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The 1st Air Cavalry Division (First Team) is a well decorated and highly skilled air assault infantry formation of the UNSC Army, assigned to the . First established in 2494, the organization can link their lineage back to the 1st Cavalry Division of the US Army.
The division served as a rapid response formation of the UNSC Army during the Human-Covenant War, serving as one of the most elite units of the UNSC Defense Force at the time. It gained notoriety for it's actions during the Sahamandrevo II Campaign, Fall of Reach, and Battle of Earth.
Currently, the 1st AirCav consists of over 17,000 soldiers divided into four strategically located combat brigades.
Inner Colony Wars
On August 5, 2494, the 5th Cavalry Brigade was reactivated by the Army Forces Command and reformed into the 1st Air Cavalry Division. An additional 10,500 troops were transferred into the unit, adding to the 3,200 original soldiers at the time. The division was then reorganized into four subordinate brigade teams as a part of the Army's Operation: VENGEFUL, a planned counter-offensive against the insurgents of the People's Occupation Government. However, following the assassination Jerald Mulkey Andor during Operation: KALEIDOSCOPE the mission was called off, with remaining insurrectionist activity being dealt with by Special Operations Aviation Reconnaissance.
Two years later the 1st Cavalry launched Operation Psalms, deploying a force of over 6,000 soldiers in the Theta Ursae Majoris System. The soldiers fought alongside the colony's Civilian Security Forces, launching several counter-terrorism and psychological warfare operations against opposing forces. Despite High Command's original orders, the unit would patrol Theta Ursae for three more years, before the Unified Earth Government pulled them out in the face of lowering civilian approval ratings.
The 7th Air Cavalry Regiment would then participate in the Evacuation of New Alexandria, providing aerial support to Army and Marine infantry forces, as well as defending ships participating in the initial evacuation. After fighting in the sky for nearly four days, they were directed by Army colonel Urban Holland to deploy two battalions of infantry across New Alexandria. In attempt to break the Covenant's siege of the city, the Cavalry's 2nd Infantry Battalion fought desperately alongside the Army's Romeo Company and Evacuation Team 7 for the control of Traxus Tower. Meanwhile, the 14th Infantry Battalion was deployed to Caracalla Park with orders to retake the UNSC missile batteries around the park and finish the city's evacuation. Although initially there was only minor Covenant opposotion (thanks largely in part to the fact that other UNSC forces had occupied and fought in the park), the battalion suffered heavy causalities and was forced to remain alongside the coastline. Afterward, cavalryman Sergeant Major Richard Duvall directed the evacuation from this point.
Soon after, SPARTAN-B312 made her way to Traxus Tower and met up with the remaining members of the 2nd Battalion. After gathering the civilian and military survivors, they fought for control of the tower's elevator, requiring transportation for the evacuation process. However after several victorious firefights, the soldiers were informed by Marine Gunnery Sergeant Pete Stacker that the rooftop landing pad had been compromised and that remaining evacuation efforts in the tower were being rerouted to the executive landing pad.
After nearly an hour of fighting, Noble Six and the Bullfrogs retook the landing pad and met up with the 2nd Battalion. Once the soldiers reached the pad, they made sure the remaining civilians were evacuated by Marine Pelicans. Once the civilians were loaded on, the soldiers made their way back to their Falcons and assisted both Marine and Army ground teams, as well as government evacuation vessels.
The 1st Air Cavalry Division is modeled after their United States counterparts and are divided into four brigade combat teams that consist of subordinate support battalions. Each brigade consists of numerous military formations that specialize in various aspects such as infantry, aviation, engineering and armor. Below is the current force structure:
- Headquarters and Headquarters Company
- Alpha Company, 1st Cavalry Division
- Bravo Company, 1st Cavalry Division
- Charlie Company, 1st Cavalry Division
- Gamma Troop (GUARDIAN detachment)
- Horse Cavalry Detachment, 1st Cavalry Division
- 1st Brigade Combat Team
- 1st Squadron, 7th Air Cavalry
- 3rd Battalion, 8th Cavalry
- 3rd Battalion, 12th Cavalry
- 1st Battalion, 132nd Field Artillery
- 32nd Brigade Support Battalion