News: Indiana Guardsman is recognized by German Army
Story by Sgt. 1st Class Matt Scotten
INDIANAPOLIS – Lafayette, Ind., native Capt. Bryan Kain was recognized by the Federal Republic of Germany Nov. 21 at the 38th Infantry Division Headquarters, where he was awarded the Federal Armed Forces Bronze Foreign Duty Medal.
The German medal is a unique honor for an American service member. It is rarely awarded to non-German men and women. It can only be approved by the President of the Federal Republic of Germany.
Kain earned this distinction during his time with the International Security Assistance Forces of Afghanistan in July 2010 to July 2011. During this time, Kain’s work with combined NATO forces allowed for several German construction projects for the Afghan National Army’s Engineer and Combat Service Support Schools to be completed in a positive and timely manner.
“This is a wonderful day for German-American friendship,” said Schumacher. “Of all the Issues Germany has encountered since the end of World War II, there is not one that we could have overcome without the help of the American government, most notably being the reunification of our country. The wonderful day would have never happened without the help and assistance of the American government and its people.”
Kain was relatively humble over the presentation of this rare award and tried to make light of his work with the Germans in Afghanistan. “I had a lot of fun working with the Germans. They are just good people and we learned a lot from each other.” He later joked, “They taught us paperwork, and we taught them PowerPoint.”
Also present at the ceremony was Indiana Adjutant General Maj. Gen R. Martin Umbarger and he related part of the conflict with Germany during WWII to the modern wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. “At the end of the conflict, we worked really hard to build Germany back up, as we did in Japan and they are two of our greatest allies today. As Iraq and Afghanistan recover with the freedoms that we all love and cherish, we look forward to counting them as strong allies in the future as well.”