Evolution of the Casual Detachments to the 5307th
Download 5307 Roster (Provisional) which includes
name, rank, serial number, battalion, and unit for each Marauder.
The Marauders arrived in India in September or October of 1943. They were initially known as Casual Detachment 1688 and were divided into 3 battalions — A, B, and C. During this period they trained for the upcoming mission, primarily under British control, and were divided into Combat Teams for this training. No formal (in writing) assignments were made to these teams. We have managed to find a typed copy of the personnel of the Green Combat Team, and that is the only one for which we have a true list of the members. Generally, a Battalion was divided into 2 Combat Teams by taking one-half of Headquarters Company, Company A, and one-half of Company B into one team, and the remaining one-half of Headquarters Company and remaining one-half of Company B, and all of Company C for the second Combat Team.
Download “Evolution of Casual Detachments” diagram shown below.
5307 Unit Evolution from Galahad to MARS Task Force. The Marauders were formally organized as the 5307th Composite Regiment (Provisional) on Jan. 1, 1944, and this was almost immediately changed to 5307th Composite Unit (Provisional). They fought in the Combat Team configuration. By April 1, they were so depleted that the combat teams were reorganized into the H Force (1st Bn), M Force (2nd Bn), and K Force (3rd Bn) and each of the Batalions were supplemented by Chinese Forces. The force names (H, M, and K) were derived from the Commanders’ names — H Force was commanded by COL Charles Hunter; M Force by COL George A. McGee, and K Force by COL Henry L. Kinnison. By June 1, the Marauders were severely depleted by disease, wounds, and malnutrition, and an influx of over 2000 men supplementing the original 3000 arrived. In addition, the 209th Engr Bn, the 236th Engr Bn, and the 879th Engr Bn was also added. At this point, the operation became popularly known as “New Galahad” although the operation was always officially known as “Galahad”.
About the Combat Team Roster. While training with the British forces under General Orde Wingate, the Marauders were divided into combat teams. Generally, each Battalion was divided pretty close to down the middle — about half of Headquarters Company, Company A, and about half of Company B forming one combat team. The second then was formed from the remaining portions of Headquarters Company and Company B, and most, if not all, of Company C. Thus the three combat battalions were formed into 6 combat teams, and each team was designed by a color. The Red and White Combat Teams from the 1st Battalion, the Blue and Green Combat Teams from the 2nd Battalion, and the Khaki and Orange Combat Teams from the 3rd Battalion. Even after reverting to American command, the Marauders continued to operate in this combat team configuration, administration continued in the traditional company and battalion configuration. Morning Reports were prepared using the company and battalion designations as were promotions, reductions, etc.
There were no known orders or other documentation prepared which identified the individual soliders assigned to a particular team, and to date at least, only one combat team roster has survived.
The Green Combat Team Roster was found attached to the Morning Reports submitted by Company G for the month of February 1944. The roster is undated, but must have been prepared in February 1944 or earlier. It was obviously a working copy, as there are several line-outs and additions. It is somewhat unique in that it shows the soldiers’ names, SN’s and their duty assignment with the team. The reason for attaching this roster to the Morning Report is unclear, in that there was no entry referring to this roster. It may have been purely by accident.
Also included is an extra single page which may not have been part of the original roster. The heading on this page reads “Attached Personnel continued from Page #4” and Page 4 of the Green Combat Team Roster says nothing about Attached Personnel.
Information supplied and prepared by Merrill’s Marauders
Proud Descendant Historian Hansel L. Haycox.
For additional information on the history of the Marauders,
visit the official Merrill’s Marauders Association website.