BAUMHOLDER, Germany — A welcome home ceremony for the 1st Battalion, 94th Field Artillery Regiment will be Nov. 8 at the Strassburg Kaserne in Idar-Oberstein, where the unit is based.

Roughly 350 soldiers spent more than two months deployed to Romania for Joint Task Force East’s “Proof of Principle” exercise. While the exercise involved joint training with Romanian infantrymen, it also was a chance to demonstrate the viability of Romania as a training hub.

The battalion’s deployment, which began in August, concluded Monday with a closing ceremony in Romania.

The welcome home ceremony in is slated to begin at 4 p.m.

Beaman tapped for post at Allied Joint ForcesThe chief of naval operations, Adm. Gary Roughead, announced a new flag officer appointment for Europe.

Rear Adm. Gerald R. Beaman takes over as the new deputy chief of staff for operations at Allied Joint Forces Headquarters in Naples, Italy, relieving U.S. Army Brig. Gen. Richard McPhee.

Beaman has commanded Strike Force Training Pacific since June 2006. A native of Hammond, Ind., he joined the Navy in 1974, completing flight training a year later. According to his official biography, he left the Navy in 1981 to work as a special agent with the FBI, and returned to active duty in 1984. He has since been assigned to the Navy Fighter Weapons School (TOPGUN) in Miramar, Calif., serving as the maintenance office, operations officer and executive officer.

Beaman flew combat missions during Operation Desert Storm, and went on to earn a master’s degree in national security and strategic studies from the Naval War College. He begins his new job at Allied Joint Forces in January.

Scholarhsip program deadline is ThursdayThursday is the deadline for entering the the Veterans of Foreign Wars’ annual “Voice of Democracy” scholarship essay contest.

The scholarship program is an audio-essay contest for high-school students that annually provides more than $3 million in scholarships.

Winners at the local level receive scholarship money raised by their respective VFW posts. Those students go on to compete at the district level for additional scholarship money.

Finally, two Europe finalists square off to determine the region’s winner. That person receives an all-expenses-paid trip to the national competition in Washington. The national winner is awarded a $30,000 scholarship.

Last year, 279 Department of Defense Dependents Schools-Europe students participated.

The essay theme this year is “My Role in Honoring America’s Veterans.”

Students can enter by submitting the required entry form, along with their essay and recording to a local VFW Post. For more information, visit:

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