era is coming to an end with the demolition of the last remaining
wooden buildings in Fort McCoy’s 1000 block, which once was home to
the installation’s hospital.
Employees from Gerke Excavating
of Tomah, Wis., a subcontracted firm, tear down buildings in the
former hospital area. Charpie-Solitt of Chicago was the general
contractor for the project. (Photo
by Rob Schuette)
buildings in the area housed a complete hospital, which included
surgical capabilities, during the World War II era.
buildings were part of the new Camp McCoy cantonment area, which was
built in 1942.
1,800-bed station hospital was one of the 15 induction and basic
training centers for Army nurses during World War II. Altogether,
27,330 nurses underwent training throughout the Army, with Camp McCoy
serving as one of the largest sites. A four-week course included 144
hours on military courtesy, discipline, correspondence, security,
self-protection (e.g. gas-mask training), physical fitness, drill,
sanitation, insect control and care of chemical casualties.
the war, the installation was put on inactive status. Camp McCoy,
including the station hospital, was reactivated in 1950 shortly after
the conflict in Korea began.
hospital came to the aid of the civilian community during the polio
epidemic in the early 1950s. During 1952, more than 100 civilian
patients were treated at the Camp McCoy station hospital.
A view of the former hospital
buildings in 1946. The remaining buildings in the area recently
(History Center Archives)
during the Korean Conflict, the hospital had a nursery that brought
352 "civies" into the world in its first year.
addition to three Army nurses working in eight-hour shifts, the
department was staffed by six civilian attendants and several members
of the Women’s Army Corps.
two doctors heading the department provided prenatal care to young
mothers throughout their pregnancy.
next major use of the former hospital area was as the Troop Medical
Clinic (TMC) location, during summer annual training in the 1980s when
medical units conducted annual training.
that wasn’t occurring, the TMC service was offered in the 1400 block
during the summer annual-training season.
TMC facilities moved to the 1600 block with the opening of a new
facility in August 1990. Most recently, the TMC has been located in
the 2600 block.
former hospital buildings were prominently used during Operation
Desert Shield/Storm as a processing center for Soldiers mobilizing and
demobilizing to support the Gulf War in the 1990-91 time frame.
that, the buildings were used to support medical training coordinated
by Regional Training Site-Medical (RTS-Medical). The buildings served
as classrooms, while the DEPMEDS (Deployable Medical System) tents
were used to conduct medical training.
Meyer, RTS-Medical executive officer, said the former hospital
buildings had outlived their purpose to support medical training for
have been acquiring either new or recently renovated facilities to
support our training," Meyer said. "The latest project will
add two structures, which will support a biomedical repair building
(17,000-square-feet) and a classroom facility (12,000-square-feet).
These buildings will offer state-of-the-art systems to support medical
and mobilization training of our Soldiers."
(Compiled from information
in the Fort McCoy History and Heritage booklet; the Nov. 24, 2000
special section of the Fort McCoy Triad Fort McCoy: The Korean War
Years; the Aug. 10, 1990 Triad, and the Fort McCoy Archaeology