There was a period in the history of the US Army when morale meant more than adherence to the uniform regulations. From 1970-1980, in my experience, there were more unauthorized pocket patches than there were maneuver battalions.
There were recondo patches, patches that identified the wearer as an Imjin Scout (in Korea) and patches that signified membership in an armor or cavalry organization. I wore pocket patches that identified me as a member of the Blackhawks (1st Cavalry), Troop D, 5th Cavalry (USAR) and 1st Battalion, 110th Armor(ARmy National Guard). In the Second Cavalry, we had a tab on our utility caps that said “BORDER” indicating our role patrolling the Czech and Internal German Border. We also wore the insignia of allied units on our class A‘s. In the ‘80’s, 3/2 ACR wore a tabard bearing the insignia of Panzer Battalion 123, our partnership unit.There were also patches that indicated overseas service of reserve component organizations.
All of this was unauthorized as hell, as were the berets worn during the period. Once the army became a cohesive organization again, the gew-gaws went away. Most were authorized by local commanders and had short lives.
It also seems to me that master gunners of tank and cavalry units can wear their rating on fatigues, but not on Class A's.
James B. Ronan II
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