V Corps honors Germany military badge recipients, thanks Bundeswehr for support in final ceremony
September 11, 2013
WIESBADEN, Germany - Members of V Corps gathered for one last ceremony on Wiesbaden's Clay Kaserne before officially inactivating on Sept. 15.
As German and American guests looked on in the Tony Bass Fitness Center Sept. 6, Col. John Spiszer, V Corps chief of staff, talked about the storied unit's longstanding relationship in Germany -- more than six decades -- and thanked German Bundeswehr partners for their support and help in encouraging members of the corps to be recognized with host nation marksmanship and fitness awards.
"We've got a long history in Germany, and a long history with the Bundeswehr," said Spiszer. "During that time we've stood shoulder-to-shoulder with our German partners."
During the ceremony some 30 V Corps Soldiers were recognized with the German Armed Forces Proficiency Badge in Gold and/or the Schuetzenschnur (German Armed Forces Marksmanship Badge) in Gold, Silver or Bronze.
"These Soldiers took time out of their weekends to work on this … to become better partners and better Soldiers. It was a lot of time spent to better themselves," Spiszer said.
"I'm really proud of what you've done. It's a really great job by all of you," said Bundeswehr Kapitanleutnant Dirk Matheis in making the award presentation.
Matheis added that he hoped that despite V Corps' impending inactivation, the U.S.-German partnerships would continue with other local units.
Eight German military members were also honored for their guidance and support.
"We wanted to express our gratitude, respect and admiration," said Spiszer in recognizing those who worked diligently in helping V Corps' Soldiers train with Bundeswehr weapons, challenge themselves to be physically fit in various disciplines and master the requirements for the German military awards.
Matheis, who helped train California Army National Guard members during Operation Yaeger, was presented with the California Commendation Medal for his "meritorious service."
In conclusion, Spiszer praised "the great friendships" shared by V Corps and the Bundeswehr.