lower right. A black arc tab 11/16 inch in width, 2 1/2 inches in length containing the inscription "AIRBORNE" 5/16 inch in height in yellow letters.
Distinctive Unit Insignia—519th Military Intelligence Battalion.Description: A Gold color metal and enamel device 1 1/8 inches (2.86 cm) in height overall consisting of a shield blazoned: Or, in base a sphinx facing to dexter couchant Azure, detailed of the first in front of an open book of the last, fimbriated of the second, its upper edge at fess point in front of a globe overall of the like, gridlined of the field. Attached below the shield a Gold scroll inscribed "STRENGTH THRU INTELLIGENCE" in Blue letters. Symbolism: Teal blue and golden yellow, the colors used for branch unassigned, were the former colors for Army Intelligence organizations. The sphinx, adapted from the Army Intelligence Reserve branch insignia, is used again to symbolize Army Intelligence. Resting against the terrestrial globe is an open book representing the knowledge made available through mastery of the languages of the world. The globe itself indicates the worldwide scope of the Battalion's research activities. Background: The distinctive unit insignia was approved on 20 May 1960. It was amended to correct the description of the design on 10 March 1964.The 519th Military Intelligence Battalion (Tactical Exploitation) (Airborne) participated in combat operations in Grenada (Operation Urgent Fury), Panama (Operation Just Cause), and in the Kuwaiti Theater of Operations (Operation Desert Shield). The 519th Military Intelligence Battalion, as a subordinate unit of the 525th Military Intelligence Brigade, provides the highest quality ground-based Signals Intelligence, Human Intelligence, and Counterintelligence support to the XVIII Airborne Corps and Corps Major Support Commands. Currently, the battalion has elements deployed in support of Operations in Europe, Southwest Asia, the Caribbean, and the Pacific and remains ready to deploy world-wide in a moments notice. F Company 51st Infantry Long Range Surveillance Company was assigned to the battalion to provide the Corps with long range surveillance capability.Distinctive Unit Insignia—specific to 51st InfantryDescription: A gold metal and enamel device 1 5/32 inches (2.94cm) in height overall consisting of a shield blazoned: Azure, a bend Or. Attached below the shield a blue motto scroll inscribed "I SERVE" in gold letters.Symbolism: The shield is blue for Infantry, with the bend taken from the coat of arms of Alsace.Background: The distinctive unit insignia was originally approved for the 51st Regiment Infantry on 24 Jan 1930; amended on 11 May 1937; redesignated for the 51st Infantry (Armored) on 23 Sep 1941; redesignated for the 51st Armored Infantry Regiment on 23 Apr 1942; redesignated for the 51st Armored Infantry Battalion on 6 Nov 1943; redesignated for the 51st Constabulary Squadron on 4 Dec 1946; redesignated for the 51st Armored Infantry Battalion on 22 Jun 1954 and redesignated for the 51st Infantry on 28 Jan 1958.
Symbolism: Oriental blue and silver gray are the colors traditionally associated with Military Intelligence. The lightning flash refers to the communication and electronic warfare functions of the unit. The checkered area alludes to the overt and covert aspects of the Military Intelligence mission with the black and white colors referring to the constant vigilance day and night.Background: The insignia was approved on 30 Jul 1985.