Fort McCoy News May 11, 2018

This month in Fort McCoy history

75 years ago — May 3, 1943

The Women's Army Auxiliary Corps (WAAC) Detachment of 1620 Service Unit, the first WAAC unit on post, was activated May 3, 1943, at Camp McCoy.

The order of activation was published just 48 hours after the arrival of the first WAAC member, Lt. Bertha Kuschill. On May 7, 23 others arrived by train from widely scattered stations in the South and Southwest. The commanding officer was expected to arrive during the weekend. The detachment was expected to total about 150.

(Editor's note: The Women's Army Auxiliary Corps was converted to active-duty status in July 1943, when it became known as the Women's Army Corps, or WAC.)

71 Years Ago — May 17, 1947

Camp McCoy streams were opened to the civilian population for fishing May 17, 1947, for the first time since the war. An estimated 1,500 fishermen came out for the season opening, despite it being a rainy day. A total of 2,169 fishing permits had been issued by May 20 to residents of Tomah, Sparta, and La Crosse, as well as Soldiers and civilians employed at Camp McCoy.

54 Years Ago — May 31, 1964

More than 1,600 Army Reserve Soldiers from Wisconsin, Illinois, Kansas, Iowa, Michigan, and Indiana arrived at Camp McCoy on May 31, 1964, kicking off the annual summer training season. The arrival of the troops more than doubled the post's population, which totaled about 1,400 Soldiers and civilian employees. More were expected to arrive in the following weeks.

45 Years Ago — May 1973

Charlie Company of the 367th Engineer Battalion of Duluth, Minn., rebuilt a stretch of sidewalk from building 102 to 104 during their two-week annual training. The work was part of a number of troop projects planned by the 416th Engineer Command of Chicago. Other projects included building renovations; road maintenance; and construction of a prisoner-of-war compound for training, tank ranges, and the beach at Squaw Lake. (Squaw Lake was renamed Suukjak Sep Lake in 2016.)

20 Years Ago — May 1998

Troop Medical Clinics No. 1 and No. 2 combined into one location, building 2669, in May 1998.

Prior to 1998, a medical section was brought to Fort McCoy to serve Reservists in Troop Medical Clinic No. 2 during heavier training times in the summer. The combined clinic was open year-round and served both active-duty and Reserve Soldiers, as well as active-duty Soldiers' Family members.

   (Article prepared by Public Affairs staff from The Real McCoy and Triad archives.)