Military officials have announced that a decommissioning ceremony will be held later this week to retire the aging M41A3 “Walker Bulldog” tank after 63 years of service in the ROC Army.
The M41A3 was developed by the US military immediately following World War II. Mounting a 76 mm main gun, the light tank was designed for close infantry support and rapid airborne deployment. With 5,000 units manufactured, the M41A3 played important roles in the Korean and Vietnam wars.
The M41A3 was first purchased and put into service in Taiwan in 1958.
In October 2020, Army Command Headquarters announced their intention to replace the fleet of ageing M41A3 tanks stationed at the Kinmen Defence Command’s Lieyu Garrison Battalion by June 2021. The announcement came in the wake of a tank accident in Kinmen County on Oct 8 which left one person dead and one injured.
The day following the accident, President Tsai Ing-wen announced the military will purchase new tanks to speed up the pace at which it replaces old models.
Army Command announced on Facebook last week that the Army will hold a decommissioning ceremony for the M41A3 combat vehicle on February 25. Retired Generals with relevant service experience, and officers and soldiers who have operated this type of vehicle will be invited to attend the ceremony.
The army Facebook page invited members of the public to share any precious images or stories they may have relating to the M41A3.
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