Towle Stadium is an athletic field and gym complex on Fort Bragg NC. The Stadium is named for an 82nd Airborne Division Medal of Honor Recipient Private John R. Towle. The stadium has been recently renovated. It is also the site of a tragic mass shooting that claimed the lives of eighteen soldiers in 1995.
Backstory and Context
The stadium was named for Private John R. Towle who was from Cleveland, Ohio. Pvt Towle was assigned to C Co, 504th Parachute Infantry Regiment during WWII. On 21 September 1944 near Oosterhout, Holland, Private Towle moved into an exposed fighting position and broke up a German counterattack of 100 infantrymen supported by two tanks and a half-track before he was mortally wounded by a mortar shell.
The stadium has seen its fair share of tragedy. On October 27, 1995, Sargeant Kreutzer opened fire on 1300 of his fellow paratroopers. He killed 18 of his fellow soldiers before being apprehended by authorities. This tragedy is largely unknown today but not forgotten by the soldiers assigned to Fort Bragg.
As with many military installations, Fort Bragg has named several of its buildings, fields, and locations after important military figures from the past. This practice serves to honor the extraordinary achievements of past soldiers and leaders and also teaches new soldiers about the past and the history of their unit, organization, and Fort Bragg.
Department of the Army. "Division Pamphlet 600-2." Fort Bragg, NC: 82nd Airborne Division, 2014.
- Paratroopers play in a soccer tournament in 2017. Photo: Sgt. Steven Galimore, via Defense Visual Information Distribution Service; https://www.dvidshub.net/image/3414670/towle-stadium-all-american-week-100-soccer-tournament.
- Aerial view of Towle Stadium, via AME Consulting Engineers