After Landing in Oran, North Africa in 1944, we were shocked to learn that the 10th was to be deactivated, its colors returned to the U.S. and its personnel processed through replacement depots. We held a final dress parade for the occasion.
I had received orders for another assignment. As I was about to depart, I noticed the three senior non-commissioned officers of the regiment approaching me -- Sergeant Major Stafford and Master Sergeants Watkins and Ellis. After saluting and remaining rigidly at attention, each of the three made a short statement taking note of all that we had experienced together. It was a sad and bitter moment.We all knew that so much of our long effort to build a battle-ready unit was being cast to the winds. I was deeply moved, for the men of the 10th were furled and encased for shipment home. They were splendid soldiers, and kept together would have performed well on any mission given to them.
I emerged from the experiences with the 10th Cavalry with a new perspective and a deep conviction that full integration within the US Armed Forces was a national necessity.
Trooper Critchfield has retired from the US Army as a Colonel, and since WWII, he has observed with enormous interest and satisfaction the integration that has taken place within our armed services.
Today He is a proud member of the Ninth & Tenth (Horse) Cavalry Association, and reflects the days, when he served with the 10th Cavalry Regiment during WWII.
After Pearl Harbor, the 10th moved to Camp Lockett, on the Mexican border. Throughout 1941 to 1943 we pursued an intensive and sustained training program including weeks of field exercises along the Mexican border and major maneuver in Louisiana and East Texas with 1st Cavalry Division and other major units of infantry, cavalry and artillery. After layers of training, discipline, growing competence and in spite of the disadvantages of segregation, much pride and esprit. For me it was a revealing and remarkably satisfying experience.
Served in the Tenth Cavalry Regiment from 1940 to 1944 Rank of 1st Lt.