mortar rounds trigger holocaust
Sent by Jerry Kuklok
15TH MEDICAL BATTALION FLAG DONATED BY FAMILY OF COL EDWARD G. BRADSHAW
By Terry A. McCarl, Historian, 15th Medical Battalion Association
(This was read by John Tabor at the 15th Medical Battalion Association
Reunion in Kokomo, IN on 12 June 2021.)
You may have noticed that at
this reunion, we have two 15th Medical Battalion flags on display. The
"brownish-colored" flag (referred to hereafter as the "old flag") is the one
our Association purchased in 2011. The reddish-colored flag (referred to
hereafter as the "new flag") was donated to our Association by the family of
the late COL Edward G. Bradshaw who passed away on 14 September 2020 in
Boerne, TX (San Antonio area) at the age of 78.
COL Edward G. Bradshaw
COL Bradshaw had two assignments with the 1st Cavalry Division; the first
being a Platoon Leader in B Co., 2nd Battalion, 8th Cavalry Regiment in
Vietnam in 1965, and the second as the last Commander of the 15th Medical
Battalion when it was deactivated at Fort Hood, TX in 1985. At a final
ceremony in 1985, the 15th Medical Battalion presented the flag to COL
Bradshaw as a keepsake, which he treasured.
When he passed away, his
family decided that the flag should be returned to a "military home." They
contacted a family friend living in San Antonio, MAJ (Ret.) James Ramsey,
who had served as a Medevac Flight Medic with 15th Medical Battalion in
Vietnam 1968-1969. He suggested that the flag be offered to the 15th Medical
In January of 2021, one of our members, COL
(Ret, NMNG) James McKay (who also served as a Medevac Flight Medic
1968-1969), with whom I had been in contact regarding 15th Medical Battalion
history, notified me that his friend, James Ramsey had been asked by the
Bradshaw family to offer the flag to the 15th Medical Battalion Association.
This offer was gratefully accepted, and James Ramsey sent it to 15th Med
Battalion Association President Jim Ferguson.
Besides the color, the
only difference between the two flags is that on the old flag, the motto on
the ribbon in the eagle's beak says , "Standing By," whereas the motto on
the new flag is “Service Above Self.” “Standing By” was the original unit
motto when the unit was activated in 1926. In 1976, the unit motto was
changed from "Standing By” to "Service Above Self." The detailed history of
both flags is unknown, but the "Standing By" motto on the old flag suggests
that it was made prior to 1976, and the "Service Above Self" motto on the
new flag suggests that it was made after 1976.
The fate of the
original battalion flag created when the battalion was activated in June of
1926 is unknown, but is believed to have been "misappropriated" at some
point in time.
According to the Dustoff Association, who inducted
COL Bradshaw into the Dustoff Hall of Fame in 2009, following his tour as in
Infantry Officer in 1965., he went through helicopter flight training and
returned to Vietnam for a second tour during which he commanded three
Dustoff Units: the 237th, 68th, and 54th Medical Detachments (Helicopter
He held a total of 11 commands during his nearly 30-year
Army career, the final being the Fort Sam Houston Army Garrison.
Association extends its sincere appreciation to COL Bradshaw's family for
donating this flag, and to MAJ Ramsey, for sending it. Both flags will be
displayed with pride at all future reunions.