Friedberg and Bad Nauheim, Hessen mean a great deal to me. My path there was not planned and I was simply assigned there once I arrived in Rhein-Main. I was not aware of the area or town before getting off the bus in 1981. If fact, the only reason I was in German was that I traded assignments with another soldier in basic training who wanted to remain in the US, so I volunteered to take his assignment. Now looking back on that decision, it was the best decision in my life!
I was lucky, as I was fortunate to be stationed at Ray Barracks while Elvis's former barber still worked there cutting our hair, he had photos and the stories he would tell. I had not known of Elvis's time here until I went to the mess hall which was named the Elvis A. Presley Dining Faciltiy. Awesome I thought.
All the classmates and friends of my wife. I was definitely out of my element here. My wifes wedding dress was hand made by her and she used pennys she saved for her wedding shoes in the traditional sense she followed.
On our last day in Germany, before flying to Fort Stewart as a young couple. With no real plans outside of being together, we started our path in the world.
Since after three times stationed (a repeat feat!) at Ray Barracks, I left the US Army in Germany in 1992, after the gulf war where I was deployed during desert shield and storm. When I left the military, I requested that I be allowed to leave the US Army in Germany, known as a "European Out", as some soldiers who had German spouses could choose to do. like one of my soldiers who married a girl from Bad Nauheim as I did, unfortunately, he died after leaving the military and I visit his grave every time I visit Bad Nauheim.
When I left the US Army, the very next day I started working at the "Computer Center - Freidberg" where I worked for about two years, then onto larger roles locally, then in Wiesbaden, then Munich and Frankfurt Niederad. I worked as in the German economy from 1992 until 1999 when I returned to the United States working for Cisco Systems. By the way, all of our kids were born at the Hochwald Krankenhaus