The complete guide to Fort Rucker - We Are The Mighty
MIGHTY CULTURE

The complete guide to Fort Rucker

Say hello to the Yellowhammer state if you’re heading to Ft. Rucker! Rucker is one of many installations that’s on the way to getting a new name. As of right now, this Army post was named for a Confederate Civil War Officer. Fort Rucker is one of the U.S. Army installations named for Confederate soldiers that will be renamed by the Commission on the Naming of Items of the Department of Defense that Commemorate the Confederate States of America. In 2021, The Moore family started a petition to rename the post in honor of Benjamin O. Davis Jr. He was the first black brigadier general in the USAF.

The post is the primary flight training installation for Army aviators. it’s also home to the Army Aviation Museum and the Army Aviation Center of Excellence. Rucker is one of the largest Army installations and has entrances from three nearby cities – Daleville, Ozark, and Enterprise. Back in the day, civilians used to be able to go onto the post without official visitor’s access. Of course, things are different now. Rucker is closed to all unauthorized traffic and visitors. If you’re interested in bringing guests on post, you’ll need to visit the Fort Rucker Visitor Center. 

Fort Rucker change of command ceremony
U.S. Army Lt. Col. Mark C. Gillespie, incoming commander of the 1st Battalion, 14th Aviation Regiment, 110th Aviation Brigade, salutes a pass in review during the change of command ceremony at Fort Rucker, Ala., June 28, 2013. (U.S. Army photo by Sara E. Martin/Released)

Fort Rucker Location 

Ft. Rucker covers about 63,000 acres of southeast Alabama countryside in an area known as the Wiregrass, named for a wild grass peculiar to the region. Much of the main post is in Dale County. The DoD also owns and leases land in Coffee, Geneva, and Houston Counties. Fort Rucker is about 80 miles southeast of Montgomery, the state capital. It is just 20 miles northwest of the city of Dothan, home of the National Peanut Festival. The communities of Daleville, Enterprise, and Ozark are all nearby. 

Directions

Ft. Rucker can be reached by car using the following routes.

Heading in from the north? Take Highway 231 S, then turn onto Alabama 249 westbound (also known as Andrews Ave.), and continue driving until you reach the Ozark Gate.

Driving from Florida? Take I-75 N to I-10 W to US-231 N, then merge onto I-84 W and follow the directions below for coming from the east.

Coming from the east? Take Highway 84 West, turn right at the Daleville exit, continue driving on Daleville Ave. for about two miles and then enter the post at the Daleville Gate.

Making the trek from the west? Take I-20 E to AL-28 E to US-331 S. Once in Enterprise, take Rucker Blvd. to the Enterprise Gate.

Fort Rucker aircraft
The Aviation Center Logistics Command’s senior aircraft equipment specialist Steven Gatto, second from left, hands over the keys to the last flyable OH-58A Kiowa aircraft at Fort Rucker, Alabama, to Sgt. Randy Phillips at the Aviation Division of the Crown Point, Indiana, Lake County Sheriff’s Department. The Kiowa departed Fort Rucker’s Shell Army Airfield on Oct. 17 for its new law enforcement mission with the Lake County Sheriff’s Department. With them are the department’s chief pilot Olaf Tessarzyk, at left, and crew chief Jamieson Hicks. (Courtesy Photo)

Transportation

Flying to the closest airports: Dothan Regional Airport

Dothan Regional Airport (21.1 miles): Provides regional airline service. Those moving on a government transportation request can obtain transportation from the Dothan airport to Fort Rucker.

Driving: Driving is ideal but it’s a long drive. Prepare with provisions and plan for lots of stops.

Contacts at Fort Rucker

Army Emergency Relief: (334) 255-2341

Chaplain: (334) 255-2989

Chaplain (on-call): (334) 255-3100

Commissary: (334) 255-6671

Dental Clinic: (334) 255-2367

Equal Opportunity Office: (334) 255-2363

Housing Office: (334) 255-9230

Information: (334) 255-1110

Inspector General: (334) 255-2118

Legal Assistance: (334) 255-2547

Lodging Reservations: (334) 598-5216

Lyster Army Health Clinic: (800) 261-7193

Lyster – Appointments: (800) 261-7193

Noise Complaints: (334) 255-2680/9244

Outdoor Recreation: (334) 255-4305

Public Affairs Office: (334) 255-2551

Rape Crisis: (334) 470-6629

School Liaison: (334) 255-9812

Suicide Prevention: (800) 273-8255

Wellness Center: (334) 255-3923

Fort Rucker troops
Col. Whitney B. Gardner, U.S. Army Aviation Center of Excellence chief of staff and commander of troops, salutes with the formation of USAACE and Fort Rucker flags behind him during the USAACE and Fort Rucker change of command ceremony at Howze Field July 21, 2022. (U.S. Army photo by Kelly Morris)

Mission and Units 

Fort Rucker’s mission is to care for the Soldiers, Family Members, and Civilians of Fort Rucker and to set the conditions for mission success. This post is the also known as the Army Aviation Center of Excellence. It’s the headquarters for U.S. Army Aviation. Garrison command manages daily operations. Equally important, the Aviation Branch Headquarters develops, coordinates and deploys Aviation operations, training and doctrine. The U.S. Army Aviation Center of Excellence also hosts various Army tenant organizations. Additionally, due to the large number of warrant officers stationed there, the Warrant OCS and Warrant OCC are both located on post.

Camp Rucker opened in May 1942, with quarters for 3,280 officers and 39,461 enlisted personnel. First, the 81st ID called Rucker home. The 81st eventually left Rucker for action in the Pacific Theater in March 1943. Then, three other infantry divisions received training at Camp Rucker during the Second World War. Together with the 98th, the 25th and the 66th Panther Division trained at Rucker. Of course, the 66th left for the European Theater in October 1944.

Way back when, Camp Rucker trained dozens of units of less than division size. These included tank, infantry replacement, and Women’s Army Corps units. Then, during the late years of WWII, the DoD housed several hundred German and a few Italian POWS. In fact, they were kept in stockades near the railroad east of the warehouse area, on the southern edge of the base.

Camp Rucker was inactive from March 1946 until August 1950, when it reopened during the Korean War. In 1950, the Minnesota Army National Guard’s 47th Infantry Division mobilized. It set up home at Rucker and BCT began in earnest. These service members then served in Korea. The 47th Infantry Division would remain at Camp Rucker throughout the war.

families at Fort Rucker
U.S. Army Maj. Gen. Kevin W. Mangum, center, the commanding general of the U.S. Army Aviation Center of Excellence, and family members of Chief Warrant Officer 4 William L. Ruf, unveil a street sign dedicated in Ruf’s honor during a ceremony in the headquarters building at Fort Rucker, Ala., June 18, 2013. Fort Rucker’s 5th Avenue was renamed Ruf Avenue during the ceremony. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. 1st Class Andrew Kosterman/Released)

Things to Do Around Ft. Rucker

Hotels

Executive Inn and Suites Enterprise (7.8 miles)

Days Inn by Wyndham Enterprise (7.6 miles)

Best Western Plus Circle Inn (7.8 miles)

Restaurants

Itaewon Korean Restaurant (2 miles) – Korean food

Trifecta (2 miles) – Pizza

Chopper’s ‘Ol School BBQ (2.5 miles) – Barbecue

Activities

Southern Broadway Dinner Theater (8.9 miles) – Enjoy dinner and a show at the Southern Broadway Dinner Theater or, if you or your family members are into acting, you can even audition!

Two by Two Petting Zoo (12.6 miles) – Experience farm animals, feathered critters, and an indoor walk-through experience.

Fort Rucker Aviation Museum (on base) – This museum details the Army’s aviation history dating back to the Civil Car when they used hydrogen-filled balloons for aerial observation.

Fort Rucker soldier
U.S. Army Spc. Robert A. Murray, a supply specialist with Company A, 1st Battalion, 145th Aviation Regiment, 1st Aviation Brigade, became a U.S. citizen while serving at Fort Rucker, Alabama, in April of 2021. (U.S. Army photo by Kelly Morris)

Ft. Rucker Housing

In the first place, head straight for your Military Housing Office to understand the current housing landscape. 

Like most DoD installations, there are three housing options for those stationed at Ft. Rucker. You can choose to live on post, off post, or will be assigned quarters. 

The MHO can help you secure off-post housing or explore on-post options. 

Single Soldiers need to report for in-processing at the Cribbins Soldier Service Center. Here, you’ll be assigned temporary barracks until your in-processing is complete. Single Soldiers in the rank of private (E-1) to sergeant (E-5) are eligible to stay in the barracks. Some married soldiers may be eligible to stay in barracks under certain circumstances.

Corvias manages all Rucker privatized housing. Corvias Communities offers several Ft. Rucker neighborhoods where you can make your new home. 

Schools Near Ft. Rucker

Mil-kids living on post can enroll in and attend a DoDEA school. Middle school mil-kids are eligible to attend Daleville City Schools. Be sure to check the DoDEA page for the most up-to-date information.

recruits at Fort Rucker
Maj. Gen. David J. Francis, U.S. Army Aviation Center of Excellence and Fort Rucker commander, leads future Soldiers as they recite the Oath of Enlistment at the opening of Fort Rucker’s annual Freedom Fest “Rumble Over Rucker” event to kick off the Independence Day weekend June 30, 2022. (U.S. Army photo by Kelly Morris)

Frequently Asked Questions

Does Fort Rucker deploy?

Though Fort Rucker is mostly a training installation, they do have units and individuals who deploy to support the overseas operations.

How many soldiers does Fort Rucker have?

Currently, there are about 5,000 service members at Fort Rucker.

What is Fort Rucker famous for?

Fort Rucker is the primary flight training installation for U.S. Army Aviators and is home to the United States Army Aviation Center of Excellence (USAACE) and the United States Army Aviation Museum. Speaking of aviators, the USAF is finally getting with the times and designing equipment to fit female aviators.

How many acres is Fort Rucker?

Fort Rucker is about 63,000 acres.

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