The Citizen - June 2021

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Vol. 50, No.7, June 2021

Serving the Greater Stuttgart Military Community


Commander’s Column: USAG Stuttgart welcomes new commander By Becca Castellano and Bardia Kahjenoori U.S. Army Garrison Stuttgart

U.S. Army Garrison Stuttgart welcomed Col. Matt Ziglar as its new commander during a change of command ceremony at Patch Barracks’ historic Washington Square, May 19.

Europe, and is uniquely qualified to carry on the garrison mission of providing for the welfare of nearly 28,000 service members, civilians and their families. “I feel that I know the community to some extent, having been able to visit seven or eight times TDY, and now being here early for this assignment,

U.S. Army Garrison Stuttgart Commander, Col. Matt Ziglar, addresses distinguished guests shortly after taking command of the garrison. Photo by Jason Johnston

He replaced Col. Jason Condrey, who led the garrison as Stuttgart and the rest of the world was struck by the COVID-19 pandemic. Now with the aid of vaccines and mitigation measures, Ziglar aims to transition the garrison to a post-coronavirus reality and a full-reopening. “The world has changed as a result of the pandemic, but at the end of the day, we will return to a new normal that everybody can look forward to,” he said. “Reopening dining in, shopping, travel and all of the services that we expect from the garrison is our first priority.” Ziglar has been in the community for the past year as a member of Special Operations Command

IMCOM-E Director Tommy R. Mize passes the U.S. Army Garrison Stuttgart colors to Col. Matt Ziglar, symbolizing the transfer of command. Photo by Jason Johnston


June 2021

it has absolutely prepared me — but I continue to learn every day,” he said. Ziglar commissioned into the Army after graduating from the University of Montana in 1998. Over the course of his 23-year career, he has held several positions including becoming the first officer in charge of the assessment and selection programs for civil affairs and psychological operations, Battalion executive officer for the 91st Civil Affairs Battalion (Airborne), Field Grade Assignment Officer and Branch Chief for Civil Affairs, and the Battalion Commander for the 92nd Civil Affairs Battalion (Airborne). It was his prior visits as a Civil Affairs Battalion

commander that made U.S. Army Garrison Stuttgart his first choice of potential assignments. “I was fortunate to visit here many times during my battalion command, and I knew that this would be a terrific place to bring my family,” said Ziglar. “I’m a big fan of the Stuttgart motto, ‘I am glad I live here.’ It absolutely captures both my personal opinion and my family’s,” he said. “Even in COVID times, we have valued the ability to live in the stairwell and be a part of the Stuttgart community.” Condrey, after passing the guidon to Ziglar and signifying the official transfer of command, also reflected on the motto, admitting he “had to scratch my head” at it upon taking command, considering “it was unlike any rally cry or call to arms in any unit I had served or been associated with.” But in the wake of the pandemic, “I had no idea how my understanding and the meaning of that phrase would evolve,” said Condrey, who recognized garrison staff, mission partners, and volunteers like those keeping commissary shelves stocked and critical services operational. “This community rose to the occasion in a way that constantly reminded me why I am glad we live here.” “I know that this community will embrace you and your daughters as you transition from being part of the community [and] into command,” said Condrey to Ziglar and his family. Condrey’s next assignment will be as Executive Officer of Installation Management Command in San Antonio, but he said the opportunity to lead the Stuttgart military community throughout COVID-19 will always be a highlight of his career. “In two years of command, I have not even scratched the surface on the knowledge, experience and talent that comes together to support this community every day,” said Condrey. “I continue to stand in amazement at how you made the improbable routine.”


TABLE OF UNITED STATES ARMY GARRISON STUTTGART Commander Col. Matt Zigler Senior Enlisted Adviser Command Sgt. Maj. Billy Norman Public Affairs Officer Larry Reilly Managing Editor Becca Castellano Contributors Marcus Fichtl, Bardia Khajenoori, Paul Hughes, Geoffrey Morris, Ch. (Col.) Bill Lovell USAG STUTTGART PUBLIC AFFAIRS OFFICE Building 2949, Panzer Kaserne


Army Post Office Mailing Address Unit 30401, APO AE 09107 German Mailing Address Panzer Kaserne Geb. 2949, 3rd Floor, Panzerstrasse, 70032 Böblingen

U.S. Marines with Marine Forces Europe and Africa (MARFOREUR/ AF) grapple during a Marine Corps Martial Arts Program training session on Panzer Kaserne, Stuttgart, May 25. Photo by Rey Ramon

Telephone 09641-70-5962485 DSN (314) 596-2485 Website Facebook USAGarrisonStuttgart/

Cover image: Members of the U.S. Army Garrison Stuttgart color guard present the colors during the Garrison change of command ceremony on May 19. Photo by Paul Hughes

PUBLISHER AdvantiPro GmbH Europaallee 3 67657 Kaiserslautern Telephone +49 (0) 631-30 3355 30 Website Managing Director Bret Helenius ADVERTISING IN THE CITIZEN Display Advertising Contact Jennifer Holdsworth Telephone +49 (0) 631-30 3355 37 Email The Stuttgart Citizen is an authorized magazine, produced in the interest of the U.S. Army community in Stuttgart by the U.S. Army-Garrison Stuttgart Public Affairs Office. Contents of the Citizen are not necessarily the official views of, or endorsed by, the U.S. Government or the Department of the Army. The Stuttgart Citizen is printed by AdvantiPro, a private firm in no way connected with the U.S. Govt., under exclusive written agreement with U.S. Army Stuttgart. It is published monthly using the offset method of reproduction and has a printed circulation of 5,000 copies. Everything advertised herein shall be made available for purchase, use or patronage without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, marital status, physical handicap, political affiliation, or any other non-merit factor of the purchaser, user or patron. The appearance of advertising herein, including inserts and supplements, does not constitute endorsement by the Dept. of the Army, or AdvantiPro, of the firms, products or services advertised. Unless otherwise indicated, all seven-digit phone numbers in The Stuttgart Citizen are DSN numbers and all longer numbers are civilian.

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Commander’s Column: USAG Stuttgart welcomes new commander

4 5 6&7 8 9 10 & 11

New arrivals at the library

12 & 13

The magic Alps, through the wizardry of the E-Bike

14 & 15

Flag Day: Old Glory stays resilient through new challenges

16 & 17

Culture Corner: Beat the summer heat in Stuttgart’s reopened museums


LRC Director rides off into the Panama sunset


The Big Question: How does diversity benefit the Stuttgart community?

Equality for All at USAG Stuttgart Kids vaccinate CSAT survey Chaplains Corner: Stolen Air LRC’s diverse workforce backgrounds create strong team bond

June 2021


New arrivals at the library By Geoffrey Morris U.S. Army Garrison Stuttgart, Book covers and descriptions courtesy of

The summer reading program is back and in-person this year! Registration is open now on and librarians will be on hand June 14, at the Patch library to help patrons sign up. The program will officially kick off June 15, with a flower pot decorating party where kids can plant seeds and watch their flowers bloom over the summer as they expand their imaginations through reading.

The library will host in-person events most days they are open. Monday’s activities will involve building with legos, with a special super legos day on Fridays for younger children. Storytime will be every Wednesday at 10:30 a.m. Larger events will be held Tuesday through Thursday so check the MWR facebook page for more information. Readers of all ages can join the summer reading program and collect points for the books they read before July 24. At the end of the summer, registered participants will be eligible to win one of several $100 amazon gift cards. If you’re looking for some great summer reading material, stop by the Patch library and check out one of the titles below. With hundreds of books, movies and games to choose from, there’s no reason to be bored this summer! The Story of Evolution in 25 Discoveries: The Evidence and the People Who Found it By Donald R. Prothero In The Story of Evolution in 25 Discoveries, Donald R. Prothero explores the most fascinating breakthroughs in piecing together the evidence for evolution. In twentyfive vignettes, he recounts the dramatic stories of the people who made crucial discoveries, placing each moment in the context of what it represented for the progress of science. He tackles topics like what it means to see evolution in action and what the many transitional fossils show us about evolution, following figures from Darwin to lesser-known researchers as they unlock the mysteries of the fossil record, the earth, and the universe. The book also features the stories of animal species strange and familiar, including humans―and our ties to some of our closest relatives and more distant cousins. Prothero’s wide-ranging tales showcase awe-inspiring and bizarre aspects of nature and the powerful insights they give us into the way that life works. Who is Maud Dixon? By Alexandra Andrews Florence Darrow is a low-level publishing employee who believes that she’s destined to be a famous writer. When she stumbles into a job as the assistant to the brilliant, enigmatic novelist known as Maud Dixon — whose true identity is a secret — it appears that the universe is finally providing Florence’s big chance. The arrangement seems perfect. Maud Dixon 4

June 2021

(whose real name, Florence discovers, is Helen Wilcox) can be prickly, but she is full of pointed wisdom — not only on how to write, but also on how to live. Florence quickly falls under Helen’s spell and eagerly accompanies her to Morocco, where Helen’s new novel is set. Amidst the colorful streets of Marrakesh and the wind-swept beaches of the coast, Florence’s life at last feels interesting enough to inspire a novel of her own. But when Florence wakes up in the hospital after a terrible car accident, with no memory of the previous night — and no sign of Helen — she’s tempted to take a shortcut. Instead of hiding in Helen’s shadow, why not upgrade into Helen’s life? Not to mention her bestselling pseudonym. Taut, twisty, and viciously entertaining, Who is Maud Dixon is a stylish psychological thriller about how far into the darkness you’re willing to go to claim the life you always wanted. The Unfinished Land By Greg Bear Reynard, a young apprentice, seeks release from the drudgery of working for his fisherman uncle in the English village of Southwold. His rare days off lead him to strange encounters - not just with press gangs hoping to fill English ships to fight the coming Spanish Armada, but strangers who seem to know him - one of whom casts a white shadow. The village’s ships are commandeered, and after a fierce battle at sea, Reynard finds himself the sole survivor of his uncle’s devastated hoy. For days he drifts, starving and dying of thirst, until he is rescued by a galleon, also lost - and both are propelled by a strange current to the unknown northern island of Thule. Here Reynard must meet his destiny in a violent clash between humans and gods. The Committed By Viet Thanh Nguyen The long-awaited follow-up to the Pulitzer Prizewinning The Sympathizer, which has sold more than one million copies worldwide, The Committed follows the man of two minds as he arrives in Paris in the early 1980s with his blood brother Bon. The pair try to overcome their pasts and ensure their futures by engaging in capitalism in one of its purest forms: drug dealing. Traumatized by his reeducation at the hands of his former best friend, Man, and struggling to assimilate into French culture, the Sympathizer finds Paris both seductive and disturbing. As he falls in with a group of left-wing intellectuals whom he meets at dinner parties given by his French Vietnamese “aunt,” he finds stimulation for his mind but also customers for his narcotic merchandise.

But the new life he is making has perils he has not foreseen, whether the self-torture of addiction, the authoritarianism of a state locked in a colonial mindset, or the seeming paradox of how to reunite his two closest friends whose worldviews put them in absolute opposition. The Sympathizer will need all his wits, resourcefulness, and moral flexibility if he is to prevail. Both highly suspenseful and existential, The Committed is a blistering portrayal of commitment and betrayal that will cement Viet Thanh Nguyen’s position in the firmament of American letters. Land: How the Hunger for Ownership Shaped the Modern World By Simon Winchester The author of The Professor and the Madman, The Map That Changed the World, and The Perfectionists explores the notion of property - bought, earned, or received; in Europe, Africa, North America, or the South Pacific - through human history, how it has shaped us and what it will mean for our future. Land - whether meadow or mountainside, desert or peat bog, parkland or pasture, suburb or city - is central to our existence. It quite literally underlies and underpins everything. Employing the keen intellect, insatiable curiosity, and narrative verve that are the foundations of his previous bestselling works, Simon Winchester examines what we human beings are doing - and have done - with the billions of acres that together make up the solid surface of our planet. Here, Winchester examines in depth how we acquire land, how we steward it, how and why we fight over it, and finally, how we can, and on occasion do, come to share it. Ultimately, he confronts the essential question: who actually owns the world’s land - and why does it matter? Organic Chemistry I For Dummies by Arthur Winter The easy way to take the confusion out of organic chemistry Organic chemistry has a long-standing reputation as a difficult course. Organic Chemistry I For Dummies takes a simple approach to the topic, allowing you to grasp concepts at your own pace. This fun, easy-to-understand guide explains the basic principles of organic chemistry in simple terms, providing insight into the language of organic chemists, the major classes of compounds, and top trouble spots. You’ll also get the nuts and bolts of tackling organic chemistry problems, from knowing where to start to spotting sneaky tricks that professors like to incorporate. • Refreshed example equations • New explanations and practical examples that reflect today’s teaching methods • Fully worked-out organic chemistry problems


A chaplain delivers a prayer at the beginning of the 2020 Equality for All 5k walk or run on Patch Barracks. Photo by Hyla Melloy


Tessa Moss-Beaman leads community members on Panzer Kaserne in a song to kick off the 2020 Equality for All 5k walk or run. Photo by Rick Scavetta

Equality for All at USAG Stuttgart By Becca Castellano U.S. Army Garrison Stuttgart

U.S. Army Garrison Stuttgart will host an “Equality for All” event on Panzer Kaserne’s parade field, June 19, at 11 a.m. Community members can join together in a 5k walk or run around Panzer Kaserne to show their support for equality.

Stuttgart’s Equal Opportunity Advisor, Sgt. 1st Class Pierre Boynton, said the gathering is designed to encourage meaningful dialogue regarding issues of gender, age, race, color, religion and sexual orientation. “The DOD sets monthly observances to highlight the diversity of our military, and this event is aimed at supporting those groups who are protected from discrimination,” said Boynton. “We want the community to come out and stand together against those ideals and beliefs that would harm or hold back our teammates.” Last year’s event rose out of a global movement against racism. Sparked by the murder of George Floyd in May, it provided an outlet for Stuttgart community members to express their frustration against discrimination. Boynton said the goal this year is to continue that discussion in a positive way and to



pave a path toward an Army free of prejudice. turnout was impressive considering COVID-19 restric“In the Army’s core values, we pledge to treat tions limited gathering sizes, and she hopes to attend others with dignity and respect, and to again this year. hold others to the same standards,” he “People were “I think it showed how supportive said. “This event reinforces those val- happy to be able of each other this community is,” ues and creates an inclusive front. We added. “But discrimination still to come together she hope everyone comes out to join us.” happens in the military, so we need The Equality for All event also coin- again amid to keep holding these events to send cides with Juneteenth. A celebration all the chaos of the message that we won’t tolerate it of Black emancipation that began in COVID, and join anymore.” Texas shortly after the remnants of the All community members are invited together for such to join Confederacy there were defeated. The and walk or run the 5k. COVID-19 localized celebration soon became a an important mitigation measures will be in place for national celebration as Black Americans topic,...” those attending in person, and events spread across the U.S. during the Great will be livestreamed for those wanting Migration. to join in from home. Last year, around 600 participants across four different locations gathered for the event. This year, To learn more or volunteer at the Equality for All because of the large percentage of the community event, contact the equal opportunity advisor at receiving the COVID-19 vaccine, a larger gathering 09641-70-596-3652. in one location will be allowed. A Saturday scheduling for the event hopes to promote maximum participation. “People were happy to be able to come together again amid all the chaos of COVID, and join together for such an important topic” said event attendee Sarah Evans. “I think that the community really needed to be able to gather during those difficult times.” Evans said last year’s


Phone: 0163 556 33 33 June 2021


KIDS VACCINATE Story and photos by Marcus Fichtl U.S. Army Garrison Stuttgart

when the first needles hit shoulders at the Stuttgart Army Health Clinic, December 31st.

U.S. Army Garrison Stuttgart continued its path to normalcy as hundreds of kids received their first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine, May 22.

“We’ve vaccinated adults, we’ve vaccinated high risk – the question was, when are we going to start vaccinating kids,” said Lt. Col. David McGurk, the garrison’s COVID-19 vaccination liaison. That answer, represented by a line that stretched a quarter mile from the makeshift vaccination clinic inside Patch Barracks’ community center to the post gym, was an enthusiastic “today.”

Saturday’s vaccine drive was aimed to get a majority of the roughly 1,500 kids aged 12 to 17, here, on the path toward immunity. It’s the nearculmination of a vaccination campaign that began

McGurk said that while the vaccination rate was high for the adults working on the garrison, the large population of kids on post was still a significant vulnerability for the community. But with the recent arrival of the Pfizer vaccine to the clinic, and a May 10 FDA ruling stating that kids as young as 12 could receive the Pfizer vaccine, McGurk said they were “seizing on an opportunity” to patch that vulnerability. McGurk added they had also set aside Jansen and Moderna vaccines for parents who hadn’t had an


Hauptstr. 189 b • 70563 Stuttgart • Outside Patch Barracks Telephone: +49 (0)711-6204885 • Find us on Facebook: Auto Pieper Volvo Military Sales 6

June 2021


Hundreds of families line up for the COVID-19 vaccine at Patch Barracks.


Christian Fischer, 15, receives his COVID-19 vaccine at Patch Barracks.


Medics from Stuttgart Army Health Clinic, prepare vials of COVID-19 vaccines for a vaccine drive aimed at 12 to 17-year-olds.

agreed with McGurk’s sentiments. Watson said she was excited for a return to normalcy, and most importantly, the travel. “I want to go to Paris, France,” she said. Christian Fischer, 15, said contributing to Stuttgart’s herd immunity motivated him to receive his vaccine. “I did this for the safety of other and the welfare of the community,” he said. Seventeen-year-old Dana Gack when asked if the hour-long wait for the shot was worth it, responded with an enthusiastic, “oh yea!” For any kid, who wasn’t able to attend Saturday’s vaccine drive, McGurk said there will be alternate events planned in the near future. “At the end of the day the goal is to get everyone vaccinated,” McGurk said. For more information on vaccinations or COVID-19 policies in the Stuttgart military community, please visit and download the USAG Stuttgart app.

opportunity to vaccinate, but were bringing their kids in Saturday. While the health and safety of the Stuttgart military community is at the forefront of every decision made regarding vaccinations and local mitigation measures, McGurk said there were benefits of the vaccine that stretched beyond the walls of the garrison. “Beside the fact that vaccinating everyone in the community creates a safe a community, it also provides parents and guardians with the flexibility to take advantage of the easing of restrictions in Europe for those who have been vaccinated,” he said. Asia Watson, 17 and heading into her senior year at Stuttgart High School,

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June 2021



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U.S. Army Garrison Stuttgart wants to develop a deeper understanding of issues that relate to community members’ thoughts on quality of life, health, safety, and readiness through the Community Strengths and Themes Assessment. This installation-wide survey is open until June 30, and aims to assess our quality of life, and how we can improve community health, wellness, readiness, and resiliency. Andy Munsterman, USAG Stuttgart’s Community Readiness & Resilience Integrator, explained the importance of the survey responses to the mission of the Commander’s Ready and Resilient Council.

Q: What exactly is the Commander’s Ready and Resilient Council or CR2C? A: The Commander’s Ready and Resilient Council is a forum that meets quarterly to look at the community health in five areas that are important to the community. These areas include physical, emotional, spiritual, family, and social health. The CR2C is composed of leaders who have the resources to support the community in focused areas in terms of community health. For Stuttgart, the CR2C Senior Responsible Officer is Maj. Gen Joe Jarrard. He provides leadership and oversight for our five Working Groups:

Q: What is the role of the working groups? A: We have the Physical and Psychological Working Group that covers Medical, Dental, and Behavioral Health, as well as the Army Wellness Center and the Fitness Center. We also have the Family and Social Working groups that look at how we support

our Families in Stuttgart and finally we have the Spiritual Working Group that looks at the Spiritual/Religious health of our community, as well as moral-ethical training.

Q: What can you tell us about the survey? A: The purpose of this installation-wide survey is to assess our quality of life, and how we can improve community health, wellness, readiness, and resiliency. This is especially relevant since COVID has really changed our community. The Survey only takes about 10 minutes, but will provide the Commander’s Ready and Resilient Council valuable information on areas we can focus on to promote health across the board.

Q: If this survey is given every two years, why are we taking it again in 2021 if we completed it in 2020? A: This past year has been difficult for most of us so in an effort to measure the impact of COVID on our community, and to be a part of USAREUR-AF wide assessment, we are offering the survey again.

Q: Can you give us an example of how last year’s survey impacted the community? A: In response to last year’s results, we have increased enrollment in our Civilian Fitness Program, created a bi-annual Behavioral Health Summit (formerly known as the Suicide Symposium) to address stigma and the impact of mental health treatment on one's career, and also increased financial readiness by saving our community 205k through debt reduction with the ACS Financial Readiness program. Our Family Life Chaplain has also worked with our EAP to make on site "resiliency visits to help build awareness of mental health resources and get to know the community. Lastly, the CR2I and PAIO created and published a telework survey to assess work-life balance which was also identified as a major issue in the family and social pillars of the CSTA. These efforts were all made possible due to the needs identified by the CSTA.

Q: How can community members take the CSTA survey? A: The CSTA Survey can be accessed on The Survey is open now, and will be available until June 30. Our goal is to have about 400 people take part. We would love it if community members can take the survey and continue to help us make Stuttgart a great place to live, work, and raise families! 8

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Chaplain’s Corner:

Stolen Air


Photo by CC7/

Chaplain (Col.) Bill Lovell USAG Stuttgart Chaplain





*This fable was based upon some real life events over 15 years ago and the offending party has since repented and never conducted themselves in such a manner since….at least that’s their story and I’m…er, uh….they’re sticking to it.

ar e

And then one day, a HQ’s staff officer was running late to work and rather than go the 100 additional meters to a vacant parking lot, he decided to park in the Chaplain’s spot….and the plague of 4 flat tires struck upon his vehicle, but not before the staff officer noticed the slowly depressing tires from his office window and intervened. Indignant, the staff officer called the MPs and wanted to exact justice upon the Chaplain for having the audacity to approach his vehicle in such a fashion….for which the MPs, desperately trying not to chuckle, could not see fit to write a citation because no damage was technically done to the vehicle and the staff officer had technically parked in a spot not his own. Fuming, the staff officer went back to his office, calmed down and after some time, the Chaplain approached him. The staff officer calmly said “I was wrong for parking in your space, but you have to admit that what you did was vandalism.” The Chaplain thought for a moment, then said, “I was wrong for what I did, it was immature. But I think you are wrong about vandalism…I think we were both guilty of theft…you stole the air that occupied the space where my vehicle

would normally be parked and I stole the air from inside your tires.”* The commandment “You shall not steal” is not the mere taking of property. It is taking something, or assuming something belongs to you, that is not yours to take or assume. It is a basic respect for another person’s right to retain their property, rights, dignity, etc.

Yo u

Once upon a time, on a magical military post in the universe, far, far away, a unit Chaplain got annoyed at the consistent taking of his designated parking space. While all the other designated spaces were respected, the Chaplain’s parking space was utilized daily by late-arriving staff to the HQ’s building. Not being able to locate the offending party in order to politely ask them to depart, the Chaplain unwisely decided to teach the offending party a lesson. And the evil little Chaplain, like the one you see on cartoons, complete with pitchfork and horns coming out of his head, gave the Chaplain the idea to unscrew the valve caps off of the offending party’s tires and place a small pebble inside the cap, then replace the cap back onto the valve. The ensuing action slowly leaked the car’s tires over a period of time until they were completely drained of pressure and went flat. His false sense of justice from the evil little Chaplain was “if you like my parking space so much, then you will have it a little longer than expected.” After 2 vehicles “magically” lost all of the pressure in their tires by parking in the Chaplain’s spot, the word got out and staff began to stop using the parking space.

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June 2021




In nearly every culture, relationships are often formed over food, shared around a table. For the “family” of employees who make up the Motor Transportation Pool office at the Stuttgart Army Airfield, the break room table is more than just a place to eat lunch: it is a place to share life experiences and traditions.

Cihan Oruzbeyi, the office’s administrative assistant, never misses an opportunity to swap stories with anyone willing to listen over a few glasses of Turkish Tea. “One of my favorite meals is Tarhana,” he said. “In my province of Turkey, we do not have tables; we sit on the floor around a giant pan of this ‘poor man’s soup,’ and everyone has a spoon and we eat from the same bowl. When you eat it, you taste the poorness but also the tradition and unity of Turkey.” Oruzbeyi’s Turkey is just one of 19 different nations represented within the Logistics Readiness Command’s workforce, which the TMP office falls under. Sri Lanka became another nationality when Kajendran Vasanthakumar joined the organization in 2016. Vasanthakumar arrived in Germany as a refugee in 2011. Ten jobs and a half-decade later he landed a position as a warehouse technician with the LRC. Since 2016, he’s been promoted twice, and is now the office’s purchasing agent. In those five years, no one on post has received more positive customer comments, which earned Vasanthakumar the coveted B405th Army Field Support Brigade challenge coin from the brigade commander who overseas LRC Stuttgart from Kaiserslautern. While Vasanthakumar was happy to receive the coin, that leadership outside of Stuttgart knew him by name is what truly surprised and impressed him. Oruzbeyi said that’s just how things work at LRC Stuttgart – people care. “The leadership in LRC take the time to know their people and see their potential,” he said. In my first four years with this organization, they taught me how to mentor and build a team and a family at work.” Oruzbeyi started his career as a bus driver in 2018, but jumped at the chance to cross train into an administrative role. He believes that chance came because leadership went out of their way to visit the bus drivers, and treated him and his colleagues as more than just some temporary, foreign employees. “I had no business with the top office as a driver, but they always make the time to come speak with all of their people,” he said. “I had no experience working in an office at all, it was a risk for them to take me into that setting, but they saw the potential and invested in me. I couldn’t be happier.” 10

June 2021

Photo by Syda Productions/

LRC's former director, Craig Shields, retired after 38 years of service last month, but during his four years leading the Stuttgart team, he wanted to make Oruzbeyi’s story the expectation and not the exception. The former Soldier understood that those who worked hard deserved more than respect, they deserved an opportunity. “I started my career in Germany in 1983 as an E1 in the Army. I was supposed to be a mechanic but someone over heard my conversational German, and I ended up working as a linguist on a German border crossing camp,” he said. “I went from an E1 to an E5 in my first nine months because I was in the right place at the right time.” Shields said Germany and the U.S. Army has changed a lot since his time as a private in 83’. He believes in the years since the Berlin Wall fell, more people are willing to stake out a new life away from home, and for the 108 employees and their 19 nationalities in LRC, he hopes they found a family. “The workforce structure and ethnic background of the US installations in Germany where I served were very homogeneous,” said Shields. “Today, our workplace constantly challenges the values and worldview of our employees and keeps us open-minded.” As the Director of Stuttgart’s LRC division, Shields enjoyed working with many different nationalities and learning their traditions. He held monthly ethnic observances where employees could share food, traditions, and history from their native country.

He also went out of his way to learn conversational phrases like “good morning” and “how are you?” in all his employees' native languages. A tip he said built rapport and opened dialogue within the team. It is also a tip Oruzbeyi has chosen to implement in the TMP office as well. “When you can greet someone in their native tongue, it shows that you are open minded and willing to try and understand their views and beliefs,” said Oruzbeyi. “That's something I learned from my mentor, and I now know how to hold a basic conversation in several different languages.”

Enitan Olu-Ajayi began her career with the Logistics Readiness Command in 2017 after several years of applying to work for the Army. Photo by Becca Castellano

Kajendran Vasanthakumar began his career with Stuttgart’s Logistics Readiness Command in 2016. In five years he has advanced to the position of purchasing agent. Photo by Becca Castellano

Cihan Oruzbeyi, the Transportaion Motor Pool Office’s administrative assistant, pours a cup of Turkish Tea. Photo by Becca Castellano

The Transportation Motor Pool Office’s break room serves as an area for employees to eat, rest and bond. Photo by Becca Castellano

The Stuttgart Logistics Readiness Command is comprised of 108 employees from 19 different countries. Many of those employees work in the Transportation Motor Pool Office at the Army airfield. Photo by Becca Castellano

Oruzbeyi said LRC's efforts to celebrate each nationality within its workforce has created an atmosphere of respect, inclusion, and fun for its employees who operate vital community services like the driver’s license office, official government travel coordination and transportation. They make us feel welcome here,” said Enitan Olu-Ajayi, a Lead Quality and Control specialist with LRC. “I wake up every morning excited to go to work because I have a sense of belonging and I feel respected.” Olu-Ajayi moved from her home country of Nigeria to Stuttgart in 2009. She applied to work for the U.S. government so many times she lost count. Finally, in 2017, she got a call for a temporary position in contracting on Kelley Barracks. "I couldn’t believe it, I will always cherish that moment,” she said. “I mean who would have thought, coming to Europe as a foreigner that I would get to end up working for the U.S. government. It's been a great honor.”

Six months into her temporary position, Olu-Ajayi landed a permanent job in Quality Control, where she takes pride in serving as a stress-relieving buffer between community members leaving Stuttgart and the moving companies shipping their goods. She hopes to continue that role for many years to come. “Everybody wants to climb the ladder or be a boss, but there are other priorities that come first,” she added. “It’s not about the money when you are in an environment where you don’t feel like you're working and you enjoy what you're doing. I can only hope to be here for a long time to come.” Olu-Ajayi, Oruzbeyi and Vasanthakumar agree that like any close family, they have their disagreements. But it is their varied perspectives that bridge the gap in the end. Our strength is our ability to understand that everybody can see something differently, but we can all still be right. Learning from each other instead of trying to change each other only makes us stronger and better suited to serve our customers,” said Olu-Ajayi. June 2021


The magic Alps, through the wizardry of the E-Bike Story and photos by Paul Hughes USAG Stuttgart Public Affairs

The Swiss Alps provide a wild and thrilling playground for adrenaline - filled adventure in both winter and summer. After the skiers hang up their mittens, fields of flowers and rolling green hills beneath the snow - capped mountains provide a breathtaking backdrop for cycling enthusiasts.

The Swiss Alps provide a wild and thrilling playground for adrenaline filled adventure in both winter and summer. After the skiers hang up their mittens, fields of flowers and rolling green hills beneath the snow capped mountains provide a breathtaking backdrop for cycling enthusiasts. Ski resorts in Switzerland have found new ways to continue making money after the snow melts by turning ski runs into downhill mountain bike courses, and their access roads into electric bike tour routes during the warmer months. The beautiful area of Flims/Laax in Switzerland is a 3.5 hour drive south of Stuttgart, and is packed with adventures.

Author Paul Hughes takes a break for a photo on the 1,000ft ascent from Valendas Sagogn railway station back to the village of Laax.






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If you are more of an explorer than a thrill seeker, and you prefer a little help with your exercise, electric biking may be for you. There are several perfectly planned e-bike specific trails in the area to allow you to get the most out of your bike. They take you to the very top of the mountains and back within the capacity of your battery. There is something uniquely freeing and exhilarating about being pushed up a sheer mountain by electric magic. An e-bike gives you the freedom to choose your adventure based on where you want to go and not where your legs can take you. You cover the miles faster, with less effort, but the beauty and reward of reaching the top of a mountain are just the same. If you are craving the white knuckle thrills of downhill riding, then you can take the same ski lifts that ferried skiers to the peaks in winter to the top of several technical trails carved into the mountains. These trails descend against the backdrop of some of the

finest mountain biking views in the world. Trails such as the Never-End-Trail, a 4.5-mile run with jumps, drops and twists are best attempted by those with moderate experience of downhill riding. The Runca Trail is more suitable for

The view from the top – after a 3,000ft climb on an e-bike, the view is your reward. Located on the climb towards Alp Dadens.

beginner mountain bikers with more moderate experience. Do note that when they say it is a beginner level trail, the skill required indicates that they mean beginner on downhill trails, as opposed to a beginner mountain biker.

THE SWISS “GRAND CANYON” A perfect Swiss adventure should combine riding and hiking, and a trip to the “Swiss Grand Canyon”

The Rhine gorge between Reichenau and Ilanz, you can also ride this route by train.

or Rheinschlucht, does just that. Start your day by descending the few miles from the Flims/Laax area to the Valendas Sagogn railway station at the bottom of the canyon. Lock your bike

is up and head on foot toward Reichenau. This easy hiking path cuts along the river through an incredible gorge with sheer cliffs. The beaches along the river make for a perfect spot for a picnic or a BBQ. The tourism office even supplies chopped wood at permanent fire pits along the way! Upon arriving at the Versam Safien train station after three miles or so, hop aboard the train and ride the railway back along the route you just explored for another unique viewpoint. Then, if you’ve had enough walking, simply get off at the station and collect your bikes. However, if you want to go on, keep traveling on the train to Llanz, where you can pause for lunch before hiking back along the river to collect your bikes. This will add another ten miles to your journey. Whatever hike you prefer, preserve some strength, because the climb from the floor of the canyon back to Laax is around 1,000ft. Although your e-bike motor will enable you to make quick work of the hills, make no mistake, it’s not a free ride – you’ll be earning your dinner. Your wallet is also something that will undergo its own workout. Switzerland is not a cheap vacation. Accommodation, food and gas are all very expensive compared to Germany or Austria. For example, a basic lunch out for your family could cost around 100 Euros ($122.) Fortunately, this makes the hike back to your bike a bit easier now that your wallet is lighter.

ACCOMODATION In terms of where to stay, you have countless choices in the region, from hotels to campsites. In

most hotels, there are facilities where you can enjoy a sauna or swim in the spa to relax your aching muscles. If you’re taking your own bikes (e-bike or not) many hotels provide safe storage, charge points and bike wash stations. If you want to rent bikes, it will cost around 60 euro ($75) a day and include a helmet. Riders must be 16 or over. If electric biking is something you’ve been dying to try, or something you already love doing, then consider visiting the Swiss Alps this summer. Everything you need to know about accommodation, rental and riding can be found at Before booking any travel, check your unit’s travel policy as well as COVID-19 restrictions on entering Switzerland and returning to Germany. For details on Swiss tourism, visit ( and check out for the latest information on returning to Germany. Try before buying: Want to try biking without committing to buying one? You can rent bikes from Family & MWR for a local day out cycling in Stuttgart.

Bike commuting: Stuttgart is a bike-friendly city and commuting between Patch, Panzer and Kelley can take as little as 30 minutes by bike, escaping the lengthy roadworks currently afflicting our area.

Flag Day: Old Glory stays resilient through new challenges

1 By Bardia Khajenoori U.S. Army Garrison Stuttgart

Everyone in the Army knows that on June 14th, 1775, the world’s premier landfighting force was born, but what fewer people know is that two years later — on the same day — the Second Continental Congress would authorize the flag those newly minted Soldiers would fight under.

The flag of the United States was designed to recognize the nation’s past as well as its aspirations for the future. The 1777 resolution established the pattern of alternating red and white stripes representing the original thirteen colonies, and the use of stars to represent each individual state in the union. The choice of colors is symbolic as well — red to represent valor and hardness, white for purity and innocence, and blue to stand for vigilance, perseverance and justice. But for the first half of the country’s history, celebrations of the flag and its origin were sporadic. The earliest mention of the term “Flag Day” was an observance at Hartford, Connecticut in 1861. It wasn’t until 1916, after a proclamation from President Woodrow Wilson, that Flag Day became officially recognized. “This flag which we honor and under which we serve is the emblem of our

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unity, our power, our thought and purpose as a nation,” wrote Wilson. “It is the embodiment of the history of the United States.” Now, nearly a hundred years later, people like Lt. Col. Matthew Holmes, scoutmaster of Boy Scout Troop 44, and his scouts continue to act as custodians of those Flag Day traditions. Each meeting begins with the presentation of the U.S. and scout flags in a synchronized, formal ceremony led by a ‘flag detail’ whose members are responsible for properly retiring the colors, said Holmes. Members of the troop rotate through flag detail responsibilities, he added, so everyone learns how to fold the flag properly and follow protocol. “We have discussions about why the flag is important, and why it’s important that the flag is treated respectfully,” said Holmes, whose troop recently participated in a retreat ceremony with members of the 1st Battalion, 10th Special Forces Group (Airborne) on Panzer Kaserne. Since most of his scouts come from military-affiliated families, Holmes said, respect for the flag is often “hardwired into them from the beginning.” “I feel these scouts, maybe more than others, really understand the importance. They see it on their fathers’ and mothers’ uniforms every day,” said Holmes. “It’s a very easy thing to talk about, a very easy thing to share [with them].” Holmes said that those discussions on respect for the U.S. flag also teach consideration for other nations and communities — an aspect he personally appreciates. “It’s a great opportunity to kind of open their aperture a little bit,” he said. Holidays are often an opportunity to reflect on something in particular, said Holmes, and Flag Day can be a time to ponder the values individuals bestow on the flag, and what it means to them. “It’s nice to stop and think about the power the flag has,” Holmes said. “The power of what symbolism has on our lives, and how it motivates our actions and how it motivates our country.”

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A Soldier unfurls a U.S. flag at Robinson.

A Soldier and local children raise a flag at Robinson Barracks.


A Soldier and local children unfurl “Old Glory.”


Local children pay their respects to the U.S. flag.

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Beat the summer heat in Stuttgart’s reopened museums Story and photos by Bardia Khajenoori U.S. Army Garrison Stuttgart

From modern art to luxury cars and dinosaurs to local wine, Stuttgart’s museums offer something for everyone. They’re not only great places to explore local history, but also to escape some of the hottest summer days— well, just not on Mondays (the museums are closed).

Most are welcoming back visitors for the first time in months after having spent months closed due to COVID restrictions. Visits may require pre-booking a timeslot and/or proof of vaccination or negative test result, so check the museum’s website and call ahead for the most

2 It weaves in social, political, and technological changes happening globally alongside design innovations, and integrates exhibition themes into the building itself; for example, the display area showcasing new safety features has walls made of airbag material. Porsche Museum: A striking building directly adjacent to an S-Bahn station (Neuwirtshaus – Porscheplatz) houses dozens of Porsche vehicles from all periods of the company’s history, including early models and modern racecars. Focus is placed on design and technical innovation. Around 80 cars are on display at any given time, as well as a number of interactive experiences. Outside of COVID times, both companies offer guided factory tours.


1 current requirements before making a trip out. You may also be asked for personal details like a phone number or an address for the purposes of contact tracing. All museums are located in Stuttgart unless otherwise noted.

City Museum Stuttgart (Stadtmuseum Stuttgart, in the StadtPalais): The permanent exhibition at this free museum tells the story of Stuttgart and its people from the 1700s through the present day. English translations are abundant in the exhibition. The building itself, centrally located at Charlottenplatz, was formerly the home of the last king of Württemberg, and functioned as the city’s postwar library until 2011. Linden Museum: The city’s museum of world cultures has various permanent exhibitions revolving around a multitude of artifacts from different eras and civilizations. A special exhibition running through next year examines connections between colonialism, the region of Württemberg, and the museum itself. Audio guides available in English. Württemberg State Museum (Landesmuseum Württemberg): Housed in Stuttgart’s Altes Schloss (Old Castle), the origins of this free museum date back to the “cabinet of curiosities” maintained by 15th-century dukes. Various pieces


Mercedes Benz-Museum: Covering the development of not only the brand, but the automobile itself, its nine levels provide plenty of engaging information even for people who may not normally be interested in a car museum.


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of antiquity present the history of the region dating from the Stone Age to the Kingdom of Württemberg. An English audio guide is available. A special exhibition on fashion (subject to an entry charge) has been extended through April 2022 and is also available to explore for free on the museum’s website and the Google Arts and Culture website/app.

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Staatsgalerie Stuttgart: The collection of the State Gallery spans thousands of works from the fourteenth century to the present day, with a diverse array of styles. Everything from Renaissance art to French impressionism and American pop art can be found within its walls. Entry to the permanent collection is free on Wednesdays. Its “new” building, completed in 1984, is itself a work of art—it was tied for fifth in a 2010 survey to find the most important structures completed in the previous 40 years. Kunstmuseum Stuttgart (Modern Art Museum): Those with a preference for modern and contemporary art will feel right at home at the Kunstmuseum, housed





Mercedes Museum: This museum contains over 1,500 exhibits in its nine levels. (Photos © Daimler AG) Staatsgalerie: The Staatsgalerie is home to 800 years worth of art, with this triptych standing just rooms away from pieces by Claude Monet and Jackson Pollock.


Strassenbahnwelt: The Streetcar Museum, seen here during an anniversary event in 2018, offers a ride through local public transportation history. Stadtmuseum: An interactive display at Stuttgart’s city museum allows visitors to delve more deeply into the history of specific topics, buildings, or traditions of their choosing.

Altes Schloss: Concerts and other events are often held in the striking courtyard of the Altes Schloss.

in the distinctive glass cube at Schlossplatz, the main square. Find an excellent view of the square and surrounding area by going to the top floor, near the entrance to the restaurant (no ticket required). Schauwerk Sindelfingen: A beautifully repurposed former production facility of a Sindelfingen-based refrigeration and air conditioning multinational plays host to a large collection of contemporary art. A special exhibition by acclaimed British sculptor Anthony Gormley, entitled “Learning to Be,” opens in mid-June. Museum Ritter (Waldenbuch): Chocoholics may be disappointed to learn that the Museum Ritter, located at the Ritter Sport complex, houses an impressive collection of geometric abstract art rather than tributes to their favorite sweet. Nevertheless, a relatively small but enjoyable free exhibition about the history of Ritter Sport and the chocolate making process is housed above the factory store in the same building. A specially marked pathway from the museum provides a short hike into the tranquility of the adjoining Schönbuch Nature Park.


The State Museum of Natural History: Stuttgart is housed in two locations on opposite sides of Rosenstein Park: the Museum am Löwentor (identifiable by the large dinosaurs outside) is home to the well-known paleontology collection, while Schloss Rosenstein focuses more on general natural history, biology, and ecology.


from around the world. An onsite restaurant and biergarten naturally offers a mix of pork dishes, as well as other Swabian delights. Tram Museum (Strassen-bahnwelt): Explore more than 150 years’ worth of local transportation history at the Tram Museum in Bad Cannstatt (a converted depot) amidst dozens of trams from different periods of history, some of which can be entered or viewed from underneath. Among the souvenirs for sale at the front desk are socks in the style of the Stuttgart U-Bahn seat pattern. On Sundays, a historic tram operates between the TV tower (Ruhbank Fernsehturm stop) and the Tram Museum. Ticket prices and schedules are found at the museum website. Weissenhof Museum in the Le Corbusier House: Anyone with an interest in architecture and design will enjoy a visit to this home designed by Le Corbusier, which enjoys UNESCO World Heritage status as one of his 17 most innovative works across the globe. The house itself is one of several surviving buildings of the Weissenhof Estate, created for a 1927 building exhibition with contributions from some of the most well-known architects and designers in history. This overview is provided as a courtesy to help community members explore local culture and does not imply federal endorsement.


Carl-Zeiss Planetarium: The Planetarium, located next to the main train station, offers a selection of mostly science and education-focused presentations, along with music-related special events. Their website offers schedules, contact information, and an updated list of sold-out presentations, as reservations are

4 highly recommended. Presentations can be simulcast in English with the use of a receiver and headset that can be borrowed at no charge, or through a downloadable mobile app with your own headphones. Viniculture Museum (Wein-baumuseum): Stuttgart is a winemaking town, and the history and unique characteristics of the region’s viniculture is on full display at this museum located in the small hilltop district of Ulbach. Of course, tasting opportunities are also available. A visit to the museum should also include a stop at the nearby Württemberg Mausoleum (Grabkapelle auf dem Württemberg). The tombs of the area’s longest serving and most influential king, Wilhelm I of Württemberg, and his wife, Grand Duchess Katharina Pawlowna, are located inside the monument, which is perched on an exposed hilltop above a sea of vineyards. Pig Museum: One of Stuttgart’s most unique museums, and located inside the former administration building of the city’s main slaughterhouse, the Pig Museum is home to 25 themed rooms and more than 50,000 pig-related exhibits June 2021


LRC Director rides off into the Panama sunset By Cameron Porter 405th AFSB Public Affairs Office

After nearly four decades of service, Craig and Marion Marita Shields will soon be moving from Germany, where Craig serves as the director of the 405th Army Field Support Brigade’s Logistics Readiness Center Stuttgart, to the beautiful Latin American country of Panama.

Craig plans to relax and enjoy his retirement while Marion Marita, a freelance systems consultant and book author, has her sights set on opening an art gallery featuring her paintings. They have a very good retirement plan in Panama, especially if you’re over 55, Shields said. And it’s an interesting culture. The climate is very agreeable with no hurricanes. “When you make a decision to retire, you want to do something that takes you out of the rotation. We wanted a change of pace and scenery,” Shield said. “Panama provides this.” “In the past, I’ve sometimes jumped with no green light and I’ve always landed safely,” Shields said. “This time I’m supporting my wife’s wishes. We prayed on it, and it’s in God’s hands so I know it will all work out.” What hopes for an amazing future on the horizon, the Shields family also closes the door on more than 37 years of service with the Army. Starting out as a wheeled-vehicle mechanic in Germany in 1983 and completing his Army career as the LRC director for a community of about 29,000, Shields leaves behind a legacy of faithful, selfless service. “While serving in the Army, I think I’ve had

between 12 and 15 jobs,” said Shields, who among others has served as an operations noncommissioned officer, personnel and administration NCO, brigade maintenance NCO, corps maintenance supervisor, German-American liaison officer, plans and operations chief, brigade contract manager and assistant program manager “I even served as a German and Russian linguist at a German Border Camp during the Cold War,” said Shields, who is originally from Baltimore. “You don’t get that kind of experience anywhere else. It’s been very fulfilling, and there’s been tons of opportunities that otherwise wouldn’t have been possible in the civilian world,” said Shields who retired from active-duty Army status as a senior NCO after nearly 23 years. Shields, who also served 14 years as an Army civilian employee, has done even more during his free time. Outside of work, he’s a gardener and a deep-sea diver; he was one of Germany’s top DJs at one point, and he coached three Golden Gloves boxing champions, a U.S. Olympian runner-up finalist and the third female to ever be nominated for the All-Army Boxing Team. With retirement on the Panamanian horizon, Shields said he’s going to miss the people, the mission and the opportunities the most. “This job in Stuttgart is my last one, and it was the first job I ever asked for. It’s the crown jewel,” Shields said. “We’ve had a lot of challenges here, but we’ve been able to work through all of them because the people show up every day and they’re willing to put in the work.” “It’s meant a lot to me,” he added.

After nearly four decades of service, Craig Shields will soon be moving from Germany, where he serves as the director of the 405th Army Field Support Brigade’s Logistics Readiness Center Stuttgart, to Panama. Courtesy Photo

Craig Shields served the U.S. Army for more than 37 years as both a Soldier and civilian. Courtesy Photo

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The Big Question: How does diversity benefit the Stuttgart community? In June, the Stuttgart Military Community gathers together to advocate for equality for all, regardless of gender, race, age, color, religion, or sexual orientation. In support of that mission, we at the Stuttgart Citizen asked: How do you think diversity benefits the Stuttgart Military Community? Here are some of the best answers we received.

Diversity helps us become empathetic of different perspectives. When ideas and life experiences are shared within a diverse community, this drives away biases and negative stereotypes. It shows that each person’s identity is unique and valuable. - Annie Messing

Diversity greatly benefits the community in many ways. It takes away the idea that someone is alone and having to fight on their own. Many are here with no family members or extended family. That’s what the Community should be about--not about cliquing up and pushing someone out. That can lead to suicide, ultimately. It also helps that people have someone to turn to, even to just hang out, especially when it’s sunny. We all need Vitamin D! - JaNeika HayesPrudeaux

It encourages brilliance and displays various levels of beauty and thought! We are not made from one but become one due to the strength we share to empower each other. - Janette Kautzman

It allows everyone to feel accepted. Living overseas, we may be far away from our usual support system. Therefore, we must rely on each other even more so while stationed here. Celebrating diversity sends a message that you are welcome, and every person deserves to feel this way. - Tina Alvena

Diversity gives us a wider viewpoint of the world. Through each other’s life experiences, we can expand our knowledge and learn to empathize with others. Only then can we come together as human beings. - James Deidrich

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June 2021