As East and West Germany became one Oct. 3, dissolving the division that resulted from post World War II agreements, the Allied occupation status was suspended. At the war's end, the four Allied forces assumed occupation duties in the cities four sectors. But with the country's unification, the status of the Allied occupation forces was lifted, returning administrative control of Berlin to Germany. In the American sector, this occurred with the inactivation of the US Command, Berlin, during an Oct 1 ceremony at Clay Headquarters. There, then-US Commander, Berlin, Maj. Gen. Raymond Haddock said "Barriers once thought to be insurmountable have crumbled and been carried off. Oppressive structures which, up until a short time ago, seemed impenetrable, have been swept away as if they were the stuff of bad dreams. Other, infinitely more pleasant dreams whose fulfillment seemed a matter for future generations, have become imminent reality, our reality Berlin and Germany are being united in peace, in freedom, and upon a firm foundation of democratic values and the rule of law" Haddock said. He also spoke directly to soldiers in Berlin: "You practiced and protected those democratic values which unite free people everywhere, and which unite them too with those who still wish to be free. By so doing, you proclaimed the right of liberty, human dignity, self respect and mutual respect to all men."
Haddock now is the commander, US Army, Berlin, until he leaves the city, relinquishing his position to Brigade Commander Brig. Gen. Sidney Shachnow. The lifting of allied occupation was symbolized Oct. 2 by the Allied Kommandantura's final meeting. The Allied Kommandantura was formed to direct the city's administration jointly during post war years. During the final meeting, the Western allied commandants and ministers heard the final reports of the Kommandantura's various committees. During his remarks, Haddock said, "With the citizens of Berlin and Germany, we share the joy of unification. We experience a sense of deep satisfaction in the certainty that history has vindicated the mission of the western allies in Berlin the tears that are being shed are both for joy and sadness: joy that our efforts have been successful, and sadness that some of us soon will be leaving." Another major event was the Sept 27 ceremony honoring the military police of allied checkpoints Alpha and Bravo, which stood at each end of the Berlin Helmstedt autobahn to assist allied travelers in their travels through the "corridor". But because East Germany became just another part of the united Germany, allied travelers no longer need the assistance, nor the checkpoints. The checkpoints closed Oct. 2.
The Aviation Detachment also was affected by the removal of travel restrictions. Among its other missions, the detachment once flew into the small exclave of Steinstucken until 1971, to include a small-scale airlift. But because Steinstucken is no longer isolated by East bloc territory, the detachment officially flew over east German territory into Steinstucken for its final time Sept. 29. Lt. Col. Doug Powell, the detachment's commander and a pilot during that flight, said that he expects the unit to continue flying occasionally into Steinstucken, but in a friendly partnership relationship and not as an official duty or mission. Powell said, "I was interviewed by Voice of America there, and my response to them was that I don't see it as the last flight. As long as we have a partnership relationship with Steinstucken, we will continue." He added that the unit hopes to get new rotor blades to replace those forming a monument in the exclave.
Although not directly part of the US Command, Berlin, the US Military Liaison Mission also was inactivated because of unification during a ceremony Oct. 1 at the Potsdam Mission House. Checkpoint Charlie, which had been closed and removed from Friedrichstrasse during a ceremony June 22, was officially given to the German History Museum Sept 29 during a ceremony on the Platz der Luftbrucke. Berlin soldiers also were involved in some of the many city-sponsored events and celebrations, most of which were Oct. 2 and lasted past the formal unification at midnight.
Haddock signed the city's Golden Book-a log that guests of Berlin are invited to sign as a register-Oct 2 at Rathaus Shoneberg. A farewell ceremony for the Allied commandants also was held that day at the Schloss Charlottenburg. The Senat sponsored an allied party and reception, also Oct. 2 at the Philharmonie. The Busch-Roland Circus on Lutzowplatz had a special performance and party, to which allied soldiers were invited.
The Berlin Brigade Band, as well as the other Allied bands, performed at the Lustgarten for the street party-attended by an estimated 1 million people-which stretched along Unter den Linden from the Brandenburg gate to Alexander Platz during the night and lasting until late Oct. 3.
First Sgt. James Parrish said of the band's role in the festivities, "I'm really elated about it. We've had this dream in the Berlin Brigade Band for a lot more years than I've been here-to play this close to Alexanderplatz in the East for East Germans-and it's sort of a miracle." Parrish said. Sergeant Cynthia Gagnon, also in the band, said, "The Germans have been just wonderful, I think they're as curious about us as we are about them. It's been really exciting."