RAF MILDENHALL, England — Shannon Pearson of RAF Mildenhall has been named the U.S. Air Forces in Europe Family Child Care Provider of the Year by USAFE Services at Sembach Air Base, Germany.

The Provider of the Year program recognizes excellence as an early childhood educator, commitment to educational achievement, enhancement of children’s learning and outreach to the community, according to a press release from USAFE Services.

Pearson was selected from more than 100 providers for her service to the RAF Mildenhall community and the children in her care, the release said.

22nd ASG to get new commander

VICENZA, Italy – Col. Virgil S.L. Williams will take command of the 22nd Area Support Group on Thursday and become its last commander in the process.

Williams, who most recently served as director of logistics, Multinational Force-Iraq, will take over from Col. Donald G. Drummer. Drummer is headed to Fort Eustis, Va., and the U.S. Army Transportation Center.

Williams will lead the Army’s lone area support group in Italy. It is responsible for base support operations in Vicenza and Camp Darby. All ASGs in Europe will transform into garrisons by October. Williams will then command the garrison in Vicenza. The ceremony is scheduled for 10 a.m. on Hoekstra Field.

Unborn baby and mother die

An administrative assistant at Army Community Services in Bamberg, Germany, died after pregnancy complications on Friday, according to an Army news release.

Kendra Watkins died in a local hospital a day after her unborn baby had been pronounced dead, the release stated. Her husband, Sgt. 1st Class Lamont T. Watkins, of the 793rd Military Police Battalion, was serving in Iraq at the time and arrived in Bamberg on Saturday.

Kendra Watkins, 29, who was from New Orleans, is also survived by her 7-year-old son, Lamont.

A memorial service is scheduled for 5 p.m. Wednesday at the Community Chapel on Warner Barracks.

Service for DODDS employee

A memorial service will be held in late August for a former DODDS employee who died from a stroke Friday.

Bonnie L. Swisher, 60, died in Spain near where she worked the past three years as a school nurse and educator at the Sevilla Elementary and Middle School.

Swisher has worked for the Department of Defense Dependents Schools for eight years, previously assigned to Izmir, Turkey.

A memorial service was already held at Moron Air Base, Spain, but another is scheduled by the Sevilla school after Aug. 29, when school is back in session.

For more information, e-mail Principal Steve Hain at, or call at DSN: 722-8464 or civilian (34) 95-584-8464.

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