Fort Dix is a United States Army installation located in parts of New Hanover Township, Pemberton Township, and Springfield Township, in Burlington County, New Jersey, USA. It is also a census-designated place, and as of the United States 2000 Census, the installation population was 7,464.
On July 15 1947, Fort Dix became a Basic Training Center and the home of the 9th Infantry Division. In 1954, the 9th moved out and the 69th Infantry Division made the fort home until it was deactivated on March 16 1956. During the Vietnam War rapid expansion took place. A mock Vietnam village was constructed and soldiers received Vietnam-specific training before being deployed. Since Vietnam, Fort Dix has sent soldiers to Operation Desert Shield, Desert Storm, Bosnia, Afghanistan, and Iraq.
Fort Dix was an early casualty of the first Base Realignment and Closure process in the early 1990s, losing the basic-training mission that had introduced new recruits to military life since 1917. But Fort Dix advocates attracted Army Reserve interest in keeping the 31,000 acre (130 km²) post as a training reservation. With the reserves, and millions for improvements, Fort Dix actually has grown again to employ 3,000. As many as 15,000 troops train there on weekends, and the post has been a major mobilization point for reserve and National Guard troops since the September 11, 2001 attacks on New York City and Washington, D.C.
Fort Dix has completed its realignment from an individual training center to a FORSCOM Power Projection Platform for the Northeastern United States under the command and control of the United States Army Reserve Command. Primary missions include being a center of excellence for training, mobilizing and deploying Army Reserve and National Guard units; providing regional base operations support to on-post and off-post active and reserve component units of all services; and providing a high-quality community environment, including 848 housing units for service members and their families. Fort Dix supported more than 1.1 million man-days of training in 1998. A daily average of more than 13,500 persons live or work within the garrison and its tenant organizations. Fort Dix subinstallations include the Charles E. Kelly Support Facility in Oakdale, Pennsylvania and the Devens Reserve Forces Training Area in Ayer, Massachusetts.
In 2005, the United States Department of Defense announced that Fort Dix would be affected by a Base Realignment and Closure. It will be merged with two neighboring military bases, McGuire Air Force Base and Naval Air Engineering Station Lakehurst, establishing Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, N.J. This will be the first base of its kind in the United States.
Fort Dix is also home to Fort Dix Federal Correctional Institution, the largest single federal prison in America. It is a low security installation for male inmates located within the military installation. As of April 5 2006, it houses 4,226 inmates, and a minimum security satellite camp houses an additional 426 male prisoners.
This recommendation is the result of a nation-wide analysis of Reserve Component installations and facilities conducted by a team of functional experts from Headquarters, Department of the Army, the Office of the State Adjutant General, and the Army Reserve Regional Readiness Command.
This recommendation transforms Army Reserve command and control by consolidating four major headquarters onto Fort Dix, NJ; this recommendation supports the Army Reserve’s nationwide Command and Control restructuring initiative to reduce Regional Readiness Commands from ten to four. The realignment of Pitt USARC, Coraopolis, PA, by the disestablishment of the 99th Regional Readiness Command allows for the establishment of the Northeast Regional Readiness Command Headquarters at Fort Dix, NJ, which will further support the re-engineering and streamlining of the Command and Control structure of the Army Reserves throughout the United States. This restructuring will allow for the closure of Camp Kilmer, NJ, and the relocation of the HQ 78th Division to Fort Dix and establishment of one of the new Army Reserve Sustainment Units of Action, which establishes a new capability for the Army Reserve while increasing the support capabilities of the Army Reserve to the Active Army. To further support restructuring; the realignment of Fort Totten and the disestablishment of the HQ 77th RRC will enable the establishment of a Maneuver Enhancement Brigade at Fort Dix, resulting in a new operational capability for the Army Reserve. The realignment of Fort Sheridan, IL, by relocating the 244th Aviation Brigade to Fort Dix coupled with the Department of the Navy recommendation to close NAS Willow Grove, PA, and relocate Co A/228th Aviation to Fort Dix consolidates Army aviation assets in one location. Other actions supporting restructuring include realigning maintenance functions on Fort Dix, the closure of Charles Kelly Support Center, PA, and relocation of multiple subordinate units to Pitt USARC, PA; and the closure of five US Army Reserve Centers in the greater New York City area with relocation of those units to Fort Totten. These actions will significantly enhance training, mobilization, equipment readiness and deployment.
This recommendation reduces military manpower and associated costs for maintaining existing facilities by closing one Camp, five Army Reserve Centers, realigning five facilities and relocating forces to multiple installations throughout the Northeast Region of the United States. These actions will also improve business processes. The implementation of this recommendation and creation of these new command structures will enhance military value, improve homeland defense capability, greatly improve training and deployment capability, create significant efficiencies and cost savings, and is consistent with the Army’s force structure plans and Army transformational objectives. The Department understands that the State of New York will close NYARNG Armories: 47th Regiment Marcy Armory, Brooklyn and Brooklyn Bedford Armory/OMS 12. The Armed Forces Reserve Centers will have the capability to accommodate these units if the state decides to relocate the units from these closed facilities into a new AFRC on Fort Hamilton, NY.
This recommendation provides the opportunity for other Local, State, or Federal organizations to partner with the Reserve Components to enhance homeland security and homeland defense at a reduced cost to those agencies.
This recommendation considered feasible locations within the demographic and geographic areas of the closing facilities and affected units. The sites selected were determined as the best locations because they optimize the Reserve Components’ ability to recruit and retain Reserve Component soldiers and to train and mobilize units affected by this recommendation.
Although not captured in the COBRA analysis, this recommendation avoids an estimated $168.3M in mission facility renovation costs and procurement avoidance associated with meeting Anti Terror / Force Protection construction standards and altering existing facilities to meet unit training and communication requirements. Consideration of these avoided costs would reduce costs and increase the net savings to the Department of Defense in the 6-year BRAC implementation period, and in the 20-year period used to calculate NPV.
There were 843 households, of which 63.6% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 75.2% were married couples living together, 6.8% had a female householder with no husband present, and 15.3% were non-families. 14.7% of all households were made up of individuals and none had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 3.06 and the average family size was 3.39.
In the CDP the population was spread out with 13.6% under the age of 18, 8.1% from 18 to 24, 62.1% from 25 to 44, 15.1% from 45 to 64, and 1.1% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 34 years. For every 100 females there were 491.0 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 734.5 males.
The median income for a household in the CDP was $41,397, and the median income for a family was $41,705. Males had a median income of $31,657 versus $22,024 for females. The per capita income for the CDP was $10,543. About 2.5% of families and 3.2% of the population were below the poverty line, including 3.2% of those under age 18 and none of those age 65 or over.
However, both a sufficient budget for the project and supplies were scarce. While Goodman constructed the initial statue out of railroad tracks and other items, he commissioned the work of Private Stuart Scherr, whom he studied industrial arts with in New York City.
After working 10-12 hours a day for 18 months, the project was finished. Goodman's enlistment requirement ended shortly thereafter. However, in 1989, while on a trip bound for Philadelphia, Goodman's son asked him to return to Fort Dix so he could see the statue he had constructed. When Goodman returned to the original site of the statue's construction, he found it had disappeared. Encouraged by his wife to inquire more on the statue's disappearance, Goodman entered Post Headquarters, where he had a chance encounter with then-Post Commander Major General James Wurman, who asked Goodman to restore the statue, as the statue had become a symbol of "the American fighting man."
Once a month, Goodman traveled from his Cresskill, Bergen County home to meet with a committee organized by the Fort Dix Chapter of the Association of the U.S. Army to restore the statue. Since its completion, the statue of the Ultimate Weapon had become damaged by the extreme temperatures of both summer and winter. Minor repairs made to the statue over the years failed to facilitate its much-needed restoration, so it was decided to recast the entire statue in bronze. The original statue was taken to a foundry near Princeton, where molds for the recasting process were made. It was then taken to a temporary home in the then-Fort Dix Reception Station, which today is the United States Air Force's Air Mobility Warfare Center, before it was transferred to Sharpe Field.
Goodman was said to have put a great deal of his own time and money into the project, of which cost was estimated at $86,833. A major fund-raising campaign undertaken by Fort Dix succeeded in raising over $80,000 for the recasting, and over $25,000 was contributed from outside donors.
Retired Command Sergeant Major Wright considers the statue a success since the statue does not display a particular race, color, creed, or religion, and is "a symbol to be recognized."
Standing 14 feet tall and weighing over 300 pounds, the newly-recast bronze statue was unveiled in Infantry Park in August 1989, where it remains today.
On May 8 2007, six individuals, mostly Albanian Muslims from Kosovo and the Republic of Macedonia, were arrested for plotting an attack against Fort Dix and the soldiers within. The men are believed to be Islamic radicals who may have been inspired by the ideologies of Al-Qaeda. The men allegedly planned to storm the fort with automatic weapons in an attempt to kill as many soldiers as possible. The men will face charges of conspiracy to kill U.S. servicemen.