About

In the late 1970s and early 1980s, roughly my kindergarten through fourth grade years, my family lived in a military housing complex outside of Heidelberg, West Germany, known as Patrick Henry Village.  There was at least one other major housing center in the area, Mark Twain Village, but this blog attempts to tell some of the stories of PHV, its host city of Heidelberg, and the surrounding area.

While looking up information on my old stomping grounds, I found myself lingering on the Google Maps image of Patrick Henry Village, which you can see here.  It probably doesn’t look like much to the average viewer, but to me it was a treasure trove of stories and experiences.  It seemed that almost every inch of the place evoked some memory, and I spent a long time scrolling back and forth, zooming in and out, and remembering.  As time went on I found myself wanting to record some of these stories and experiences, and finally I realized that a blog would be the perfect format.

The plan is to jot down these memories in non-chronological order and paint a picture of what it was like for a young boy growing up in an American compound in a foreign nation, and how for us kids it was much more than just an apartment complex for soldiers and their families stationed overseas.  I’m guessing that many of the wild locations and adventures revealed in these blogs may have been secrets long-kept by the schoolchildren of PHV…a sort of Neverland that went undiscovered by the mothers and fathers stationed there.

If you also spent part of your childhood in PHV, or if you were stationed there as an adult, hopefully these blog entries will inspire memories of your own which I’d love to hear in the comment sections.  I know there are more of you out there, I’ve caught hints and whispers of you as I’ve done some internet research on the area.  And if you’ve never been to PHV, never been to Germany, or never had any association with the US military, then my hope is that these stories will still entertain and trigger pleasant memories of your own personal Neverland.

108 Comments

108 thoughts on “About

  1. Judy Wall (Smith)

    I to, grew up in PHV, although I was leaving it as you came I believe. My father was stationed there and we moved when I was about 9, I was in the 5th grade. I have 3 younger brothers, so their memories are probably as potent as mine. I started middle school there when the middle school was new. I was the first 6th grade class to attend. I continued to 7th and 8th, then went on to the high school. I attended 9th and 10th before my father was relocated to Augusta, Ga. the summer of 1981. I know that it doesn’t seem like much to some,, but that was the longest I lived in one place. I still feel like it is home after 20 som odd years. I miss it and the people I grew up with there. Because I did not graduate there, I cannot find anyone I grew up with, and I miss those people. Even if you do not reply, it was nice to finally tell someone how much I miss the people I actually grew up with. My name is Judy Wall now. Then it was Judith Diann Smith, I was born in 1965,my graduation year was 1983. But I lived the longest stretch of my life in one place, in Heidelberg, Germany. I miss it, I miss the people I went to school with. I wish there was a way I could reconnect with some of those people, but I was not one of the popular people, I was not on any of the school teams, or anything like that. But I lived there longer than I lived anywhere and I remember the people there better than I remember anyone else. There are a lot of us out there, who lived there long enough to make a major connection, but did not graduate there. So we have no way to connect with the people we grew up with. It would be nice to be able to connect with people who lived there in certain years instead of people who only graduated there. Well, thanks for letting me vent, if you have any suggestions, my e-mail is judy.wall10@yahoo.com. It would be really nice to hear from someone who grew up there even if we didn’t grow up there at the same time.
    Thank You
    Judy

    • Barry Finch

      Hi Judy, I think we were in the 5th grade together. Our teacher was Miss Hammond. I lived in PHV a total of 8 years (2 tours) and we left in Aug 1982. I consider that to be “home” because that’s where I grew up. I’m really sad that.the US Army has moved out of Heidelberg! How different it must be there now!

    • Chris Booher

      Is one of your brothers named danny

    • I lived there too, 72-75 My earliest memories are of my Teacher, Mrs Throwbridge. I remember getting in trouble for climbing the fence and going into the cornfield to a old bombed houses and almost getting killed in it. Seeing Star Wars in the Movie Theater and Pretending I was in a X wing on the swings. Almost breaking my neck riding off the AC/Heat thingie at the school that was about a 2 foot drop lol. Of the old dump site where we rode our bikes, and I found a bunch of paint cans. had a multi colored bike then. Of my first fight that I didn’t run from. And living on the 5th floor in the attac. also getting stiches from falling into the old heating things in everyroom… And of my dad “borrowing” a 6by to sneak a dirt track car out of base to the race track and they always played 2 American songs. Mama Tired and Ring of Fire. And the Castle, and the park past it, boy this opened a flood gate.

    • Didn’t see the other part, Was in Augusta too. we lived off base at 2611 Glen Hills Dr,. Right off the Bobby Jones Exp.

    • I tried to send you an email

    • 21c san juan hill 70-74

  2. Judy, it sounds like we may have actually been there at the same time! But you were several years ahead of me so we probably didn’t cross paths. We had a babysitter whom I believe was named Yvette, she had red hair. Sounds like she could possibly have been right around your grade level, maybe you remember her?

    I know what you mean about it being tough to track people down, I also moved in the middle of my high school years. I’ve had great success finding old friends on Facebook, you might give that a try if you haven’t already.

  3. Betsy

    I was in PHV from 1981 to 1984– last few months of 2nd grade through 5th grade. Just found your page and am interested in looking around. I spend 2nd and 3rd grade in the “T shaped building” you mentioned–the primary center with Mr. Moore and Mr. Hudgens, had Dr. James for 4th grade, and Mrs. Merritt/Mrs. Karr for 5th (for some reason, we changed teachers in the fall). From looking around a little, you may have been a couple of years ahead of me, but seems like you’re “from my time”–looking forward to checking out more of this site! I feel like I grew up in PHV–those were my main childhood years, rambling around.

    • It sounds like maybe you arrived shortly after I left. I definitely remember Mr. Moore as my 2nd grade teacher, he had dark hair and a beard and he was everybody’s favorite. I’m pretty sure Mrs. Karr was my 4th grade teacher, I want to say she had dark hair and glasses.

      • Germaine

        Hi. I was there in the 4th, 5th and 6th grade back around 1968. Was the baby sitter you referred to in a previous post Yvette Hovey? I remember Kenney Cooney, Wally Willard and Dennis and Michael Blaufuss. I lived on San Juan Hill, Apt. 32D. I’m not sure, but I think I’m in one of the class photos posted!

    • Tonya Carter

      I lived there as well from 1981 -1984😊
      In 1981, I was in the 4th grade, we left around March 1984-I was in the 6th grade. My name is Tonya Carter.

      • Betsy

        My sister had Mr. Count for 5th. You must have been a year ahead of me 🙂 going by the years you listed but looks like we were there at the same time.

      • Amy

        I had Mr. Counts in 5th gr too. 1979.

    • Shellie Carter

      I had Dr James for 4th!!

    • Shellie Carter

      I had Dr James for 4th grade as well .. We were there from 81 to 84 .. I’m 42 so I’m wondering were we in the same classes

      • Betsy

        We probably were in the same class, Shellie 🙂 I’m 42 also, grad high school in ’91. Things and people I remember from Dr. James class–my best friend was Laura J. My mom has the LOVELY class picture from that year at her house but I’d probably remember more names if I saw it. I remember Paddington Bear in the classroom (I HAD to have one!) and that Dr. James invited pairs of students to her house during the year for dinner. I think that was the year I won the spelling bee 🙂 I have read Mrs. Piggle Wiggle books to my kids and remember Dr. James introducing me to them—

      • EaglesSoccerPHV80

        I had Dr James for 4th grade in 1980. Definitely the best teacher ever. Totally remember her Paddington Bear that would usually be sitting in a chair in the back of the room, in the book nook. Also, remember each week Dr James would invite 2 students from class for dinner — you had the choice of either going to McDonald’s or her home. Classmates from that year that remember are: Stephen Springstead, Tammy Moen, Alex Mendoza, April Warner, … the only reason I can remember some of the names is because Stephen Springstead wrote a song about the class, w/ a lyric for every student. He also had a dead-on impersonation of James Brown.

        Does anyone remember the nasty flouride? and you be randomly selected to collect the spit cups?

  4. Lance Davis

    Great blog. I attended PHV Elementary from 1st – 3rd grade (1981 – 1983). I believe my teachers’ names were Ladson, Hockett, and Webb.

    Thanks for your blog; it definitely brings back memories.

    Lance Davis

  5. Wow. Wow. I lived in PHV about 1990-1993. Not a whole lot had changed from what I have read so far. Now the dam has broken and all the memories are flooding back, for the first time ever. Miramar, going over the fence on the west side into what was then farmland, “Old Dominion” (which I think was the restaurant next door to the Rec Center), the theater that played two movies at a time, AAFES and the comic book store, the skateboard ramps that my sister and i rode milk crates down, the plastic playgrounds and the smell of urine (a favorite, lol), OH OH – smacking my head by spinning on the swingset and running, dazed, home gushing blood out of the back of my head. I really hope I get to visit Germany again. The Karlsruhe Zoo. The hike up to the castle. Haha, if nothing else, thank you!

    • Ashley

      It’s crazy that I found you on here Jon. I’m actually in the process of writing about my life and I was researching Heidelburg, when I found this blog. I was finished writing about when we would ride down the skateboard half pipe on the milk crates. *tears filling my eyes.
      I really do appreciate this blog.

  6. Tom

    I’m so pleased to have found this blog and impressed with the content. Kudos to the author for undertaking it. My family lived in Heidelberg from 74 to 80. My father was a civilian working for the Army so we were lucky to have been able to stay for such a sustained period when so many friends seemed to ship out after 2 or 3 years. Our family lived in MTV and I attended k-5 at the grade school there and then to the middle school in PHV for part of 6th grade before returning to the US so my experience was a bit different from the PHV childhood experience. For us in MTV, German neighborhoods were only a block away and we knew all the paths up the mountain above Rohrbacher Strasse to the cemeteries that overlook Sudstadt. And I have vivid memories of the “back road” that lead to Patton directly from MTV. My familiarity with PHV is probably just the basics that anyone from PHV would consider old hat. I remember high school football games (my older siblings were in the marching band). Our family loved The Keller in the Officer’s Club where the pepperoni on the pizzas baked into little cups of grease (odd memories to retain, I know). We also liked the dining room upstairs at the Officer’s Club where Wolfgang the old German played piano so dramatically. Also the Dansk Furnishings shop in that building as well. I loved going to the carnival in PHV too. I don’t recall what time of year it would take place, but it was always fun for us kids. And I remember going to the fireworks shows on July 4th in the field behind the NCO Club (which had a fine deep fried wiener schnitzel sandwich I recall). For us in MTV, we felt a bit of jealousy at times toward PHV because it was an isolated American community with lots of Americans concentrated in one place so it felt a little more like an American experience to get out to PHV. I was able to return to Germany in 2000 and was anxious to see all the old familiar places. I was able to get into PHV and MTV residential areas to see how things changed, but the bases were of course off limits. I made the mistake of taking photos of Campbell Barracks from the outside and was held at gunpoint by two American soldiers who took my camera. The Balkan conflict was still ongoing and the bases considered themselves on alert. Naturally, I was an idiot for trying to take those pictures anyway. I went back to Heidelberg several other times since 2000, but the American residential areas were gated – including PHV- so people without proper credentials were not even permitted to drive through. MTV more recently became NATO housing so the guards that prevent entry struggled with English and dismissed my attempts to negotiate my way in. My focus during my visits is now just Altstadt, the castle, philosophenweg, etc. When we lived there I played for a German soccer team so I also have a lot of fond memories of the surrounding communities where opponent clubs were located- Rohrbach, Rot, Leimen, Handschuhsheim, Oftersheim, Pfaffengrund, Boxberg, St. Leon, Kircheim, Schwetzingen, etc. All of that makes the return trips worthwhile even if the American military parts are all gone. For those of us not affiliated with the military, it would have been off limits anyway as views on security changed years ago. Still, I share the frustrations of Ms. Wall above in that it is so difficult to reconnect with people who I may have known during those years. I have a lot of curiosity about where people are today and whether they also suffer from a constant longing to return to Heidelberg. Cheers!

    • What an awesome blog to stumble upon. I resided in PHV in the late 70s and early 80s and attended Heidelberg Middle School. I was doing a search for the piano player Wolfgang that played in the Officer’s Club. He also gave private lessons and I have always wanted to thank him for teaching me and sharing his musical wisdom. Some of the success that I have had in the music industry today is definitely because of him!! I did return to Heidelberg in 2003 and was unable to locate him, but for the most part things had remained the same. The memories of growing up in Heidelberg are a mainstay in my heart and mind. It’s definitely a blessing to be a part of the privileged few….not many people understand!

      • Thanks! You know, in one of my posts I said I remembered hearing Wolfgang Jack on the radio in the Officers Club. Now I’m wondering if my memories are a bit jumbled because I must have known that the piano player’s name was Wolfgang. 🙂

  7. When I lived in PHV, I was only vaguely aware of MTV. I think I played a few baseball games there, but otherwise it wasn’t really in my consciousness as an elementary school kid. I wonder how they decided who would be assigned to PHV and who to MTV? Not sure if it had anything to do with what the parent(s) were doing for the military, or if it just depended on which place had space available.

    I also remember the Keller pepperoni being like little cups of grease, but a friend taught us to put a drop of ketchup on each one to help with the perceived spiciness and that became a tradition. But I haven’t and wouldn’t try that on any pizza since.

    • Tom

      I’ve checked out your whole blog. So many great stories and memories. Thanks for putting it together.

  8. Susan

    This is so cool! I lived at PHV with my family from 1967 to 1970, attending kindergarten (Mrs. Sands?) and first grade (Miss Sayer) there.

    I’ve read only a few entries so far, and I’m amazed how similar our impressions are—of the exterior stairs to the basements, the coal bins, the stairwells, the wide-open attics. Magical and mysterious things to all small kids, I guess.

    Thanks so much for sharing your memories.

    • CDS

      Hi Susan. I lived in PHV 1967-1970 and my mother, Mrs Sands, was your kindergarten teacher! I just called her to tell her that she’d been remembered. Great laugh!
      So many memories on this blog. Thanks to the person that started and is maintaining it. I had the opportunity to return a couple of years ago. … stood at the gate peering in. .. yes almost had my camera confiscated by the guards. Lol. And I remember Halloween in the stairwells and painting our Windows for Christmas and the circus … sigh.

      • Susan

        Hi, CDS! It’s wonderful to hear Mrs. Sands is well and laughing. I loved Kindergarten, even though I got in trouble for overly enthusiastically thanking Mrs. Gooooooooooosssssssse for grape juice and graham crackers. (Was the snack lady really named “Mrs. Goose”?)

      • Amy

        Halloween where the whole basement storage were haunted house tunnels were the best!!

      • Sheila Barber

        hi there… I was there at the same time..67-70..my kindergarten teacher was Mrs. Whitehead, don’t remember my 1st grade teacher…just she was blonde lady with glasses…we lived on Lexington Avenue??? I think… I remember there being a playground to the right and behind our building, we used to walk to Foodland and get popsicles, also there was an overpass to a big highway somewhere near the housing area with steps to walk down to it….??? fond memories.. Sheila Barber

  9. Susan

    I have late 1960s pictures of Little Big Horn Street, Halloween in our stairwell, and Tompkins Barracks, if you’re interested. How can I get them to you?

  10. Reid maxwell

    I was going to show a freind a picture of the heidleburg castle, so I googled images and it took me to your site, so I say thank you. So many memories rush back to me when I was a little hell raiser growing up in PHV. We lived there 2 time 3 years each time in the 70s and early 80s. We lived on San Juan hill and south getteysburg.who says you can go home. just by seeing the pictures of building made me think on the stairwells, the little 4 lane bowling alley, riding on the bus to the P.X (and having to go to Campbell barracks, Patton barracks,centag, and other stops on the way).shoebox size transformer to plug something in.Watching General Hoslptal every day after school .WHY? great question there was only one channel on the T.V (AFN)I saw where a few folks mentioned there teachers name,I wish I could……there are too many miles and too much time gone by. But I remember the middle school, some faces , mostly I remember good times. Thank again so very much.

    • Kc

      Reid maxwell – my memories of heidelberg 80-82 were 2 years of bullying from you. Glad your memories are different

      • EaglesSoccerPHV80

        I was bullied by Reid Maxwell, also. I wonder if he is still allergic to Chapstick. Reid, you’ll have to answer that one.

  11. Greg

    What a great site to stumble upon, mine started out as google image search for PHV. I believe my picture search started as an attempt to go back to an easier, happier time when there was no cell phones, ipods or pads, kindles, DVR’s, twitter…..well I’m sure everyone gets the gist. My memories aren’t as good as some of yours but they are all for the most part good. We were there from about mid 67 thru mid 70. I don’t remember the street we lived on but the movie theater was just off the end of our building and the bowling alley was just on the other side. Bowling was .10 a game and I believe the movies were .25 and I seem to remember they were at the end of a shopping center type area. Busted my chin open jumping down the outside exit steps of the theater, took drum lessons from a guy across the street, no less then two full grocery bags (paper of course) of candy at Halloween between PHV and MTV. Played a lot of baseball at the fields….I want to say they were toward MTV ??, seem to recall it was a pretty good walk. I don’t recall if it was every morning but someone always came thru and sold hot brotchen and pretzels….I can still smell and taste it ! ! ! I didn’t know it then but Heidelberg and Germany in general shaped a lot of my current interests today. I went to my first car race, a Formula 2 GP at Hockenheim. I had no idea then but one of the greats Jim Clark was killed in an accident that day. All my life I have been and F1, Indy Car and sports car fan. I currently live (by chance) about 7 miles from Road Atlanta which is an older but premier road course track. I am a WWII enthusiast, I’m still amazed by the good and bad of the era. I remember touring the Dachau Concentration Camp. I live about 45 minutes from Camp Toccoa. For those of you familiar with Band of Brothers that’s where Easy Co. trained….3 miles up, 3 miles down. If you’re ever in the area the museum is a must see. There is a lot I don’t recall, I don’t remember anything about school or street names. I only remember 1 friends name, a kid by the name of Del. But I tell you what, all of these distant memories bring 1 big smile and a few tears to my face and there is nothing else that does that. I just looked at a few pictures that have been laying around and there were about 5 from Heidelberg. 1 of Mom/Dad getting ready to go out and they’re sporting these Russian looking hats and one of the base with a Howitzer in it. It does sadden me to learn the base has closed but I certainly hope the base and apartments will be put to good use. I want to thank the creator of this site and all of you that have left comments….it’s be fun again ! ! !

  12. Liz

    I was went to school at phv from 78 to 84. Anything left to see? Going back this August to check it out. Taking the kids to Leimen pool and luisenpark etc

  13. Jens

    I’m German and I grew up in nearby Eppelheim and I still cannot believe that PHV is empty now. Heidelberg has changed quite a bit already. I was active in the German-American Friendshipclub Kontakt in Heidelberg in the late 1980s, maybe someone remembers that club. We spent a lot of time in the movie theatre or the bowling center at PHV. I miss that a lot.
    I love this blog as it brings back memories, even for me as I didn’t live there … Thanks!

    • Hi Jens, I went to the PHV elementary school, but my family wasn’t military, they were contractors for the army. I grew up in Eppelheim also. It is such a lovely city. When I eventually visit again with my husband, we’re going to head back there. I can’t wait to show him around the town! I’m finally learning German fluently and would move back there in a heartbeat! The German people are wonderful. Thank you for your kindness to us Americans while we were there. You helped make our experiences beautiful.

  14. PHV is supposed to run through a conversion process fairly soon. City of Heidelberg plans an open doors day event in the near future.
    As soon as I have further information, I will let you know. Definitely planning to attend and take as many photos as possible, as this might be one of the last chances to see PHV in its’ original shape.

    Great blog ! Please keep posting your memories.

  15. RLD

    Great memories from July 2003- September 2007. Thank you.

  16. Rick

    I am a bit older than those I follow with my reply but it is interesting how we all were there in such impressionalbe years. My dad was sent to Germany twice following WWll, the second being PHV in late1958. I was seven at the time but can clearly remember nearly everything about that magical time. The countless times with so many other army brats and hours and hours of play around the base. I too remember waking in the wee morning hours to the “this is a USAREA”(sp) practice alert” and my dad quickly leaving our apartment combat ready for the trucks waiting outside. It was so cool to know I would get to nod of immediately afterward. We were in13C San Juan Hill. First stairwell, second floor apartment on the left. Our bathroom window facing the street. We had a four square court directly below that side of the building. We too had temporary lodging in the “maids quarters” when we first arrived and the hallway was so long we ran and skate slid in our socked feet.
    I remember so many fun times there. My first big bicycle ’26 in’ and my dad getting it from the trunk on the bridge the crossed the autobahn as we entered the post, letting me ride it home from there. That same bridge was a secret spot several of us found that had a group of hedges just at the edge where the bridge ended on the post side. We would go there and play army hiding from the cars that would pass. The Saturdays at the matinees with the cartoons preceding whatever serial film that would follow. The Sunday services in the nearby chapel with a sign of changeable letters reminding what faith was to worship at whatever hour.
    Our mom was pregnant with my younger brother at the time which meant FREEDOM! My older sister and I would bicycle to the nearby German town on the economy. The candy store there where we would see the gummi baren strung arm in arm across the store, He would pull off whatever amount the Pfennig or Mark we had would buy. Their popcorn was incredible. There was a public pool there nearby as I recall. Crazy to think kids would never be able to do those adventurous things alone these days. Not a care in the world back then. At least while school wasn’t in session.
    Speaking of On the Economy, remember the plaza where the hot dog vendor would have that spicy mustard seemingly only flavored that way in Heidelberg. I think it was at the commisary that mom would buy the steins with cardboard cap with that same mustard inside. We have several of those blue and beige steins to this day.
    I could go on and on…. Thanks for letting me remember once more.

    • marnie

      You write beautiful. Please write more.

    • Craig

      Hi, Rick. It seems we arrived at about the same time. I got there in August 1958. We lived at 20F San Juan Hill (3rd floor). We were her until Feb. 1961. I do remember a Ricky (palmer, I think). What is your last name? I had many of the same “exploits” as you.

      • Rick

        Hi Craig:
        I was a Ricky back then but never a Palmer. Good to hear from someone in our age range though! I read the dates when others were there and wow! Funny, I was so sad to leave there that summer and thought I would never have friends like that again and now I struggle to remember the faces much less the names of even my closest pals from those days so long ago. Although at the time we were young with much still to see. I do remember getting to our new post in Fort Hood,Texas and seeing several faces in school that must have endured the same fate as us. Dad retired a few years later and I actually never changed schools again, something I never thought was possible.
        Thanks for asking!

    • Mike Moore

      I just found this website and lived at PHV the same time you did. We lived at 3C San Juan Hill from 1958-1963. I remember the movies and the candy store two of my favorite memories.

    • Janlol

      While you were in Heidelberg, I was in Landstuhl where my father was a surgeon. I went to Kaiserslautern High School on the bus each morning. Best years of my life. Returned to Germany after college and experience teaching in Texas. Taught in Bad Kreuznach and Baumholder. Married a soldier and lived a total of 30 years in Germany. Retired now, but still miss Germany. We are able to travel there occasionally. Wonderful ! I loved my life in Germany !

    • Joye Emerson

      I lived in PHV from 1959-1963. I went to Heidelberg High that was in Mark Twain Village. Rode the bus to school every day. My very best memories in my life are of those 4 years we lived there. I remember those USAREUR practice alerts, too. My dad always got a phone call just before they picked him up.
      I went to my Jr/Sr Prom in the Heidelberg Castle; and I remember Philosopher’s Way. We are blessed to be able to call Heidelberg and USAREUR part of our lives. I had wonderful friends and we had such a good time together at the Teen Club. I have lost touch with all of them, which I consider a huge loss, at least for me.
      Mr. Micket was one of my English teachers. He was the coolest teacher ever. He even knew how to make Shakespeare interesting to the kids. And he was an avid skiier.
      I really do miss those times.

      • Richard Kautz

        Joye, I belong to the HIS Early Years and get their quarterly newsletter. You might contact janclayberg@gmail.com to join up. I would like to hear from you and what you have been doing for the past 50 years.
        Have not had Choclate chip cookies like you mom made since 1962.

        Ric Kautz

      • Joye Emerson

        Hi Ric, what a nice surprise to hear from you. It’s funny you remember my mom’s chocolate cookies. 🙂
        My days in Heidelberg were my best memories.
        I live near Seattle, Wa. Where do you live?
        I hope to hear from you again.

  17. Nicola Marr (then Nicki Reid)

    I was Nicki Reid then but Nicola Marr now. Wow, I am a Canadian kid but my Dad was working with Sentag in Heidelberg and so I was sent to the American military school system for three years from 1970-1974. I remember Ms Califf and it wasn’t until I was in high school that I discovered the real name of her “herbal perfume” lol!! I remember watching movies and the rivalry between MTV and PHV which I always felt left out of. Anyone else remember the Rod and Gun Club in Nussloch? I had my first American style hamburger there with Dr. Pepper soda. We lived in Waldorf and at the end of our stay a large apartment building was build to house American families. Anyone remember that?

    • Barbara Walker

      I remember the Rod and Gun Club! I went there one time and they taught me how to shoot and I hit the target on the first time! LOL! That was the one and only time I held a gun.

  18. Jonathan

    I lived in PHV from 85 – 88. Does anyone remember Mr Kott as a 4th grade teacher ??? My dad was an officer and he also coached me in flag football each fall. I loved my time in Heidelberg. I lived in the apartment building across the street from the Canadian school. We played tackle football in that grass field almost daily usually until the sun went down. We learned to play rough and we came home with blood, torn clothing and grass stains everywhere. I went on to be an All-state FB player in HS in Colorado after learning to play in Heidelberg as a kid. My mom would open the window from our third floor apartment and call me to dinner. I’d make it within the hour 🙂
    The top floor of our stairwell had this big empty room we used as a playroom when the rains cam.
    My sister Jill and I loved the indoor pools at Hockinheim and Bellamar. We grew up playing marbles in the dirt patches near the playgrounds. I remember many of us created a water balloon gang called the Water Rats to battle other water balloon throwers. The stairwells with so many kids living there made it a perfect atmosphere for kids to grow up. Halloween nights were notorious for the harsh weather in the mid 80’s….. but so fun . I still have the LGB train set my dad got me from those great toy stores in Mannheim. I will hand it down to my son in a few years…..
    Hanging out in oldtown and walking down the Haupstrasse . The Kriskingle markets around Christmas time were incredible.

    Its one of the amazing things living in Europe and being able to be in Paris or Amsterdam in just a few hours drive on the Autobahn.

    I was able to travel back to PHV in 2006. So many memories….
    I am very sad to hear that PHV is closed. I sure hope something comes of the complex. Keep us posted.

    thank you for the memories.

    • Sascha

      Jonathan, I too was at PHV from ’85-88. I was there for 1st grade through 4th. Mrs. Staley, Mrs. Joiner, Mrs. Shackelford (the coolest teacher who drove a Porsche), and then Mr. Kott. Making copies of worksheets with the mimeograph/blueprint. I learned to play tough soccer there and went on to be quite competitive stateside. Playing marbles on the dirt yards, “king of the mountain” at the play grounds. Riding bikes in the basements. Epic haunted houses at Halloween in the apartments. Watching Top Gun a hundred times when it hit the movie theater. The bazaars at the officers club. Tacos at the Keller. The advent of Burger King on PHV. The wave pools and slides at Bellamar in Schwetzingen and Hockenheim. The 1812 Overture with Cannons in the big parade field over near the bowling alley? Great snowball fights. Full-on fights with kids on the way to school and at school–PHV made you tough! The Volksmarches in various towns. Riding our bikes to the Tiergarten in Kirschheim. The great memories of the Altstadt, lighting the Schloss in the summer, fireworks…ahhh. Wonderful memories from a tender age.. Thanks for all the memories shared in this blog phvarmybrat. I always felt a bit out of water there as I was an Airforce Brat. Going to Ramstein for the air shows was a great memory. I’ve been back to Germany twice since then as an adult…so many changes on PHV, and of course everything looked smaller…thanks for the memories!

  19. Yvonne Endris

    Wow! I found this by accident and so glad I did! I lived in PHV from 1964 to 1968. I went to first grade there and I remember my teacher’s name was Mrs. Argyle. I think that’s how it was spelled. She had red hair. My second grade teacher’s name was Mrs. Schafer. My dad retired from the army in 1969 and we moved back to the states. I’d love to hear from anyone who was there or knows anyone that may have been there during that time.

    • Barbara Walker

      That was my time frame. I think I still have the class photos. Will have to dig them out and digitize!

  20. Lou Ann Steckla

    I lived in PHV from 1964 thru 1967. My father was an officer we lived on 4 San Juan road or drive phone number I still remember it 74576. I have been back to Germany so many time I was born in Germany adopted to a military family. I have found my family in Germany thanks to the internet , I am inserted to talking to people who lived on PVH and would like to find some of my childhood friends.

  21. vanessa

    Hello… What a great blog! I went to PHV Elem from 80-83… my favorite teacher was Mr. Junker, for 4th grade. Anyone know how to reach teachers from that period?

  22. Nancy (Gould) ILL

    Hi
    I’m so happy I found this bog, I lived in PHV 62′-65′. We are going to Germany this Sept and I would love to show my husband where I lived for three years. Does anyone know what I need to do to get onto the base? Please let me know anazee@comcast.net
    Thanks, Nancy

    • Linda (Elder) Newman

      Hi Nancy. Was your father a doctor? We lived in Heidelberg around the same time and our doctor was Dr. Gould. Such fond memories of PHV. I would love to visit. My sister has been back asan adult. Ihaveshared this link with her. Perhaps she will comment.

  23. Jens

    Hi, I just came back from a weekend in Heidelberg. Just a quick update for everybody not following the local news. Europe is being faced by many refugees at the moment. Most of them end up in Germany. The local authorities then often put them in former military housing – also PHV.

    After the Americans left the region – there is no military in Heidelberg, Schwetzingen and Mannheim! – they have not found a new usage for all the installations yet. In Heidelberg most of it is still empty and behind fences – Mark Twain Village, Patton Barracks, the airfield, the hospital and PHV. They have remodeled a handful of blocks in the Southern end of MTV and sold some appartments others are being used as student housing. All other buildings are still empty.

    Patrick-Henry-Village is now being used (since last year) for the refugees. They quickly renovated a few buildings and put almost 3000 people in them. It’s all around the Officer’s club. They have blocked up the other areas within PHV. So there is a fence within the fence.

    Since the refugees are not allowed to work they usually walk around. So they walk across the fields towards Kirchheim to shop or to take the tram to downtown Heidelberg – for those who remember the area.

    Please get in touch – jehrsj@yahoo.com – if you want more details. Jens.

  24. John Saenz

    Hi, I lived in Mark Twain from 1981-1983, went to Heidelberg High and graduated there in 1982, then went on to U of Maryland in Munich but my parents were still in Heidelberg so I got to visit. I am planning on visiting Heidelberg in April of 2016. I found a story online about 2 weeks ago on the Rhine Neckar Zeitung saying that the High School building is going to be turned into a German school after renovations. The news site has had many stories about MTV, PHV, and our school recently, and if you use Google Chrome you can have the pages translated into English.

  25. Tom

    Here is a long shot– there was a German man named Volker Baumann who worked in the AYA offices in PHV (American Youth Activities and later known as DYA for Dependent Youth Activities) during the 70’s and 80’s. The AYA/DYA was where families would go to sign up kids for soccer, baseball, football, basketball, softball, etc. I am interested in tracking him down to say hello, but have not had any luck on social media or with internet searches. He ran the soccer teams comprised mostly of Americans, but that only played in the German leagues (Mustangs, Stars, Tornados) and had a side job as a freelance photographer. It is a random request, but thought I’d take a shot in case someone knows if he is still in Heidelberg.

    • George Perlinger

      Tom, you wouldn’t have attended Darmstadt vocational class in the afternoons, would you?

    • My dad was GS but I spent a lot of time in PHV for movies, going to the library & visiting my friends that lived there. I was in the Burg from 1983-1987. The Volker had died when I went back to Heidelberg to stay with my parents after I graduated college. I don’t know exactly when…That time frame was 1991-1993. I was so sad he was no longer with us, but he can remain in our hearts💜

      • EaglesSoccerPHV80

        I was on the Stars German American soccer team coached by Baumann. He definitely had a temper and wouldn’t take any BS.

        Do any of the other players remember a miniaturized soccer game he had in his house called “tip kick” ?

    • Tom

      @EaglessoccerPHV80– when did you play for Baumann?? I played for the Mustangs 77-78 and then the Stars 79-80 when our family returned to the U.S. Yes, Baumann was tough and I remember whining about him when I was young, but the memories of playing on those teams are some of my happiest from Germany. And YES, I remember his tip kick game. And the trips to Stuttgart to watch VfB Stuttgart play Baumann’s favorite team (Gladbach). I am still a follower of Stuttgart to this day because of Baumann. I wonder if we played for the Stars at the same time??

      • EaglesSoccerPHV80

        @Tom – looks like I started one year later, in 1981-82. I remember the Stars practiced in PHV behind the middle-school. Baumann loved forcing us through overwhelming heading and volleying drills. One game against Kaiserslautern I remember losing extremely bad, 10-nil. In ’80, I was not in the German-American soccer league and played for a team called “the Eagles”. The father of one of the players, Mark Pino, coached the team. Coach Pino looked like Christopher Reeve from Superman and was extremely cool. There was a special magic with that team, and in that same year we one the championship. Best memory right there.

  26. Tom

    George- No, I’m afraid I never did.

  27. Diann

    This is wonderful! Thank you so much for setting this up. My family was in Heidelberg ’62 or ’63 to ’65. My dad was with USAREUR, my brother and sister attended Mark Twain Elementary and my other sister was born at Nachrichten. I came along after they returned to the states. Then my husband, girls and I were privileged to be stationed at PHV 2011-2013. Our oldest was in the last graduating class from HHS. It was an honor, as sad as it was, to be part of the closing of this memorable place. As my girls like to say, “once a lion, always a lion.” Heidelberg will always hold a special place in our hearts.

  28. Pat (Dubie) Boyle

    Hello all, I attended HHS from 1959 to 1962. I have just discovered this blog and have only just skimmed the entries looking for folks who were living in PHV when I was there. We lived in the houses on the far side PHV. I loved my years in Heidelberg and hated having to leave after my Junior year. Have visited the castle on a couple of trips back to Germany. Love telling people about attending my Junior Prom at that castle.

  29. Mike

    Hello all,
    The Jenkins family lived in Nussloch and I took the street car to Mark Twain Village for 4th and 5th grade as it was the only american school to attend. (70 and 71)
    My brother Ross and I then went to a private German school close by in 73 for the 6 th grade.
    English institute.
    Movies at the base were 25 cents popcorn was a dime.
    Lots of great memories. We would say the pledge af allegiance to the flag every morning before class.
    Mike

  30. Gary T.

    Hello fellow time-travelers. My father was assigned to USAEUR and the family lived in PHV from 1961 to 1964. I remember clearly it was 24D San Juan Hill. I had a crush on the girl who lived across the stairwell, Linda Nash, who was one day older than I. Such a great place to live as a kid even though the world outside the gate was pretty chaotic in the early ’60s. Though we were isolated It had every bit of Americana that I needed. I attended the elementary school on base and the only teacher I can remember was Mr. Clark (6th grade). But I remember playing “ghost ball” at every recess, where the entire class would compete against another – it was a big deal. From Heidelberg we spent every school holiday packed into a VW bug touring Europe and visiting all the hundreds of Army and Air Force bases. They were everywhere. We even visited installations in France before DeGaulle made us leave. I always enjoyed stopping on the autobahns and getting a burger and fries at the PX snack bars along the way. My favorite place was going to Garmisch and staying at the General Patton hotel. Very sad to learn its closed and vacant, if not torn down by now. It was magical for a kid to go down there in the winter with snow everywhere. Especially sad to see the Google Earth photos of PHV entirely vacant – a ghost town. But, for me it was a special place and time. Thanks for sharing.

    • Vicki cunningham

      Hello Gary, I had Mr. Clark as well in the 6th grade and never thought to be sharing the memories. I remember being a hall monitor with the navy banner wrapped around. I loved our time there and the freedoms we had as children. Some names I remember …Lucy Dennington and a John ..my name is Vicki Cunningham and my brother is Richard Cunningham.

    • Craig

      Hi, Gary. I lived at 24F San Juan Hill from Aug. 1958 until Feb. 1961. Right above where you were. I was in 5th Grade then. My teacher was Mr. Tarzia.

      • Craig

        Whoops Gary. Brain cramp. I lived at 20F San Juan Hill. So, we were in different buildings. Sorry 🙂

  31. Chris booher

    I was at phv back in 81,82,83.im 42 years old now.i came across the article when I googled brotchen lady.i use to love the sugared gummie pickles.would love to find some.your article brought back a lot of childhood memories.

    • Shellie Carter

      Chris I’m 42 as well and we lived there during that time frame who did you have for 4 th grade ? I had Dr James and she is the only teacher I remember so well

  32. Tonya Carter

    I lived on San Juan Hill in the early 80’s…..I miss this place. Such fond memories of the playgrounds, walking to the movie theater, the store…💓
    Truly miss all the friends I have made. Best place to grow up💝

    • Tonya Carter

      Does anyone remember Mr. Count 5th Grade, and Mr. Anderson – he taught typing at the High School🤓
      Some of my classmates I remember: Mark Hyder, Peter Cressy, Tina Kitts, Margi Dulzo( she was my best friend)

      • EaglesSoccerPHV80

        Mr. Count, didn’t have him, but, wasn’t this the teacher who supposedly picked and flicked boogers at the students ? At least that was the on-going rumor of the guy in ’81. Mr. Count — pick ’em, lick ’em, stick ’em, and flick ’em.

  33. Amber

    I was born in Heidelberg and spent most of my childhood there. Dad was stationed in Germany most of his military career. I live there from 1979 to 1986. I have many fond memories of growing up in PHV. I’m sure my brother has more memories as he is 6 yrs older than me.

  34. Mark S Hernandez

    I just found this site by chance and reading the comments has evoked some great memories. I lived at 13C Little Big Horn (that address came out of nowhere…) from 1967 to 1969, 3rd thru 5th grade. My brother, David, was two years older and my sister, Diane, 5 years older so she went to Heidelberg HS. My mom was also the President of the NCO Wives Club for a couple of those years but I don’t remember which ones.

    As I was reading thru the comments, I noticed that Germaine referenced a name that I had not thought of in ages. I also knew Wally Willard and hung out with him on a daily basis. I remember competitive marble playing, marble boards made with nails and rubber bands, comics, British Bulldog, snowball fights, and “kill the man with the ball” as past times. Halloween was also a huge boon for candy since each building had three stairwells and 6 apartments per stairwell!

    I don’t remember the names of any teachers, but I think I still have some of my report cards from those day. I guess I will have to dig those up. 🙂

    Thanks for the blog!!! I’ll have to share it with my siblings.

  35. Shawn

    Great memories. Was there 86-89. 1st through 4th grade. Shakelford, webb, braschotti, and I don’t remember the last teacher. Its amazing playing marbles, the hedge tunnels, coal rooms, upstairs attic, bmx track, etc.

    They eventually covered up our marble area with grass. I guess there were too many little kids swearing and causing a ruckus. While we were there, the changed out our playground around 88-89 I believe, to wood. The took down the plastic dome always smelling of urine. lol.

    Those two square buildings in the south west of PHV you mention that weren’t there during your time were probably built in the early 90’s I believe. I think it was about 89 when they brought in all the construction and supplies to start building it. I remember because we would go mess with everything, to include the tractors. it sat there for a while and no construction started while we were still there.

    When you mentioned behind the fence… I believe the field on the east of PHV had a laundromat around there somewhere. We would ride our bike over there occasionally when we found a few coins and get a warm drink from the vending machine. It had a ton of different weird flavors, and would shoot out some powder and hot water.

    We lived on alamo circle. just north of the middle school and baseball field, we had a giant wooden fort and would play king of the fort until the sun went down. As you mentioned in some of your other posts, Germany’s awesome playgrounds, this fort was massive, and would not be considered safe for children nowadays. Its amazing more people didn’t get hurt.

    Another fun thing we would do, when it came time to renovate the buildings on PHV, construction equipment and materials would be lined up and gated, next to whatever building was to be renovated next. We would go and climb through and play in all of that as well. Not sure if anyone else remembers doing this either.

    Amazing blog. Please continue if you remember anything else.

  36. Pat (Dubie) Boyle

    I lived in PHV 1959-62, my Freshman, Soph. and Junior years in high school. Would love to connect with others who were in my class. I truly enjoyed my years in Heidelberg.

    • Joye Emerson

      Hi Pat, I lived in PHV 1959-63. I was one year younger than you. I also left Heidelberg after my Junior year. I was so upset because I really wanted to graduate from HHS. It was hard starting my senior year in a brand new “civilian” school. My father retired in 1963 (while we were in Heidelberg) so I wasn’t in a military dependents’ school any more.
      I’m so grateful for the time we spent there. Those were the best memories ever. Are you in touch with anyone else that was there at the same time as we were?

  37. EaglesSoccerPHV80

    Miscellaneous memories from PHV, early 1980’s:
    – PHV’s yearly German-American festival that would last 2wks near the end of summer
    – At the festival: bumper cars (Rick James super-freak overplayed here), the pirate ship ride, ghost house, the coin-pusher games, the German visitors’ favorite food was the corn-cob on a stick
    – Jumping the barbed-wire fence to get into Lizard Hill, set up rabbit traps w/ friends
    – Sting weed and blackberry bushes at Lizard Hill
    – Listening to music w/ friends on the picnic tables next to the marble courts
    – Buying Gummi coke bottles and pretzel buns from the Brotchen-Lady (the little blue truck)
    – The old man who used to ride a bike around and would dumpster dive into the trash bins
    – Playing video games at the ice cream parlor and bowling alley
    – Going to the “teen club” on Friday nights, remember watching the Flash Gordon movie there
    – The awesome snowstorms of 80 and 81, snowball fights and snow forts
    – Being careful not to make snowballs with snow from the dog-walking areas
    – Buying comics and books at the Stars & Stripes, after getting hair-cut at the barber next door
    – The teachers who would teach German in 4th and 5th grade — one was called Frau Von Kutzleben
    – Catching fire-flies in the summer time
    – The over abundance of chesnut trees near the marble courts
    – Schwetzingen and Leimen pools
    – The Familia Center, you could take the bus and walk there from one of the bases
    – Riding bikes to Eppelheim, you would go pass the Capri Sonne factory on the way

  38. EaglesSoccerPHV80

    Who exactly was “Peaches” ?

    I lived in PHV between 80-83, and in 5th grade distinctly remember stories of an extremely tough girl who lived on the base at the time. Folks who knew the individual would refer to her as “Peaches”. I never saw Peaches myself, but, kids would often mention her name — “Peaches is going to come after you.”, “Peaches is going to rough you up.”, etc. Basically, you NEVER wanted to be on the target of Peaches, that would mean big trouble. If you were in grade/middle school at the time, you would have to have heard of her. Did this person actually exist ?

    • Polly Rhoades

      Yes she did. I lived there in the late 70’s and there was a tough girl peaches. She had a little brother Dwayne.

      • Thomas Jensen

        I remember Dwayne. He was one of the bullies in the Middle School at the end of the 70’s. My mother was a volunteer nurse there and she would always talk about yet another kid who reported to the nurse after taking a few punches from Dwayne. Must have been a genetic thing.

  39. Gray

    Stumbled across the blog when looking up the official name of the base in Heidelberg and you all have taken me back to the best memories! Wolfgang was my piano teacher (so, maybe not ALL great memories…if you weren’t talented, he wasn’t so awesome ;). 47-F San Juan Hill, walking to school, popsicles at Foodland after school. The O-Club and getting to be “fancy’ every so often. The potato farm off behind PHV where we would stock up and store them in the cellar. Oh, and that looooonngggg dark cellar hall to get from the far end of the building to the dumpsters??? I was in 7th grade the first year the “middle school” opened and it was awesome because I had time to go home for lunch every day if I wanted to. Mr. Romero and Mr. Mittenzwei were my 6th grade teachers and changed my world. I could go on, but I won’t. Thanks for the memories!

  40. Barry

    Hi Gray–I too attended HMS when it opened in 1976. I was I. The 6th grade but we moved to the states in Dec. of 76. We came back in the Summer of 77 so I went to 8th grade there also. In the summer of ’76, a tremendous storm hit PHV and broke a lot of Windows, tore clay tiles off roofs and flooded basements. The boiler room of the newly constructed middle school flooded and since there was no hot water until the boilers could be replaced, we did not have to shower after PE.

    The new school was a fantastic place–everything was new and modern. It smelled new. There were classrooms with moveable walls, atriums, and the multi purpose room had dimmable fluorescent lights that kids used to play with during lunch. The gym had dead spots in the floor that you couldn’t dribble a ball on! I hated moving away because Ihad to finish 6th grade back in ekementary school. We lived at 12-C S. Lexington, by the bowling alley and then at 44-C S. Lexington.

  41. Tim Crothers

    Family lived there from 74 to 77 . My sister and i had great times. I remember Halloween where my dad would set up at the entrance to the stairway and scare the kids truck or treating. I also have great memories of the Bicentennial in 76. Can’t forget the playgrounds and movie theatre too. Lots of friends at school. Playing in the basement and upper loft at the top of the building. Moved back to the states in 77 .

    • Hey Tim Crothers, what grade were you in and what teachers? I was there from 72 to 75 nd then moved to Worms in 76. You seem to be the only one on here that was in PHV the same time I was.

  42. Mark Schmid

    We lived at PHV from 74-76. I’m not much of a writer but these are some random memories. We were on S Gettysburg, the first bldg. past the school. I remember the Labovitches (sp?) and Wingfields lived in our bldg. The football field was in our backyard. Across the street we played marbles in a dirt patch. Boys would come from all over the village to play there. We had a tomboy friend that lived in the next stairwell (Michelle?) she was a red head and would play sports with all the boys in the backyard. I think my teachers names were Ms Hammond/5th & Ms Smith/6th. Funny, we had a bully also, she ruled the school. She never had to fight though because she had a gang of guys that did all her dirty work. I can’t remember her name or nickname. I played soccer but didn’t make the ‘all-star’ (Bauman?) team. I forget our team name, but we wore red and white. I remember trick or treating with my soccer buddies and having to drop off a full grocery bag at home before going out to fill another. Our 6th grade class went skiing in Garmish. We had two German families we were friends with and had wonderful experiences exploring Germany with them. (I could write a novel about that) I love Germany and have great memories from our time there. We returned to the states in June of ’76. It was neat to return right in the midst of the bicentennial celebration. I returned to Germany in ’97 and visited Heilbronn where we lived from 72-74. It had been decommissioned and was now German housing. I didn’t have a chance to visit PHV, but maybe it is better to remain as a wonderful memory.

    • Amy

      We moved into your building around 77. We were on first floor (which was great because we had been living in another building on 4th floor.). Great memories!

    • Sheila Barber

      Mark Schmid.. I also lived in Heilbronn 72-76?? 3rd-6th grades..lived in the upper housing area where the elementary school was..right next to the commissary bldng 208..maybe we had classes together.. Mrs Odell, Mr Prutsmann, Mrs Charles, those are the names I remember… Sheila Barber

  43. Lou Ann

    I lived there in the 60’s. On San Juan Road in the officers quarters from what I have been reading sounds like I missed a lot not living around the school. Any way went Back to PHV in 1998 they had a burger king. WOW !!! Question??? I am hearing thru the Grape vine that the Refugees of Syria and other countries are taking up Temporary housing at PHV.

  44. Pat (Dubie) Boyle

    Hi Lou Ann, I lived in PHV ’59-’62. We lived on Buena Vista in the officers’ quarters. Would love to connect with you.

  45. Lou Ann

    I would enjoy connecting up also : email dlajagfsu@aol.com FB Lou Ann Walters

  46. Joan Reading and I have stayed in touch. Unfortunately no one else.

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  48. Bill Volker

    My family lived in PHV from late 68′ to mid 71′.It was 4th,5th and 6th grade.Ms Sieperda,Mr Loring and Ms Cheney are teachers i remember.Reading through this blog,i see most of us remember the same things.”pot poison”marble courts,.25c movies,.10c bowling,MTV,Halloween,the carnival,Eppleheim,massive snowball fights,lots of words that trigger vivid memories.We lived at 31E San Juan Hill St.We didn’t have television,and never missed it.AFN radio provided the sountrack.Trick or treating the officers quarters for bigger candy bars!The Eppleheim pool,and the cool stores for gummy bears and cool little toys.The brotchen truck.The beer and soda truck(and stealing sodas from porches).Stealing pumpkins from adjacent farmers fields.Walking through said fields all the way to the golf course to look for balls.Going to the Lymon pool.Heidelberg Schloss!The gypsies that would get get run out.Cub Scout and Boy Scout activities all the time,with Canadian and German scouts.Spending nights in castles.Karlsruhe Zoo.Darmstadt Museum.Garmisch.VW bugs everywhere.Washing cars for half a dollar.I went back to see it in 2011,40 yrs after leaving.My oldest daughter was stationed in Landstuhl so it provided the perfect opportunity to visit.Would love to hear from anyone who might remember me or who was there at the same time.

  49. Robbie

    I really hope the former PHV doesn’t meet the same fate as the old MTV. Sadly, I think that within a few years what used to be PHV will be largely unrecognizable. For nostalgia purposes I visited the MTV Facebook site recently and stumbled on several gut-wrenching photos of buildings being torn down and several areas in a pretty bad condition. Hated to see that, since MTV was my childhood home from 80-89. My understanding is that area is now being used for refugee and low income housing. Sad.

    • Tom

      MTV is currently under redevelopment and the plans are very exciting relative to the overgrown and boarded up ghost town it has been for the last several years. I was there in October and work crews were there removing debris which allowed us (my brother and I) to slip through the open gate (the whole area has been enclosed with tall fencing and restricted access since the Balkan conflict). The field adjacent to the high school auditorium and gymnasium was so overgrown that the brush was 7 feet tall in some places. There are a variety of websites discussing the development plan (all in German) and the city is very excited about it as property in Heidelberg has become super expensive over the last 20 years or so (depending on the location, 2 bedroom places can exceed $1.5 million). Most of the MTV areas west of Romerstrasse (the Campbell Barracks side of the street) will keep the existing building footprints with some infill of new buildings to be added including the open side of some of the courts. The plan is mixed use apartments, office, retail. Also, the schools (Heidelberg Elem and High School) are being gutted now to be used as schools again. Discussions for the plans of Campbell are still underway. We were able to drive through Campbell. It was a strange ghost town the day we were there because it is still closed to the public, but there have been a few city festivals on the parade ground since the city took it over again. I lived in MTV from 74 to 80 and I am sad to see the changes, but going back every year to watch it deteriorate more and more into a bombed out looking overgrown hellscape depressed me enough that I am pretty enthused to see it finally taking steps to become a vibrant part of the city again. Patton Barracks is also under redevelopment with a portion to be dedicated to a large public sports park. The plan for PHV is less definitive. It is currently being used for some temporary refugee settlement though many are being moved out of PHV to other areas of Germany. It is currently secured with lots of armed guards and only refugees and authorized personnel are permitted so we were not able to tour it. The last I read, the City of Heidelberg was still negotiating to purchase PHV from the German federal government (the technical owner). It is only a matter of time before that transfer is completed and it undergoes redevelopment.

  50. Amy Cook

    Loved reading these. We lived at PHV from 75-80. 3rd grade until 5th. I had Mr. Counts in 5th. Great. Remember going to Italy for a field trip skiing. Playing marbles in the courtyard. October fest coming each fall. I was telling my son about going to the movies on Sat 25cent movie. Boys would lay out their comic books in front of px to sell their stuff.

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