229th Multifunctional Medical Battalion receives new insignia

The Headquarters and Headquarters Detachment, 229th Multifunctional Medical Battalion receives approval of the unit insignia designed by Capt. and Mrs. Joseph Schmitz.

By Nancy K. Lane

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. - When the Headquarters and Headquarters Detachment, 229th Multifunctional Medical Battalion was created as a new force structure, they knew they needed a distinctive unit insignia that also needed to symbolically represent the unit.

Capt. Joseph Schmitz and his wife Sara began work in November 2007 to create the draft of such an insignia. The design was submitted to the Institute of Heraldry under the Office of the Administrative Assistant to the Secretary of the Army and was approved in January 2010.

"The majority of medical units' insignias involve a red cross, which traditionally symbolized a medical unit providing treatment. As the Multifunctional Medical Battalion provides multiple ancillary services and support such as medical logistics, medical operations and planning, and medical evacuation planning and support, it did not seem appropriate to utilize a red cross," said Capt. Schmitz. "Sara and I worked together to develop an insignia which appropriately symbolizes what we felt would embody the entire mission of the 229th Multifunctional Medical Battalion."

From colors to emblems, symbolism can be found throughout the insignia. Maroon and white (silver) are traditionally associated with the Medical Corps. Green represents medicine and regeneration. Gold is emblematic of honor and high ideals.

The two sections of the shield highlight echelons I and II of medical care. The chevron shape that serves as the partition line between the two sections refers to the Non-Commissioned Officers Corps, the backbone of the Army.

The charging knight represents the Early Campaign of the Multifunctional Medical Battalion to provide early medical care to the warfighter. The knight also gives emphasis to the fighting Soldiers for whom the Multifunctional Medical Battalion provides support.

The crescent is adapted from the seal of Missouri symbolizing Missouri as the "second son," as it was the second state formed out of the Louisiana Purchase while the stars highlight the six branches or corps of the Medical Department: Medical Corps, Nurse Corps, Medical Specialist Corps, Medical Service Corps, Dental Corp and the Veterinary Corps.

The caduceus is the wand of Hermes or Mercury and is used as a symbol of the medical profession and as the emblem of the Medical Corps of the US Army. It represents the Command and Control of the Multifunctional Medical Battalion.

The motto translates to "Prevent Provide Protect."

The 229th Multifunctional Medical Battalion is stationed at the Blue Armory in Jefferson City. The subordinate units are the 205th Area Support Medical Company stationed at the Ozark Armory in Kansas City and the 206th Area Support Medical Company is stationed in Springfield with the Detachment 1 located at the Kingshighway Armory in St. Louis.

Although both of the subordinate units have been previously deployed, the Headquarters and Headquarters Detachment, 229th Multifunctional Medical Battalion's mission in the Sinai as part of MFO 55 will be its first mobilization.

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