FORT HOOD — It was 100 years ago today, May 16, 1918, when III Corps was activated, sending troops to the European front.
Since then, III Corps has sent soldiers all around the world throughout conflicts and peacetime, including Vietnam, Somalia, Panama, Honduras, Bosnia, Iraq, and Afghanistan.
Much of III Corps is deployed right now supporting the Operation Inherent Resolve campaign fighting ISIS in the Middle East. So, Operation Phantom Warrior Salute is just getting started.
"We are the troops from which Phantom Warriors would rise," said one soldier who was representing the III Corps soldiers of World War I, dressed in period clothing.
III Corps remembers the missions through the years, from World War I to World War II to the Vietnam War to humanitarian operations in Somalia called Operation Restore Hope.
The late Retired General Robert Shoemaker's wife, Tuke, first moved to Texas before III Corps even arrived to Fort Hood.
"My father was in it, my husband was in it and that's all I know about it," Shoemaker said.
"Headquarters, when my husband came here, was still in Temple and there's this long stretch of nothing but sand and occasionally some water," she explained, recounting Fort Hood years ago.
For the current III Corps commander, Lieutenant General Paul Funk II, III Corps' impact is personal too. It's also the family business.
"I was born into III Corps, so I was born in 1962. III Corps got to Fort Hood in 1954. So I was born into it and I am still in it today," said General Funk.
Funk followed in his father's footsteps, who was also the III Corps Commander.
"It's the first time it happened in III Corps history, a father and son commanding. It did happen one other time at the Corps level, the Abrams family," said Retired Lieutenant General Paul "Butch" Funk.
III Corps had cake celebrations on 2 continents today because they cut a cake in Baghdad too.
"To me, it's a great impact, it shows our community that we're giving back to what we have done as a family," said Staff Sergeant Jeanne Whitfield with the III Corps NCO Academy.
The birthday celebration continues in October with a host of different events, starting with a fishing tournament and ending with a concert with Gary Sinise and his Lt. Dan Band.