By Sgt. Daniel J. NicholsOctober 29, 2010
HEIDELBERG, Germany - Several U.S. Army Europe and Installation Management Command-Europe food service personnel and dining facilities received awards for achievements at the 43rd Annual Food Service Awards ceremony at Patrick Henry Village here, Oct. 28.
The awards program "recognizes the teamwork, professionalism, service and the quality that our dining facilities have, and continue to improve on, "said Brig. Gen. Paul Wentz, USAREUR's deputy chief of staff for logistics.
Two sets of awards were presented at the ceremony, for the USAREUR/IMCOM-E Culinary Warrior NCO and Soldier of the Year, and for winners in the garrison and field kitchen categories of the USAEUR/IMCOM-E level of the Philip A. Connelly food service competition.
The four teams that earned Connelly awards competed in a field of 27 dining facilities across Europe, while the culinary warriors proved themselves against a pool of hundreds of possible competitors at a time when many other missions are expected of them, Wentz said.
"We have over 900 food service Soldiers in USAREUR, and at any given time 25 percent of them are deployed and 25 percent of them are getting ready to deploy," said Wentz. " So in the middle of all that, these Soldiers are continuing to hone their skills and work hard to be the best of the best."
The culinary warriors competed for their titles in September, while dining facilities competing for the Connelly awards were evaluated in a number of areas, including food preparation, taste, nutrition, service and sanitation during evaluations earlier this year.
Wentz said the two - quality dining facilities and quality food service Soldiers - go hand in hand.
"Without great dining facilities we would struggle to maintain the great Soldiers that we have, so thank you for what you do, and continue to do, for our Army," the general said.
Winners of the USAREUR-level awards will go on to compete at the Department of the Army level in December.
PHILIP A. CONNELLY AWARDS WINNERS
Small garrison dining facility category: 1st Battalion, 10th Special Forces Dining Facility, U.S. Army Garrison Stuttgart
Large garrison dining facility category: U.S. Army Garrison Grafenwoehr Dining Facility
Small garrison dining facility category: Warrior Sports CafAfA Dining Facility, U.S. Army Garrison Hohenfels
Large garrison dining facility category: South of the Alps Dining Facility, U.S. Army Garrison Vicenza
USAREUR/IMCOM-E CULINARY WARRIORS OF THE YEAR WINNERS
Culinary Warrior NCO of the Year: Staff Sgt. Keldric Kearse, 172nd Infantry Brigade
Culinary Warrior Soldier of the Year: Spc. Danny Washington, 172nd Infantry Brigade
Culinary Warrior NCO of the Year: Sgt. Andrew Nicholson, 5th Quartermaster Company
Culinary Warrior Soldier of the Year: Spc. Sarah Kilpatrick, 66th Transportation Company