Skip to comments.Army takes step toward closing Camp Red Cloud with inactivation ceremony
Posted on 06/22/2018 3:46:34 AM PDT by 2ndDivisionVet
CAMP RED CLOUD, South Korea Soldiers stood in formation as the garrisons colors were cased Thursday in a ceremony officials said marked an important step toward closing this Korean War-era base and reducing the U.S. footprint north of Seoul.
The inactivation of Camp Red Cloud, which remains home to the 2nd Infantry Division, was a largely administrative move aimed at consolidating resources as the Army steps up much-delayed plans to move most forces to its new hub in the southern half of the country.
But Col. Brandon Newton, who served for the past two years as the final garrison commander of the area that includes Red Cloud and Camp Casey, stressed the process was well underway.
The details of the way that we return bases are more complex than just the casing of the colors, he said in an interview after the ceremony on the parade ground. Were certainly on the lead edge of what I would consider the vacating of Camp Red Cloud. Vacating and closing a camp is about a years process.
The base in the town of Uijeongbu, which was home to the real-life unit that inspired the popular TV show M.A.S.H., was named in 1957 in honor of Medal of Honor recipient Cpl. Mitchell Red Cloud Jr., who was killed during a Chinese assault in the first year of the 1950-53 Korean War.
Red Cloud where soldiers still live in aging Quonset huts has long been an anchor in a web of bases and outposts near the front lines with North Korea.
It has undergone many changes in the past, transforming from a hardship duty station to one fit for families with a school and childcare and more recently back to an unaccompanied post.
The 2ID headquarters will remain at Camp Red Cloud for the foreseeable future while its new headquarters and apartment-style barracks are completed on Humphreys, officials said, reluctant to give a timeline after many delays.
Several units already have made the move. The military also is shutting down Camp Stanley, although the larger Camp Casey will remain open as the home to the 210th Field Artillery Brigade and other residual forces.
We are still occupying and have an operational requirement for Camp Casey, Newton said.
Camp Stanley is in what I would call the vacate process right now, he added. We are still removing furniture, turning off power, turning off water. We are responsibly removing many of the heating oil from the tanks.
The U.S. military has long grouped its bases in South Korea into four areas for administrative purposes but is consolidating the commands as the relocation gains momentum.
Camp Red Cloud will fall under a newly designated U.S. Army Garrison Yongsan-Casey, which will be commanded by Col. Monica Washington beginning Friday when she takes over from the current Yongsan commander Col. Scott Peterson.
Newton, who will move with his family to Denver to be the regional defense coordinating officer for FEMA, said the restructuring was necessary to shift more personnel to Camp Humphreys, which is in the rural Pyeongtaek area about 40 miles south of the capital.
The last two years have been marked by major change coupled with the tumultuous, to say the least, operational environment, he said in remarks to military officials and local dignitaries in the audience. There are still tough days ahead to continue to move units and reduce the work force.
He also said Camp Jackson and Camp Mobile were ready to be handed over to the South Korean government but no date has been set.
Christine Altendorf, the director of Installation Management Command for the Pacific, praised Newton for leading the garrison during a time of transition.
As we look back on this relatively brief time period of his command, we marvel at the staggering pace he set as more than 8,500 personnel along with equipment vacated, consolidated and moved from here to U.S. Army Garrison Humphreys, she said.
Even with the ongoing transformation effort Col. Newton maintained a commitment to the quality of life of every single person here, replacing ineffective water treatment facilities, enhancing barracks and focusing on energy conservation and efficiency, she said.
Two Uijeongbu officials, who spoke only on condition of anonymity, said they had heard Camp Red Cloud would be closed by the end of the year. City officials were tentatively planning to develop the land as a security-themed tourist complex but were waiting to see how much environmental cleanup would be needed, they said.
My time over there was at Camp Giant, Warrior Base and 4P3. Met alot of amazing people there as well as other G I’s.
Thank you once again for your service.
Will this historic base closing be considered newsworthy by the propaganda media?
Cp Dodge DCO/MW 552nd Co 41st Sig Bn 1st Sig Bde 78-79. One thing I remember about CRC was the food we got in the ville wraped in computer printouts from the base.
“...the food we got in the ville wraped in computer printouts from the base.”
South Koreans are the world’s foremost recyclers, OPSEC be damned!! I’ve been told they collect brass from the ranges one day and it’s offered as a commemorative unit insignia ashtray in the village the next day.
I spent a year at Camp Casey and Red Cloud was a nice trip every now and then. Seoul was better by far. Seoul was only 35 miles or so from Casey, but it was a good 2 hour trip, Korean roads and traffic being insane.
One rule of the road in Korea, imho: bigger vehicle has right of way.
Big news, didnt realize this was happening.
I can only imagine a “ security theme tourist park”
Like Frontier Land but with a DMZ, guards, machine guns, artillery, rocket launchers and CW gear
I was stationed in Uijeongbu in 1958 with “D” Company 51st Signal Battalion I corps. It appears that a lot has changed since then.
I was stationed at Camp Coiner.
Turn signal on a bus meant it was moving over. Not waiting for a break in traffic.
Late 1966-early 1968 55th MP Co. General’s Guard, and Vice. Great duty. Enjoyed the lovely people of S. Korea. Enjoyed working with great American’s at a great facility as was Camp Red Cloud.
Red Cloud Px had the best glazed doughnuts, and fried chicken ever.
In my day we had the “Smuggler” burger which was somewhere between a Big Mac and a Whopper. Was on separate rations due to my weird hours so I ate a lot of fried chicken and personal sized pizza at the NCO Club. Remember a big bag of fried shrimp out in the ville for next to nothing?
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.