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USAREUR Policy Changes Ensure Same-Day Service for New Arrivals

Oct 01, 2007
BY Sgt. Aimee Millham

HEIDELBERG, Germany (Army News Service, Oct. 1, 2007) - Soldiers and their Family members arriving for assignments in U.S. Army Europe will no longer have to wait days to reach their final destinations.

As of today, troops will reach their new USAREUR duty stations the same day they arrive in theater.

"When you get here and you're in that travel mode, you're dead tired," said Col. David MacEwen, commander of USAREUR's 1st Personnel Command. "And to have to stop in the interim, unload all your stuff, and partially unpack is a hassle."

In the past, Soldiers have had to spend a night with the 64th Replacement Detachment at Pioneer Kaserne in Hanau, Germany, before an initial briefing early the next day and before being bused to their units of assignment.

"When they come in, they're beat, especially if they have three or four kids and pets, plus the jet lag," said Sgt. Robert Wilson, USAREUR liaison at the Frankfurt International Airport. Sgt. Wilson said he's glad he'll now be a bearer of good news to Families when he tells them they'll be going to their new community the day they arrive.

"It'll certainly cut down on the tension and stress of travel," said Stephanie Brunkhorst, after landing Thursday with her husband Sgt. Adam Brunkhorst, their two-month-old daughter Theresa Jazmin and three carts full of luggage. The following morning in Hanau she said, "We could've had Theresa settled in already."

The change in the reception process is in accordance with USAREUR Commanding General Gen. David McKiernan's intent of getting new Soldiers where they need to be as soon as possible.

"Moving and travel are not easy, so there's no doubt this is the best way to take care of Soldiers and Families," Col. MacEwen said.

Soldiers will still go to Hanau from the airport, but the daily schedule of buses leaving Pioneer Kaserne to installations throughout USAREUR has been adjusted to make same-day arrivals feasible. Within the next couple of months buses will be leaving Hanau twice a day, Col. MacEwen said.

Changes to the reception program are expected to continue through next year, the colonel added, noting that by the first of the year USAREUR leaders hope to have a reception facility close to or in the airport.

(Sgt. Aimee Millham works for the U.S. Army Europe Public Affairs Office.)

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