Fort Leonard Wood, United States of America
Fort Leonard Wood is an army training installation located on Missouri Ozarks near St. Robert city in the US. The army post is an inter-service training centre that trains soldiers, airmen, marines, sailors and international students. The post was created in 1940 to train US Army infantry troops. The installation is spread over 62,911 acres of land.
The post is located in the heart of the Ozarks, which is considered as an ideal place to work and train soldiers. The terrain in the Ozark Mountains is suitable for military training because it is characterised by extreme heat, wet, cold and dry conditions.
In order to find a convenient area for training and expanding the army, military and state officials broke ground for a major training centre at Seventh Corps Area on 3 December 1940. It was named the Seventh Corps Area Training Centre. In 1941, the War Department redesignated the training centre Fort Leonard Wood.
Fort Leonard Wood was comprised of 1,600 buildings spread in a floor space of about five million square feet. It was built at a cost of $37m in six months. The post initially trained the sixth infantry division. Later on, the eight, 70th, 75th and 97th army divisions were also trained at the installation.
Fort Leonard Wood was initially meant to train infantry troops, but in 1941 it became the Engineer Replacement Training Centre. In August 1950, the US Army announced it was investing $60m to make Fort Leonard Wood a sophisticated training centre to provide all engineer training.
As part of base realignment and closure, the Alabama army base was closed and the US Army Military Police Corps and Chemical Corps schools were shifted to Fort Leonard Wood in 2000. During the same year, the US Army Manoeuvre Support Centre was formed at the post. It was redesignated the US Army Manoeuvre Support Centre of Excellence in 2009.
Fort Leonard Wood was used for training purposes then for forces command. During World War II, more than 30,000 troops passed through the post. It was also used as an engineer-replacement training post during the war. During the first Gulf War period, the 5th Engineer Battalion was stationed at the post.
At the time of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars, the 193rd Brigade Support Battalion, 92nd Military Police Battalion and 94th Signal Company came to Fort Leonard Wood as part of 4th Manoeuvre Enhancement Brigade (MEB) forces command unit.
Fort Leonard Wood garrison command includes US Army Engineer, Military Police and Chemical Corps Schools, the Third Basic Combat Training Brigade, and Joint Training Detachments from the US Marine Corps, Navy and Air Force, and 43rd Adjutant General Battalion. The post is used for training more than 12,400 soldiers daily, and houses more than 11,700 family members, 31,720 retiree family members and six forces command units.
The Maneuver Support Centre of Excellence based at Fort Leonard Wood provides diversified training to army soldiers, and to the US Navy and Air Force, and to Marine, Coast Guard, Army Reserve, National Guard, foreign military, state and local government personnel as well as civilians.
Constructed in 1965, the General Leonard Wood Army Community Hospital (GLWACH) at Fort Leonard Wood offers many healthcare and medical services to the community at the post. The hospital has more than 450,000ft² of clinics and wards space in a six-storey structure and currently maintains a 65-bed capacity.
The military personnel at the post are provided with Dental Activity (DENTAC) mission services, which take care of the US Armed Forces oral healthcare for all active and reserve military units.
Fort Leonard Wood provides premier safety and occupational health services to MANSCEN and the service members based at the post as well as civilian employees and family members.
The housing division at the post provides quality housing facilities and services for all service members stationed at the post. The Housing Services Office provides all the assistance and support to the service members, retirees and civilians in home location and relocation. Under the new Residential Communities Initiative (RCI) housing programme, soldiers at Fort Leonard Wood are provided with new homes and sophisticated community centres.
Fort Leonard Wood Family and Morale, Welfare and Recreation (FMWR) command provides all entrainment and recreation facilities for the soldiers, families, civilians and retirees. The post is also equipped with movie theatres, indoor and outdoor sports centres and holiday recreation destinations.
Fort Leonard Wood garrison also has a Directorate of Human Resources (DHR) Civilian Personnel Advisory Centre (CPAC) and a 41-member official 399th Army Band.
Waynesville Regional Airport, located near Forney Field, provides aviation support to the Fort Leonard Wood community. The airport has a single runway (14/32), air traffic control tower, national airspace system navigational aids, and petroleum, oils and lubricants - aircraft fuelling (POL) services.
The US Army looks after the operation of the airport passenger terminal.