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Ayers Kaserne at Kirch-Göns, Germany (coordinates: 50° 28' 46.08" N 8° 38' 41.83" E) was a U.S. Army installation built in 1952 as part of the major construction efforts under the U.S. Army troop augmentation program of the early 1950s, occupied initially by the 4th U.S. Armor Division in 1956 and then home to Combat Command A, 3rd Armored Division was stationed at Ayers Kaserne beginning 12 May 1956. The troops arrived following an 11-hour train ride from the port of Bremerhaven.

History[edit | edit source]

As of 1 October 1963, Combat Command A was reorganized and re-designated as the 1st Brigade,3rd Armored Division (United States) which was the largest combat brigade in Europe until 1996 when the division colors were transferred back to Ft. Knox, Kentucky for retirement of the colors, thus the end of the historic 3rd Armored Division (United States) (Spearhead).

Ayers Kaserne, 1985. Note Motorpools with tanks, APCs and artillery

The installation was known throughout the United States European Command (EUCOM) as "the Rock".

Originally, Ayers Kaserne was used as a recovery field for the German Luftwaffe during World War II. The entire base was demolished, except for one bunker. United States President and Commander-In-Chief Gerald R. Ford visited Ayers Kaserne in July 1975; the first visit by a U.S. President to a U.S. military installation in Europe since John F. Kennedy's 1963 visit to the 3rd Armored division in Hanau, Germany.[1] President Ford was accompanied by General Alexander M. Haig, Jr. (the seventh Supreme Allied Commander, Europe), Colonel Louis C. Wagner, Jr. (Commander, 1st Brigade, 3AD); and Georg Leber (German Minister of Defense). Units of the 1st Armored Division (forward) occupied the Kaserne until its closing and return to the German government in 1998. Today, the former military kaserne is being redeveloped as a business/industrial park, chiefly occupied by a transport company named "Bork".[2] Most of the buildings occupied by the U.S. Army were demolished by 2008. The kaserne was named Ayers Kaserne in honor of SSG Lovall E. Ayers, B Company, 22nd Infantry Regiment, 4th Infantry Division, killed in action in World War II.

Notable residents[edit | edit source]

  • Elvis Presley, known as the "King of Rock and Roll" took the 11 hour train ride from Bremerhaven to Ayers Kaserne, where he was in-processed and assigned to the 3d Armored Division and then transferred further south to HQ Company 1st/32nd Armor at Ray Barracks in Friedberg, as a tanker.

References[edit | edit source]

Also see-[edit | edit source]

  1. Kaserne
  2. List of United States Army installations in Germany

Kaserne Links[edit | edit source]

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