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1970s thru 1990s

Regular Army Pathfinder Units

3rd Aviation Bn 3rd Infantry Div Pathfinder Det Germany

5th Infantry Pathfinder Det. 53rd Aviation Bn Fort Rucker, AL 1963-1975

6th Cavalry Bde Pathfinder Det. Fort Hood, TX 1975-1989

8th Infantry Division Pathfinder Det. Germany

11th Pathfinder Platoon, 11th Aviation Group Dolan Barracks, Schwabisch Hall Germany

12th Pathfinder Platoon, 12th Aviation Group Wiesbaden Air Base Germany

17th Aviation Brigade/Group Pathfinder Platoon Korea

2-31st Infantry (2nd Battle group) Co A and 5-31st Infantry Pathfinder Team Fort Rucker, AL 1960-1963

82nd Aviation Airborne Pathfinder Platoon,  Fort Bragg, NC

2nd Squadron 17th Cav, 101st Airborne Pathfinder Det. Fort Campbell, KY

101st Airborne Pathfinder Platoon/Company Fort Campbell, KY

F Co 6th Bn-101st Aviation Regiment Pathfinder Company Fort Campbell, KY

187th Pathfinder Company Fort Campbell, KY and Fort Benning, GA

188th Pathfinder Detachment Fort Campbell, KY (unconfirmed)

222nd Aviation Bn Pathfinder Det Fort Wainwright, Alaska

267th Combat Aviation Bn Pathfinder Det. Fort Stewart, GA

503rd Aviation Bn Pathfinder Det. Hanau Germany (unconfirmed)

Co C 509th PIR (Pathfinder/Airborne), 1st Aviation Brigade Fort Rucker, AL 1975-1993

Co A 511th PIR (Pathfinder/Airborne), 1st Aviation Brigade Fort Rucker, AL 1993-1995

US Army Japan Pathfinder Detachment (unconfirmed)

As of 2018 the U.S. Army has no Pathfinder units.

National Guard Pathfinders

28th Infantry Detachment (Pathfinder), 28th Avn Bn 28th Inf Div, PA ARNG Fort Indiantown Gap, PA

76th Infantry Detachment (Pathfinder), 40th Inf Div, CA ARNG Stockton, CA

77th Infantry Detachment (Pathfinder), 73rd Inf Bde, OH ARNG Worthington/Columbus, OH 

667th Infantry Detachment (Pathfinder), VI ARNG Saint Thomas, Virgin Islands

1136th Infantry Detachment (Pathfinder), TX ARNG Austin, TX


US Army Reserve Pathfinders

5th Pathfinder Platoon USAR Fort Meade, MD

26th Infantry Pathfinder Platoon USAR Wichita, KS

27th Infantry Pathfinder Platoon USAR Grand Prairie, TX

54th Infantry Pathfinder Platoon USAR Wenatchee,WA

79th Infantry Pathfinder Platoon USAR Douglas, UT

All ARNG and USAR Pathfinder units were inactivated in the 1990s

C Co 509th Pathfinders Ft Rucker, AL 

1989 and 1990 Leapfest Parachute competition champions

101st Pathfinders

187th Pathfinder Det Fort Benning, GA

Photos courtesy Ray Wilkins and Page Whatley

17th Aviation Group/Brigade Pfdr Plt Korea

11th Avn Group Pfdr Plt

Photos Courtesy Allen Raiford, Steve Eng, Brian Suchman

27th Inf Pfdr Plt USAR
Photos courtesy Robert Fogarty II

5th Inf Pfdr Plt USAR

Photos courtesy Bryan Greaves, Doc Roberts

26th Inf Pfdr Plt USAR

Courtesy Jak Keller

82nd Airborne Pathfinder Platoon

12th Aviation Group Pathfinder Platoon

77th Inf Pfdr Det OH ARNG


Five men from the 73d Brigade's elite 77th Pathfinder Detachment, headquartered in Columbus, attended the 101st Air Assault School with Army Reservists and R.O.T.C. cadets.


The Buckeye Guard

Pathfinders 'Show Their Stuff'


Staff Writer

Five members of the Ohio Army Guard's elite 77th Pathfinder Detachment got a chance to "show their stuff" during Annual Training at Ft. Campbell recently by attending the tough Airborne Air Assault School.

The Assault Course is seven and one half days long and is run by active Army NCO's. Officers are not recognized on the school's grounds and "cadets" assume all chain of command positions.

CPL Debra Nightingale, an active Army instructor with the school (and the first female instructor) explains "A student must first be recommended by his commander in order to attend Air Assault School and, the student must be able to pass the rigorous Airborne physical fitness test too."

The Assault Course consists of classroom instruction; a confidence course (anyone failing to negotiate two obstacles is automatically dropped from the course); and a 10.9 mile road march. The road march is conducted in full battle dress including helmet, rifle and pack, and must be completed in under two hours, twenty minutes, according to the corporal.

In addition to the rough physical training, cadets are also required to learn hand and arm signals for helicopter ground operation s, and how to properly guide and move aircraft at a landing zone.

CPL Nightingale, and the other Air Assault instructors are proud of the fact they " don't cut any slack" for the cadets. The training is no-nonsense and requires a student to " pay attention to detail." "The confidence course teaches both self-confidence and trust in your equipment,"

emphasized Nightingale. Women may attend the course; but they are expected to do everything a male cadet does. And that includes male push-ups and the grueling road march .

CPL Nightingale, and the rest of the Assault School staff, view most National Guard troops as " long-haired and out of shape". They also feel most Guard members have " poor attitudes"; but they were " impressed" with the five Ohio Guardsmen attending the school. The Ohio Guardsmen had high praise  for the Air Assault school and its staff too.

Members of the 77th Pathfinder Detachment attending the school included : PFC Rick Wamsley, PFC James Snabl, PFC Mark Arnold, PFC John LaRue, and PFC Steven Bank. Most are attending college under the ONG Scholarship Program.

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