A Surprise Award from
the USAREUR Commanding General



We were honored with a surprise award presentation one evening by General B.B. Bell, the four-star commander of United States Army Europe and 7th Army here in Heidelberg, Germany.  After Dane's welcoming speech and just before "Jekyll & Hyde" began, General Bell stood up and walked unannounced to the front of the house. Our new stage manager was about to tackle "that guy" walking around while they were trying to start the show, but luckily the rest of the crew immediately recognized him, and waited to see what was about to happen.

General Bell said how he and his wife, Katie, have had a wonderful time coming to terrific plays here over the past few years, yet they realize they don't just happen.  It was clear to them that while a lot of people made all this happen, and work hard just out of love and commitment, there is one guy around here who seems to glue this whole place together.  "And it's my sense," he said, "it's Dane Winters.  I want to give you a Scroll of Appreciation from the United States Army Europe."



United States Army Europe
Scroll of Appreciation
is Awarded to Mr Dane Winters

In appreciation for exceptional service as the Heidelberg Roadside Theater Artistic Director from December 2000 to November 2005. Your enthusiasm, devotion, and leadership proved invaluable as you directed various cast and crew members to deliver numerous magnificent performances over the past five years. As a direct result of your talent and dedication, the Soldiers, civilians, and family members of United States Army Europe, and Seventh Army and the Heidelberg Community were provided a wonderful venue for quality entertainment for all to enjoy. Your outstanding service relects great credit on you, the United States Army Garrison, Heidelberg, and the United States Army, Europe.

Any Mission, Anywhere!

signed This 5th Day of November, 2005
B.B. Bell
General, US Army

A few days later, we received a gracious email from Katie Bell:

As always we left the theater almost breathless with wonder at what you all accomplished. The casting for that production was so perfect and the talented voices in this community just blow us away!!!

We are dreadfully sad to be leaving a place that has been home off and on for six years. It has been the privilege of 36 years to be connected to these heroic families during one of the most challenging periods USAREUR has known. Among our fondest memories will be the time spent at Roadside, enjoying the unbelievable entertainment provided. I smile, even as I write, as the different and varied productions come to mind….not one single one a favorite, but all cherished.

My thanks to you, Dane, and everyone connected to this theater for your dedication and commitment to our community. I am so proud that we are able to have someone of your tremendous caliber doing what you do so well. We will miss you all so much.

With Respect


Dane Winters replies:

This was a tremendous surprise and the proudest moment in my almost 20 years of working in Army Entertainment. Such an award from General Bell is certainly prestigious. However, it meant even more since General and Mrs. Bell, besides being Roadside patrons, are familiar with the program, its mission, and our volunteer participants.

We will miss them greatly, especially the sense of excitement the casts and crews felt when they knew “the Bells and the Gravens” were in the house.


The two coins shown below the Scroll of Appreciation show the front and back of the Commander's coin.  Coins are a military tradition with the unit's crest on the front of the coin and a custom design on the back, originally handed out by commanders to unit members for a job well done. To be personally recognized by your commander has always been a huge morale booster for military men and women, and a 4-star coin from General Bell is quite an honor!