Tuesday, August 2, 2016

Lindsey Air Station: Twenty Years Later

From 1945 to 1993.....Lindsey Air Station existed in Wiesbaden and was a Air Force installation.

To be honest, the Nassau government of the 1860s had started the military function of the 'camp' with a couple of barracks, a military hospital, and laundry.  The Prussians came later to utilize the camp.  And in the 1930s.....the German Bundeswehr under the Nazis built up a number of buildings onto the site.

It was a limited area....probably one kilometer by one kilometer....with probably forty buildings during the Air Force period.

For twenty years....up until 1973....it was the headquarters for Air Force in Europe.  After 1973.....they moved out to Ramstein.

It was a unique part of town....a US installation within the city limits and where you could walk out the gate and jump on a bus and be at the end of Wiesbaden within fifteen minutes.  Landscaping made it an attractive site, with historic buildings as part of the base.

Today?  Most of the street names have remained the same.  Willie Brandt Alle replaced Lucas Ave.  The term "Europaviertel" is the name for the neighborhood now.  I'd take a guess that twenty additional buildings have been added to the grounds....mostly as middle-income housing or apartments.  The baseball field still remains and gets used.  The chief occupant or user of the site is the VHS (the community college of Wiesbaden).

If you walk around, there's one statue or monument in place to note the contributions of those from the Air Station.  You wouldn't really know that this was a former military base if you looked at the way that they've landscaped it and made it into part of the city structure.

Food-wise?  The only restaurant on the property is Leib and Seele Bisto....a small operation on the main street (along Willie Brandt Alle).     If you cross the street, there are a dozen places....most of them that former military folks would remember from the 1980s (KFC is still around).

It's been 23 years since the closure, and if you asked anyone under the age of 30 who is a resident of the city....most don't know the whole story behind the neighborhood. It's just another part of the city.


Troy Swezey said...

If my memory serves, my ex used to have her office there when she was with DODDS before they relocated to American Arms.
DODDS moving to American Arms was super convenient for us since we lived something like 170 meters from there.

Anonymous said...

I was stationed at LAS from 1981-85. The dorms I stayed in (women's) were unusually pretty architecture for a military base. We were spoiled in that sense. It was such a small base, but a good community. I loved living in Wiesbaden and the locals were especially welcoming if you attempted to speak German and show a little cultural appreciation. :) Good memories. Thanks for this post.

-Dani M.

Anonymous said...

I was stationed there from 1986-88. My first assignment right out of tech school. Beautiful place. It was only about 1 1/2 mile in diameter. Everything was within walking distance except the BX and the commissary which was off base up in the housing area. Loved the annual Lindsey Fest. It's been 31 years and I retired from the AF last year but I can say that was the best assignment I've had in my career.


Anonymous said...

I was just there.

So much has change. I was a young airman right out of tech school.

Stationed at Lindsey 1985- 1988.

I didn't know it at the time, but I was very lucky to get that assignment.

1st Comm

Mike said...

I spent Apr 1963 - July 1965 here for the best duty station I had in 8 years.
Wiesbaden is a wonderful city that kept its German culture in spite of the many
thousands of military personnel in the surrounding area. Ive been lucky to return
many times to enjoy it.

John Pieper said...

My mother was at Lindsey as civil service Chief of Military European Communications for that area of Germany and dad was Air Force stationed at Wiesbaden. We looked forward to the Friendship Fest every summer when the locals would come on base and we would have a great big carnival with food and rides. Best years of my life living in Wiesbaden. We would often pick my mother up from work and just eat at the "chow hall" rather than drive home and cook. As a kid that was so much fun.