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Photo Caption:  From left to right: Pvt.2 Amber Regalia, Irene Schleicher and Spc. Travis Williams put the finishing touches on Christmas dinner in Kemnath, Dec. 24.

January 2, 2014
By
Molly Hayden, U.S. Army Garrison Bavaria Public Affairs
Source: www.army.mil

KEMNATH, Germany -- For many single Soldiers living overseas, Christmas can be tough with family and friends so far away.

But a partnership between the city of Kemnath and the 615th Military Police Company brought Americans and Germans together to create a new kind of holiday tradition.

Dr. Peter Schleicher and his wife, Irene, opened up their home to Spc. Travis Williams and Pvt.2 Amber Regalia on Christmas Eve to share their culture and offer a place to call home, if only for an evening.

Throughout the evening the two Soldiers swapped stories, exchanged gifts and played games with the Schleicher family. They helped in the kitchen and soon feasted on an abundance of traditional German fare.

"I learned how they did Christmas, their traditions," said Regalia. "It was a new experience."

While it was the first year the Schleicher family invited American guests for Christmas dinner, Schleicher said it wouldn't be the last.

"It was a very nice and interesting evening for us," he said. "We will do it again."

For the Schleicher family, the more-the-merrier philosophy made Christmas spirits bright.