Twelve Army units in Germany to case colors, starting in June
Stars and Stripes November 20, 2004
HEIDELBERG, Germany — The Army announced Friday it will shut down a dozen units spread among seven installations throughout Germany, affecting about 1,000 troops.
The announcement comes as the Army is preparing for a massive withdrawal of forces from Europe that is expected to cut some 40,000 soldiers from the 63,000-strong force here in the coming years, while shuttering dozens of bases.
Officials, however, are separating the two efforts.
“This has nothing to do with ongoing global posture review,” said Lt. Col. Jane Crichton, a spokeswoman for U.S. Army Europe. Instead, she said, the units are being inactivated as part of several internal Army reorganization efforts.
“It would be a mistake to conclude that if a unit is leaving that its base is closing,” said Crichton, who then added “we are doing prudent planning” to prepare for those closures.
The unit inactivations will begin in June, even as several of the units are still fighting in Iraq.
The units that will case their colors next year and their inactivation dates are:
Troops D, E and F, 1st Squadron, 4th Cavalry Regiment, 1st Infantry Division, Schweinfurt, on June 15.Troops D, E, F, 1st Squadron, 1st Cavalry Regiment, 1st Armored Division, Büdingen, June 15.Headquarters and Headquarters Battery, 41st Field Artillery Brigade, V Corps Artillery, Babenhausen, July 15.Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 11th Aviation Brigade, V Corps, Illesheim, Aug. 15.503rd Chemical Detachment, V Corps, Heidelberg, June 15.69th Chemical Detachment, 1st AD, Hanau, June 15.55th Personnel Support Detachment C, 1st Personnel Command, Friedberg, June 15.4th battalion, 3rd Air Defense Artillery Regiment, 1st Infantry Division, Kitzingen, Sept. 15.Troops in units currently deployed, notably 1-4 Cav and 4-3 ADA, will be given plenty of time for postcombat reintegration before relocating, promise officials.
“We’ve looked at their redeployment time lines so that they can do a responsible transition,” said Lt. Col. Brian McNerney, a spokesman for V Corps, which oversees all of the affected units. “No one is going to come off a ship or plane and be told to grab a duffle and go.”
While the units will disappear from the Army’s rolls in Europe, most of the soldiers will not. In fact, Army officials say the total number of troops in Europe will remain steady.
“Specifics on which soldiers will be reclassed, remain assigned to the division and corps or reassigned elsewhere will be figured out over the coming months,” McNerney said.
Any moves that do need to take place will largely be done over the summer, say officials.
The unit closures will likely mean the loss of some civilian jobs.
“A small number of U.S. and local national employees may be affected by this action, and supporting garrison functions may be re-evaluated,” according to an Army statement.
“Appropriate notification regarding personnel decisions will be made to the applicable works councils and employees in accordance with legal and regulatory requirements.”