303rd Military Intelligence Battalion, US Army

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303RD MILITARY INTELLIGENCE BATTALION, US ARMY


Arms of 303rd Military Intelligence Battalion, US Army

(Coat of Arms)
Arms of 303rd Military Intelligence Battalion, US Army

(Distinctive Unit Insignia)


Official blazon

Shield: Or, three piles, one in chief and two conjoined in base Azure (Oriental Blue) bearing in chief an edelweiss Argent seeded of the field and issuing from base two beacons of the last enflamed Tenné and Gold.
Crest: On a wreath of the colors Or and Azure (Oriental Blue), in front of a stylized wreath of rice Or, four flashes saltirewise Gules.
Motto: PRIMI NOSCERE (First to Know).

Distinctive Unit Insignia. Description: A Gold color metal and enamel device 1 1/8 inches (2.86 cm) in height overall consisting of a shield blazoned: Or, three piles, one in chief and two conjoined in base Azure (Oriental Blue) bearing in chief an edelweiss Argent seeded of the field and issuing from base two beacons of the last enflamed Tenné and Gold. Attached below the shield a Gold scroll inscribed “PRIMI NOSCERE” in Black letters.


Origin/meaning

Oriental blue and silver gray are the colors used for Military Intelligence Battalions. The blue piles represent the mountains of Central Europe and of Korea where the Battalion’s parent organizations served. Those organizations were Signal Service companies in Europe and a Communications Reconnaissance Battalion in Korea. The edelweiss, small white flower prized by European mountaineers, refers to the unit’s service in Central Europe and Austria. The two beacons refer to Korea’s ancient and effective system of communications which was accomplished by means of beacon fires on the mountain tops, and refer to the Battalion’s two Korean unit decorations. Crest: The colors red and yellow are traditionally associated with Vietnam as is the rice which composes the wreath, a symbol of excellence and achievement. The red flashes refer to the four Meritorious Unit Commendations earned while serving in Vietnam and signify the unit’s activities there. They also represent accuracy and speed.

The Coat of Arms was originally approved for the 303d Army Security Agency Battalion on 11 March 1963. It was amended to correct the blazon on 16 July 1963. It was rescinded on 24 April 1973. The Coat of Arms was reinstated and redesignated for the 303d Military Intelligence Battalion on 16 April 1979. The Distinctive Unit Insignia was originally approved for the 303d Army Security Agency Battalion on 11 March 1963. It was amended to correct the description on 16 July 1963. The insignia was redesignated for the 303d Military Intelligence Battalion on 16 April 1979.


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Literature: Images from Wikimedia Commons. Information from the Institute of Heraldry, US Army.