ANSBACH, Germany (July 19, 2023) - On July 7, 2023, the German-American Partnership Shoot, Herrieden Shoot for short, an annual tradition of the U.S. Army Garrison (USAG) Ansbach and the City of Herrieden took place at the Oberdachstetten military training area. This is a friendly shooting competition where teams of Soldiers from various Ansbach units as well as local national groups from the Polizei, active and reserve Soldiers of the German Bundeswehr and civlians from the city of Herrieden come together for a day of partnership and comraderie. This year marked the 39th time of this fun event, after the competition was moved from Herrieden to the Oberdachstetten military training area 27 years ago.
“I heard it would be a good opportunity to work with the Germans, so I took it”, says Pvt. Payton Abraham, a U.S. soldier assigned to 603rd Aviation Support Battalion, 3rd Combat Aviation Brigade, 3rd Infantry Division. He goes on to say: “We can check out their weapons, it’s a pretty fun time.”
The German reservist association, Kreisgruppe Mittelfranken-West, was also on location with a number of different weapons such as the SL8 rifle, which was used during competition an several other types such as the HK417 for display.
Mark Hellmann, Polizeioberwachtmeister for the Polizeiinspektion Ansbach appreciated the chance to interact. “ I like to meet new people and this is perfect to try different equipment than our own,” said Hellman, “I like it. We can learn new things from the (U.S.) soldiers and this is so much different than our police shooting range.”
Germans and Americans collaborated to organize and ensure a smooth event. Representatives of Herrieden, Stefan Horndasch and Georg Schimmel, again worked together excellently with the USAG Ansbach Headquarters and Headquarters Company with Cpt. Evan Fleming at the helm and First Sergeant Maurice Hendrixson directing the range. Range operations for the entire event continued from nine o’clock in the morning through the afternoon to accommodate all 25 teams, each with six shooters. The competition was performed with M-4 carbine rifles and nine rounds of ammunition provided by USAG Ansbach for the U.S. Army soldiers and SL8 rifles for all German participants. Georg Schimmel then scored and diligently evaluated each target. Local vendors were also onsite providing local delicacies like bratwurst and schnitzel, which sustained hungry shooters throughout the day.
The award ceremony was held a week later at the Herrieden Altstadtfest. Mayor Dorina Jechnerer and Garrison Commander, Col Aaron Dixon jointly presented the awards.
"The importance of this event is the friendship between Germany and our American friends," said Dorina Jechnerer, Mayor of Herrieden at the award ceremony. "I think it's a good tradition to have this competition and I congratulate all the successful shooters."
The winning teams and shooters received trophies and a hand-painted Herrieden shooting target with the town castle as a motif, representing the friendship between the town of Herrieden and the armed forces. Overall, it was another showcase of the longstanding partnership between USAG Ansbach and the City of Herrieden.
The U.S. Army Garrison Ansbach military community is located in the Franconian region of Bavaria and is spread across six sites and nine kasernes dispersed around the city of Ansbach and the village of Illesheim. Today, Ansbach is home to the 12th Combat Aviation Brigade, the community's largest tenant unit, as well as the 5th Battalion, 4th Air Defense Artillery Regiment. The garrison takes pride in its support to more than 8,000 Soldiers, civilians and family members working and living in the Ansbach area.
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