Distinguished Member of the Corps



Colonel Roland P. Fournier


Colonel Roland P. Fournier joined the 3rd Battalion of the 1st Gas Regiment (it did not deploy to France) in 1921. At the time of his induction into the Distinguished Member of the Corps, he was the only member of the 1st Gas still living. He served in that unit in his early career, got out to pursue a civilian career for nearly 10 years, and then re-enlisted in the 1st Chemical Battalion in Hawaii. He was serving with that unit at the time of Pearl Harbor.


Colonel Fournier was given a direct commission as a 1st Lieutenant in January 1942 and was appointed a Major in 1943. At that time, he was working with Colonel George P. Unmacht, the Chief Chemical Officer of the Central Pacific Command. As a Chemical Warfare Service (CWS) officer, he was in the first wave of Army troops that landed on the island of Kwajalein in the Central Pacific. He was part of the 7th Infantry Division that made the assault to test two new type of flame fuels for CS} WS flame thrower. He did so for the first two days of fighting and his mission completed, he then returned to Hawaii.


In the first months of the Korean War, Colonel Fournier was placed in charge of the major Chemical Corps Depot in Japan that provided direct support to Chemical Corps units in Korea. He created this depot where none had existed before using local labor and locally supplied material. This depot was critical to the operation of Chemical Corps units in South Korea. He retired in 1957, and then became a civilian employee of the Chemical Center at Fort McClellan for another two decades and was deeply involved in both training and doctrine operations. He remained very active in CCRA affairs as well as other volunteer missions until the age of 94.


Colonel Roland P. Fournier passed away in 2000 at the age of 96.