Kennedy, a retired Army Chemical Corps officer, a well-respected Soldier and leader, answered the rhetorical question “What does the Chemical Corps Regimental Association do for me?”
Kennedy said through CCRA activities, to include events sponsored by the McClellan Chapter, the association is able to support Chemical Corps Soldiers and their families, support special events at the Fort Leonard Wood-based Chemical, Biological, Radiological, and Nuclear (CBRN) School, and provide financial support to the Chemical Corps Museum there.
The CCRA was responsible for donating more than $50,000 to various projects and activities between 2010 and 2012. Nearly half of that was in direct assistance to Chemical Corps Soldiers and their families. Additionally, on average, more than $8,800 has been given to Chemical Corps Museum each year during the past 12 years to fund initiatives to ensure the proud heritage and history of the Corps is properly documented and displayed for posterity.
“Our first priority,” Kennedy said, “is helping Soldiers and their families. We have to support Soldiers across the (Chemical) Corps.”
Northeast Alabama has a long relationship with the Army’s Chemical Corps. The Army Chemical School was headquartered at Fort McClellan for decades. Nearby, Anniston Army Depot was home to one of the Army’s nine chemical munitions stockpiles. Even though the Chemical School moved to Fort Leonard Wood, Mo., 15 years ago as directed by the national Base Realignment and Closure Commission, and all of the chemical munitions stored at the depot were safely demilitarized almost two years ago, there is still a significant presence of the Army’s Chemical Corps expertise in the surrounding area.
Besides retired Chemical Corps service members from all of the Armed Services, civilian employees, and Chemical Corps related representatives of corporate and contractor operations, there are several chemical military units in the state. Three of the Chemical Corps units are local. Two belong to the U.S. Army Reserve in Anniston: the 310th Biological Integration Detection System (BIDS) Company and the 490th CBRN Battalion. The third unit, the 151st CBRN Battalion, is an Alabama Army National Guard unit in Gadsden.
People interested in learning more about the CCRA and the McClellan Chapter may contact Mike Lanphere, the chapter president at 256-453-3553. CCRA membership is open to individuals and corporate partners.