LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - A senior-level U.S. Army command with more than 100 years of history was reactivated at Fort Knox during a ceremony on Friday.
V Corps was last active in Wiesbaden, Germany, in 2013 and is one of four of the Army’s corps headquarters. V Corps will be comprised of more than 600 soldiers with a mission to support the United States' interests in Europe.
“This foot soldier under (General George) Patton’s army predicted the Russians were going to be a big problem,” Sen. Mitch McConnell said, speaking about his father who was a foot soldier in World War II. “But Russian behavior these days doesn’t look all that different. That’s why the mission in Europe remains extremely important.”
V Corps may be new to Fort Knox, but it has a long history in the Army. First established in 1918, V Corps served in World War I, stormed the beaches of Normandy during World War II, then moved on to the Cold War, the Balkans, and most recently to the Middle East.
“When the colors were cased in 2013, all of the people took off the patch and were dispersed into other Army units, so literally we’re standing it up from scratch,” Lt. General John Kolasheski said.
Kolasheski began his Army career at Fort Knox 31 years ago and is now tasked with helping to rebuild V Corps.
“Bringing it on gives the Army just so much more capability as it represents the four three-star corps headquarters on the active rolls,” Kolasheski said.
In addition, Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear announced V Corps will have a big impact on the local economy, estimated to bring around $58 million in payroll and another $96 million in consumer spending.
“It will be a great thing for multiple aspects, sure, economic, but strategically for the post, and also just to have all those soldiers and their families,” Retired General Jim Iacocca, who leads the Knox Regional Development Alliance, said.
V Corps soldiers will spend a full year at Fort Knox while Kolasheski builds up the command with soldiers, equipment and training, in addition to studying the history and dynamics of Europe. The soldiers' final workout for the Warfighter exercise has been set for October 2021.