By 2nd Lt. Leanna LitschJune 14, 2014
RUKLA, Lithuania -- U.S. Army Europe's commanding general visited Lithuania June 13 as part of his tour through the Baltic region during the USAREUR-led exercise Saber Strike 2014.
Lt. Gen. Donald M. Campbell Jr. met with U.S., Lithuanian and Danish leaders and spoke with troops from USAREUR's 173rd Airborne Brigade, the 56th Stryker Brigade of the Pennsylvania Army National Guard, Lithuanian Land Forces of the Iron Wolf Brigade and members the 2nd Danish Brigade.
Campbell met with leaders of U.S., Lithuanian and Danish forces at Iron Wolf Brigade headquarters to discuss operations and mission capabilities during the multinational exercise.
Following his visit at headquarters, Campbell took a ride in a tank with Danish forces, sat in on a briefing given by the Lithuanian Land Forces and met with U.S. Soldiers participating in the exercise.
Before departing, Campbell sat down with paratroopers from the 173rd for lunch, spoke with them about the importance of their Army service in the Army and presented each with a commanding general's coin.
"I was intimidated at first, because I've never been around such a high-ranking officer," said Pvt. Maria Contreras, a supply clerk assigned to the 173rd. "It's good to hear that he cares. I felt like he was genuine in giving us advice that we can use throughout our military careers."
Saber Strike 2014 is designed to increase interoperability and strengthen relationships between NATO allies through team building to promote regional stability.
Campbell's visit took place three days after the opening ceremony for Saber Strike, the largest multinational Baltic States-hosted military exercise for Lithuania since the nation became a NATO member in 2004.