"When they're gone you miss them terribly, but you become very independent... I had my routine, my schedule, and my plans... he kind of got in the way of all those things."
- Eva Creel, an Army spouse
Bridging the gap: Redeployment isn't always smooth for Army families
28th Annual Legion of Merit Conference
What is it?
U.S. Army Europe (USAREUR) held the 28th annual Legion of Merit Conference (LOM Conference) in Heidelberg, Germany, on Oct. 20, 2008. The LOM Conference is an annual, one-day event that brings together foreign military holders of the LOM with key USAREUR leaders and staff. The attendees are generally general officer level retirees who have contact with influential leaders within their home nations. This year USAREUR leaders and 39 foreign attendees from five countries (Germany, France, the United Kingdom, Poland and the Netherlands) attended the conference.
What has the Army done?
The intent of the LOM Conference is to create a forum to update LOM holders about USAREUR and Army missions, transformation and current initiatives in order to increase understanding and support. "Build Tomorrow's Coalitions" was the theme of the LOM Conference and the USAREUR commander, Gen. Carter F. Ham, stressed that coalitions were the way of the future. This year, the attendees received information about current USAREUR missions and transformation, the Georgia Humanitarian Assistance Mission, NATO Transformation, and NATO Lessons Learned from ISAF in Afghanistan. There were four key messages stressed throughout the conference. The United States remains committed to NATO and Europe, and U.S. forces in Europe embody this commitment. USAREUR continues to transform its forces and realign its footprint. The USAREUR headquarters is also transforming to become an agile, JTF-capable, deployable headquarters with direct control of war-fighting units. Training and exercising with allies and partners is more important than ever as we fight terrorism around the world and prepare for an uncertain future.
What continued efforts does the Army have planned for the future?
USAREUR will continue to host the Legion of Merit Conference. Feedback from the attendees indicates that this is a valuable conference. Not only does it provide them the opportunity to receive updates on the U.S. Army, but also affords them the opportunity to meet serving U.S. Army leaders. It is this personal interaction that can have the greatest impact on all attendees.
Why is this important to the Army?
The LOM Conference has potential far-reaching implications for the Army as each attendee will carry USAREUR strategic messages back to their communities. Participants are often approached by politicians and other leaders in their home country about issues concerning the U.S. Army and related military issues. The LOM Conference arms them so they can be better informed to interact with various leaders and politicians.
USAREUR 28th Annual Legion of Merit Conference
USAREUR Web site
- 2008 Strategic Communication Guide - Read the 2008 Army Strategic Communication Guide for key messages and updates
- Strategic Communication Coordination Group (SCCG) Workspace
- Army Public Affairs Portal
- Stories of Valor
- Speaker's Toolkit
- Information Papers with " 2008 Army Posture Statement"
October 2008: National Domestic Violence Awareness Month