By Ms. Joyce Costello ( Hohenfels )October 9, 2019
HOHENFELS, Germany- The Joint Multinational Readiness Center trains thousands of soldiers from multiple allied and partner countries; however, one of the most important relationships is with the local communities. JMRC Observer Coach/ Trainer teams (who are commonly referred to as critter teams such as the Adler, Vampires or Warhogs) were partnered up with the local Bürgermeister or mayors. The two groups met on Oct. 8 for a flyover of the Hohenfels Training Area and to discuss how enduring relations could further evolve.
According to Lt. Col. Phil Lamb, JMRC's Senior Aviation Trainer, despite being plagued by low ceilings and limited visibility, which hindered their ability to fully execute the Mayor Helicopter Overflight Program as planned, the engagement was a success.
"Opportunities like these not only showcase our capabilities, but also facilitate mutual trust, shared understanding, and ultimately lead to increased readiness for our soldiers and their families living overseas" said Lamb.
Mayors from Hohenfels, Hohenburg, Kallmuenz, Kastl and, Laaber and the county commissioner from Neumarkt took part in the overflight program.
"For the communities around the training area, it is very important to have a friendly relationship together" said Mayor Stefan Braun from Kastl. "For us it is important because we have a nice community and if the Americans were to always stay in the training area- then you would have a border between the Americans and Germans- it is better we work together."
The Kastl mayor was teamed with the Exercise and Mission Command team, known by their critter name Spielmeister.
"We are looking forward to getting involved in the Kastl community and inviting the mayor and community to some of our events to start building those bonds," said Lt. Col. Derek Campbell, Exercise and Mission Command officer in charge. "These direct relationships help us to be a conduit between the local communities and JMRC."
The Kastl mayor encouraged member of the Spielmeister team to visit their big castle on the hill as well as a mummified princess in the church by the castle.