Our Name Has Changed, But Not Our Resolve

Why A New Name?

The organization formerly known as the Operation Wounded Warrior Support (OWWS), has recently been through a brand change. With a new brand for the organization comes a new name. OWWS will now be called Darby’s Warrior Support (DWS). Our organization was in need of a new name for several reasons.

Confusion was one of the main reasons for a new name. Operation Wounded Warrior Support is an Arkansas-based organization that commonly was confused with the national organization, Wounded Warrior Project (WWP). Even though our organization and the Wounded Warrior Project have similar goals, we would like to stand out of the shadow of WWP. Also, having such a similar name to a national organization creates the threat of a lawsuit. Having a unique name will let us shine as our own organization and will also carry no threat of legal issues in the future.

The title of our organization should reflect what we do. Our organization does not use “wounded warriors” as a marketing tool. Since we do not use this phrase as a marketing tool, having the phrase in the title does not make sense. We are Arkansas-based, Arkansas-led, Arkansas-focused and Arkansas-governed.

Since we are so proud of being from Arkansas, our name should show that but also have something to relate to the fact that we bring warriors from all across the nation to the Natural State.

The name Darby’s Warrior Support tells our story in just a few words. Colonel William O. Darby is an Arkansas native who is known for his excellent leadership roles in combat and is known for the organization of the First Ranger Battalion during World War II. Having a respected Arkansan’s name such as Darby automatically associates the Natural State with our organization.

Who Is Darby?

William Orlando Darby was an Arkansas native born in western Arkansas who is known for the organization of the First Ranger Battalion during World War II. Darby started his military career at West Point Military Academy in 1929 after graduating from Fort Smith Senior High School. At West Point, he served as a cadet company commander. In 1933 Darby graduated from West Point and was commissioned as a second lieutenant and was assigned to the first Battalion, Eight-second Field Artillery of the First Cavalry.

Quickly after the Pearl Harbor bombing, Darby was assigned as an aide-de-camp and deployed to Northern Ireland in early 1942. Darby was then chosen to organize and train a new commando unit. Darby was promoted to major and the First United States Army Ranger Battalion took place in July of 1942. After the North Africa Invasion and many successful night attacks, the First, Third and Fourth Ranger battalions invaded Sicily a year later in 1943. In January of 1944, the First and Third battalions suffered the loss of many Rangers and combined to become the First Special Service Force. The Fourth Battalion also lost many warriors and afterwards made up the Ranger force.

Darby was then reassigned to lead the 179th Infantry Regiment, Forty-fifth Division in February of 1944. Shortly after organizing the broken regiment Darby was needed back in the United States where he served as a section of chief of the General Staff’s War Plans Division at the Pentagon. Darby served 11 months in this position and then returned overseas on a tour of the European theater in 1945.

After receiving command, Darby led the Tenth Mounted Division in the advance on Lake Garda. During the process of planning for the coming day’s battles, a German shell exploded near Darby’s location where a piece of shrapnel hit him. Minutes later, Darby passed away. Just a couple of days later, German forces in Italy surrendered. After his heroic death, Darby was promoted to Brigadier General on May 15, 1945. Darby was a brave warrior or who gave up so much to fight for his country. Darby is a name we feel is representative to our organization because this Arkansas native not only fought for his country, but fought for the warriors he trained. We want to do the same for the warriors we support through our organization, Darby’s Warrior Support.