Honoring 70 years of American/German alliance

  • Published
  • By Staff Sgt. Gabrielle Spalding
  • 86th Airlift Wing Public Affairs

RAMSTEIN-MIESENBACH, Germany – Nestled on the corner of a not-so-busy street in Ramstein Village is a crop of red metal containers. The bright color grabs your attention; but what’s displayed inside of the containers tells a story of decades of U.S. and German resolve, solidarity, and partnership.

The Docu Center Ramstein hosted Ramstein Air Base and local leaders, their families, and patrons, to commemorate this unity during the opening of the 70 Years of Ramstein Air Base Exhibit, June 15th.

“Seventy years of Ramstein Air Base; a rather long time of coexistence of US-Americans and Germans in the region,” said Ralf Hechler, Union Community and City of Ramstein-Miesenbach mayor and host of the exhibition. “It is the responsibility of the Docu Center to offer an objective view on the history of living together.”

During the event, guest speakers shared their appreciation for the center and how this exhibit has illustrated what Ramstein AB has stood for over the years and its role in the history of the region. 

“This great display does not only show how our air base grew larger and more modern, but it also speaks to the U.S. Air Force as an employer for thousands of non-U.S. and U.S. civilians,” said Renae Fischer, 86th Airlift Wing vice director. “This exhibition, showing the development of Ramstein Air Base, was the work of many years and many hands.” 

Using carefully selected objects and photographs, the exhibition has commemorated seven decades of the Air Base and the impact it has had on its surrounding communities.

Among the objects on display is a C-130J Hercules “Spirit of Ramstein” logbook from 2004 and 2005. 

Americans and Germans continue to forge bonds together in offices, during exercises and emergencies, and connect while living alongside each other across the Kaiserslautern Military Community, said Fischer. 

Together, as allies and partners, many significant events have been accomplished, from providing logistics support to NATO, to temporarily housing 35,000 Afghan evacuees, to sending medical supplies and other equipment to Italy, Luxembourg, Lebanon, Ghana, and South Africa at the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic.

“Without the hospitality, generosity and cooperation of our German hosts, the success of these and other missions over the past 70 years at Ramstein would not have been possible,” said Fischer. “On behalf of Brig. Gen. Olson, and the men and women of Team Ramstein, thank you for putting this amazing art exhibit together that honors the Americans and Germans who have worked together in the name of freedom, democracy and equality to keep this nation and our allies safe.”

To peek into the last 70 years, the Docu Center “70 Years of Ramstein Air Base Exhibition,” will be showing June 15 – Aug. 31. Gates are open Tuesday – Sunday from 2 – 5 p.m. For any questions, please call: +49 06371 838 005.