Lithuanian Armed Forces
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On 30 January 1919, the Engineering Company was established and the Motorised Squad was set up within the Company by order of the Ministry of National Defence of the Republic of Lithuania. On 1 March 1919, the aforesaid Company was turned into the Engineering Battalion and the Motorised Squad became the Motorised Company. Commander Fanstilis was appointed to head the Company, the first task of which was actually "car hunting". At that time, a part of the German military was still in Lithuania and a thing or two could be bought from the foreign soldiers leaving the country. The Motorised Company bought the first Daimler car from the Germans. On 3 April the same year, the Company was detached from the Engineering Battalion and became a separate motorised unit. A car garage was set up in a former Russian church at Donelaičio Street. In May, the Motorised Company had had 15 passenger cars and 13 freight cars as well as 50 new motorcycles and four medical cars yet.

On 22 October 1919, a workshop for the maintenance of cars was built and Captain Vyšniauskas became its first head. On 1 December, the Motorised Company was reorganised into the Motorised Battalion. More than ever, the contribution of the Battalion was appreciated during the struggles for independence. The Battalion was involved in the evacuation of Ukmergė intendant's supply office during the Polish attack on Širvintos (18 cars were deployed), transporting General Žukauskas in the Bolshevik and Polish fronts, deploying medical cars after the battle at Širvintos and signalmen on motorcycles for the divisional headquarters, etc.  

A new task was introduced to the Battalion in 1920: it had to establish motorised units at the infantry division headquarters in Kėdainiai, Alytus and Utena. The fourth squad was also
established in Marijampolė in January 1921.

In 1926, the Motorised Battalion was changed into a Regiment, from it in September, the Regiment was divided into several separate technical military units according to types of activities.  In 1931, the Motorised Detachment was formed out of these units. Active driver training was part of the activities of Motorised Detachment. At that time, the Detachment was the most of prestigious and the biggest driving school, not only on a military level, but also in all Lithuania. The activities of the Detachment were once described in the following words: "Looms at the workshop are working non-stop and there is smoked coming out of the kitchen every day, the noisy machines are producing clouds of dust, and there motorcycles and a bunch of oily and sooty soldiers sewing".  

In different period of history, the Company-Detachment was headed by Captain Sergejus Fanstilis, Captain Adomas Daugirdas, Lieutenant Colonel Kazys Jonūnas, Lieutenant Colonel Vladas Aužbikavičius, and Lieutenant Colonel Kazys Babickas.


In 1918 battles for freedom began and the establishment of the Joniskelis County local defense squads started. Soon after, the squads were united into a Battalion.    
In August 1919, the Battalion of Joniskelis took part in the military operation to drive the Red Army across the river Dauguva.

On 10 December 1919, the Battalion was named the 9th Infantry Regiment. 

On 1 March 1920, the Regiment was given the name of Grand Duke Vytenis.

In 1919-1920, the Regiment took part in clashes with the Poles in the vicinity of Vilnius, Moletai, Sirvintos, Giedraiciai, and guarded the demarcation line at Zasliai.

Beginning 1 May 1923, the Regiment was stationed in Marijampole.


On 22 September 1929, Republic President Antanas Smetona was donated the Regiment a flag with the slogan "A Lithuanian will always stake his life for Vilnius".

In 1928-1940, the Regiment was headed by Major Antanas Paskovicius, Lieutenant Colonel Vincas Vitkauskas, Colonel Edvardas Adamkavicius, Colonel Petras Jurgaitis, Colonel Aleksandras Svylas, General Staff Colonel Antanas Gausas, General Staff Colonel Karolis Dabulevicius, and Lieutenant Colonel Strimas-Strimavicius.


In 1940, following the Soviet occupation, was formed the Regiment 119th Guard's Parachuting airborne of 7th airborne division in Marijampole. It was headed by Colonel Uzakov, Colonel Vinagradov, Colonel Kuznecov, Colonel Minigulov, Postcolonel Kovenev, Colonel Molav, Postcolonel Bachtin, Postcolonel Rvajev.

At the end of 1991, the Marijampole Rapid Reaction Company, which served as the basis of the Battalion in the future, was established, which was headed by major Linas Gudelevicius. 

On 1 March 1993, the Marijampole Motorised Battalion was set up.


On 22 October 1993, the Battalion was named after the Grand Duke Vytenis and given the right to take over the traditions of the 9th Infantry Regiment.

On 21 October 1994, the fighting flag was donated to the Battalion and the Battalion sign of honour "The Lithuania Grand Duke Vytenis" was established and awarded to 62 people, including 10 civilians. 


On 1 October 2003, the Lithuanian Grand Duke Vytenis Motorised Infantry Battalion was reorganised into the Main Support Logistics Battalion. 

In 1993-2012, the Battalion was headed by Lieutenant Colonel Rimas Zinkevičius, Lieutenant Colonel Danas Mockūnas, Lieutenant Colonel Klaidas Tolys, and Lieutenant Colonel Giedrius Vasiliauskas, major Aleksiejus Gaiževskis, Lieutenant Colonel Petras Montvila, major Konstantinas Andrejevas.







Updated on: 2012-12-17
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