A star is born in Landstuhl

Photo by Tatyana Vyc/Shutterstock.com

Many members of the Kaiserslautern American Community, both active duty and family members have found temporary or permanent homes in the area. Some families may also be excited that new members see their first ray of light as a “Landstuhler” during their stay!

Since 1953 more than 55,000 babies of U.S. or German-American parents were born in Landstuhl. Primarily at the Landstuhl Regional Medical Center or otherwise at Nardini Klinikum/St. Johannis Hospital. According to the Registry Office Landstuhl, there were 780 births in 2020, 761 in 2021 and 758 in 2022, averaging a little over two newborns per day.

Some of these children visited Department of Defense Education Activities schools, eventually moved to the U.S. with their parents or remained in country. Many of them later joined the Armed Forces themselves and returned on a tour back to their roots. Others remained in the U.S., pursued civilian lives and careers in politics, the medical field, scientific research, in the broadcasting and show business or as sports stars. 

We would like to present a few people born in Landstuhl who eventually became rather famous in their various fields. You may already be familiar with some of them, but take the opportunity to get to know a few more. 

A virologist, an anthropologist and a politician 

To start off, Jeffrey Taubenberger, a prominent virologist was born in 1961. Together with another scientist, he was the first to sequence the genome of the influenza virus which caused the 1918 pandemic called the Spanish Flu. This is a process of determining the entirety of the DNA sequence of an organism’s genome at a single time.

Richard McElreath, born in 1973, became a Professor of Anthropology and is now the Director of Human Behavior, Ecology and Culture at the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology in Leipzig, Germany. 

On the other hand, David Cheston Rouzer, born in 1972, pursued a career in politics and since January 2015 he has represented the State of North Carolina as a Republican.

Life is a ballgame 

Some sports heroes may be better known, such as Rob Awalt, born in 1964. He was a tight end American football player for the National Football League for seven years and then drafted to the Phoenix Cardinals. In 1990 he switched to the Dallas Cowboys, then to the Buffalo Bills and played in the Super Bowls in the years 1992 and 1993.

Reggie Williams is another well-known American football player born in 1983. He played wide receiver for the Jacksonville Jaguars in the National Football League. He had his best professional season in 2007 with 38 catches for 629 yards and 11 touchdowns. In addition to his sports career, he majored in psychology.

Shawn Bradley, born in 1972 as son of a U.S. soldier and German mother, became a prominent basketball player. From 1993 to 2005 he played in 875 games in the National Basketball Association, mainly for the Dallas Mavericks. At a height of 2.29 m (7.5 ft) he is one of the tallest players ever and finally ended his sports career after an accident in 2021.

Josh Wicks, born in 1983, began his soccer career with the Vancouver Whitecaps in the United Soccer League First Division. He then switched to the Portland Timbers. In later years he played in several soccer teams in Finland, Sweden and Iceland, leading the teams to various championships.

The youngest sports star was born in 1991. Aaron Samuel Altherr, was born as the son of an American active-duty mother and a German father, who was a soccer player. Although he had a talent for both soccer and basketball, he opted for baseball in his late high school years. He then played on various U.S. teams and due to his country of origin, Altherr was qualified to successfully compete in the German National Baseball Team in the year 2013. 

Landstuhl rocks 

On another key, Rob Kelly Thomas was born in 1972. At the age of 13 he decided to become a rock star and visited his first Genesis concert during the “Invisible Touch Tour.” He was the lead singer of the rock band Match Box Twenty. His first success as a solo artist was in 1999 with the single “Smooth” in conjunction with Santana, which made it to first place in the U.S. billboard charts. In 2001 he was entered into the South Carolina Music and Entertainment Award Hall of Fame as the youngest artist ever. 

There is no business like show business 

Heather De Lisle, born in 1976, is the daughter of American Armed Forces Network DJ Rik De Lisle, and mainly grew up in West Berlin. Her first public moderation was at AFN Berlin at the age of 15 and she was first on television at the age of 18. When AFN Berlin closed in 1995 she worked for “Deutsche Welle” and since the year 2000 she has been a foreign correspondent for ABC News radio New York reporting from Berlin. She also featured in numerous German political talk shows. 

The television series “Roots” in the late 1970s and several Star Trek series and movies awarded fame to Le Var Burton, born as Levardis Robert Burton in 1957, as the last of our celebrities. Burton is not only a famous actor, but was also host to the PBS Kids educational televion series called “Reading Rainbow“ for more than 23 years (1983 – 2006). Older readers may recall his role as “Kunta Kinte“ in the series “Roots“ in which he played a slave in the southern states in the 1860’s. Younger folks may better know him as Geordi La Forge in Star Trek: The Next Generation (1987 – 1994) and various other movies.

Landstuhl may well bring about further celebrities and famous people in the future, but in any case every child born in Landstuhl is definitely a genuine shining star for the parents, siblings and friends of the newborn.

Be sure to take the appropriate steps to register your newborn child properly to avoid hassles when applying for a passport. For details, see below.

An addition to the Family — birth registry in Landstuhl 

Courtesy of Registry Office Landstuhl 

Having a baby is an exciting time in the life of a young family.  If your child is born in Germany, then there are a number of steps to keep in mind to ensure proper documentation and for the application of a passport.

The Registry Office (Standes-amt) in Landstuhl is responsible for documenting births and issuing German and international birth certificates for babies born in Landstuhl. 

Documents can be sent beforehand per email standesamt@landstuhl.de, stating your telephone number and the number of desired birth certificates, and to arrange an appointment. 

You can receive German and/or international certificates and if the child is born in the German hospital, you will require a copy of the birth register in order to apply for a passport for the child. 

Contact data at the Registry Office Landstuhl: 

  • Tel. 06371/83-123 Herr Marnet
  • Tel. 06371/83-223 Frau Herbst
  • Tel. 06371/83-422 Frau Thum
  • Tel. 06371/83-429 Frau Grün
  • Tel. 06371/83-121 Frau Gmeinwieser

In addition, all offices at the Union Community Landstuhl administration are open for business. 

Please make sure to arrange an appointment to avoid long waiting periods.

Verbandsgemeinde-verwaltung Landstuhl (General administration, traffic tickets)
Kaiserstraße 49
66849 Landstuhl
Tel. 06371/83-0

Standesamt Landstuhl (Registry Office)
Kirchenstraße 41
66949 Landstuhl
Tel. 06371/83-123, 83-422, 83-121, 83-223, 83-429

Verbandsgemeindewerke (City Works –water/waste water, gas, meter readings, final bill)
Bahnstraße 80
66849 Landstuhl
Tel. 06371/83-0

The following documents are needed after birth:

  • AE Reg 40-400b – Documentation of a delivery at Landstuhl Regional Medical Center
  • If the child was born in the German Nardiniklinikum St. Johannis, the registry automatically receives a birth announcement
  • Birth certificates of both parents
  • Marriage certificate for married couples
  • Paternity acknowledgement for unmarried couples and, if available, a declaration of parental care 
  • Passports of both parents
  • For different family names and/or different nationalities, we require a declaration regarding the (last) name of the child.  The form can be requested at the Standesamt
  • The according form was/will be handed out to you at Landstuhl Regional Medical Center and Nardiniklinikum St. Johannis.