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Combat Equipment Battalion Luxembourg
Combat Equipment Battalion North
Bettembourg-Dudelange, Luxembourg
4931'07"N 606'10"E

Combat Equipment Battalion North (CEBN) is an element of the Army War Reserve Support Command's Combat Equipment Group-Europe (CEG-E). The battalion's two subordinate combat equipment companies (CEC's), the 16th CEC and the 23d CEC, are small, mostly civilian TDA (table of distribution and allowances) organizations. They operate storage sites for Army pre-positioned stocks at Zutendaal, Belgium, and Bettembourg and Sanem, Luxembourg, respectively. The CEC sites are large, modern, well-equipped facilities constructed to a high standard by NATO in the late 1970's and early 1980's. The 23d CEC site at Bettembourg, Luxembourg, includes the Luxembourg Maintenance Center, which had been constructed specifically to support surge requirements.

CEG-E received word in the summer of 1996 that it would host 4 National Guard units-some 400 citizen soldiers in all-for overseas deployment training (ODT) the following summer. The four National Guard units were a diverse mix: the 945th Collection and Classification Company, from Delaware; the 3664th Direct Support Maintenance Company, from West Virginia; the 3654th Direct Support Maintenance Company, from Iowa; and Company B, 340th Forward Support Battalion, from California. The first and most obvious obstacle to supporting the National Guard units was providing life support. CEBN's sites are essentially production and storage facilities, with no barracks and very limited morale, welfare, and recreation (MWR) facilities. They also are located at remote sites, away from major U.S. troop concentrations in Europe, and they are widely separated from each other. On 17 March 2006 the Department of Defense announced that the United States will cease operations at the Army Prepositioned Site (APS) at Bettembourg, Luxembourg. Due to U.S. European Command force structure realignment and transformation, and the attendant reduction in storage requirements that has occurred in the central region of Europe during the past several years, the U.S. Army storage facility at Bettembourg has been identified as excess to the Army's needs and will begin the process to be returned to the host nation. Consequently, US operations at APS Bettembourg would cease by the end of September 2006. This action is expected to save $24.8 million annually. As with all stationing actions, the U.S. has coordinated with host nation officials at all levels before this announcement.

The Luxembourg Army, a tiny, all-volunteer, but highly professional force, eagerly took on the mission, despite a full plate of support demands ranging from the Luxembourg Stabilization Force contingent in Bosnia-Herzegovina to Luxembourg's term in the European Union Presidency. They agreed to set up and operate a tent city at the Bettembourg site and provide food service (supplemented as needed by U.S. Army unit personnel). The 80th Area Support Group, the 254th Base Support Battalion, and the Luxembourg Army did a superb job of providing life support. The Luxembourg Army's cooks consistently applied their considerable culinary skills to making evening meals at the Bettembourg tent city a wonderful contrast to the meals, ready to eat, the units got at lunchtime. The host nation work forces, far from showing resentment or suspicion, took quickly to the visitors working beside them and proved very supportive and helpful. Media events and visits of dignitaries went off superbly. The 3664th Direct Support Maintenance Company, training at Bettembourg, was the subject of articles in four local newspapers, including a French regional paper, Le Republicain Lorrain, published in Metz.

In 11 May 1944, during afternoon missions by Eighth Air Force B-17s, 19 attacked a marshalling yard at Bettembourg, 60 attacked a marshalling yard at Ehrgang, 55 attacked a marshalling yard at Kons Karthaus, 58 attacked a marshalling yard at Saarbrucken, and 16 attack a marshalling yard at Volkingen. Six B-17s were lost. From 1944-1945 the shunting terrain was in use with the USA-army as a depot.

South of the station of Bettembourg a large shunting yard can be found. Here international goods trains are served.

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Page last modified: 05-07-2011 02:43:10 ZULU