It is my sad duty to report the passing of Colonel (R) Gerald K. Griffin. “Jerry” as he was known to us, was the primary founder of the 16th Infantry Regiment Association. He and four others founded the Association in 1989 and formalized it as a charitable veterans organization with the IRS in 1990. Jerry also served as the Honorary Colonel of the Regiment for 10 years (27 Sep 96-2 Aug 06) which well may be a record (The regulation actually limits an individual to six years, but as we all know, that would not stop Jerry!). Jerry was a man of action. He did not talk about things we should do, he did them. His influence on this organization was enormous and almost all of the customs, traditions, and programs established for this Association were his. As one of our members said recently, the 16th Infantry Regiment Association was “Jerry’s baby.” While he was active, his everyday activities often seemed to be focused on improving the size of our membership, the quality of our programs, and the care and assistance we can provide our active duty soldiers as well as our own former Rangers. Jerry was a man people seemed to love—or not—but no one would argue that Jerry was not a strong leader or did not look out for the best interests of the Association and its members. And he was always about the REGIMENT. As he liked to say, “We are ALL Rangers, not A Company Rangers, or B Company Rangers, or 4th Battalion Rangers. This is a Regiment and we need to remember it and celebrate it that way.” God bless you Jerry and thank you for all you did for the Regiment.
Semper Paratus! Always Ready!
SFC (R) Edward Walding
When the 5th Battalion was deployed to Saudi Arabia for DESERT SHIELD in 1990, he functioned as a platoon master gunner. For DESERT SHIELD/STORM, his company was cross-attached to the 2nd Battalion, 34th Armor. After his battalion’s return from DESERT STORM, Walding was assigned as the platoon sergeant of 3rd Platoon, D Company. During his time in this position, his platoon was awarded the title of “Division Honor Platoon” for achieving the highest score in the 1st Infantry Division on Bradley Platoon Table XII. He went on to serve for a time as the acting First Sergeant in D Company before leaving Fort Riley in 1992.
SFC Walding is a member of the 16th Infantry Association. As such, he maintains a webpage for Desert Storm members of the 5th Battalion, 16th Infantry and helps coordinate the bi-annual reunion of the 1st Brigade, 1st Infantry Division’s DESERT STORM veterans. He also attends events as he is able such as the dedication of the commemorative plaque for the 25th Anniversary of the 16th Infantry’s participation in Operation DESERT STORM in February 2016 at Fort Riley.
The Memorials Program is one of the 16th Infantry Regiment Association’s oldest programs.
Department of Defense Commemorative Partner for the 50th Anniversary of the Vietnam War Commemoration and the United States World War I Commemorative Commission