WIESBADEN, Germany – On Saturday, April 30, members of the U.S. Army Garrison Wiesbaden Better Opportunities for Single Soldiers team kicked off their partnership with the Landeskommando Hessen, the state command of the German Army in Hessen.
Sgt. Megan Courtney, who took over as BOSS president in January of 2022, explained that the partnership had been discussed in the past, but was halted by the COVID-19 pandemic. When she took over the presidency, she didn’t just want to continue the discussion, she scheduled the first meeting right away.
“I wanted to kick off everything with a social event to get to know each other. It is always great to have a partner from the other side of the military. We can relate on so many things,” Courtney said.
Her counterpart in the German Army, Sgt. Jochen “Joe” Knoblauch, also known as “Sgt. Garlic,” has worked together with USAG Wiesbaden and U.S. Army Europe and Africa before.
“Back then, when the U.S. Army had changes of command, the German flag was always carried by an American Soldier until somebody approached me and asked if I would put together a German Army Color Guard with German Soldiers to participate in such events,” Knoblauch explains. “I quickly noticed that a partnership between two Armies can be strengthened not only on a leadership level, but also on the staff level.”
On March 30, Courtney and Knoblauch met to discuss the way ahead and decided to kick off the partnership with a BBQ in the small village of Obergladbach, in the Taunus mountains.
“Meeting in such a beautiful location is important to get to know each other better. It allows Soldiers of all ranks to come together informally to find opportunities to work together and learn from each other,” Knoblauch explained.
“We are planning to do more training events and socials with our friends from the German Army,” said Courtney. “This will give our Soldiers the opportunity to learn about the host nation and make new friends.”
A total of 21 Soldiers participated in the kick-off event, but Courtney and Knoblauch hope that the numbers will increase soon. Soldiers from both armies look forward to meeting again soon to discuss more opportunities and event coordination.