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US soldiers sweep tattoo competitions in Germany expo

A back tattoo. (Air Force photo by Margo Wright)
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U.S. soldiers won almost every category of competition at the Tattoo Expo Grafenwoehr this weekend, held near the U.S. Army training area.

More than 100 U.S. soldiers got tattooed at the first expo held in the small town, getting everything from motivational tattoos of their unit logos to colorful drawings of their favorite superheroes and realistic portraits of loved ones and pets.

Many of the soldiers, like Spc. Dallas Immell, an infantryman with the Army’s 2nd Cavalry Regiment, stationed in Vilseck, wanted to get tattooed at the convention as a way to remember their tours in Germany. Immell’s tattoo of the Greek hero Perseus won best overall tattoo on Sunday.

“I’m leaving soon, so I wanted to get this to celebrate the time I’ve spent here,” Immell said.

Others, like Sgt. Jared Taylor, a 2CR scout, whose new fox artwork won best color tattoo, came because they love tattoo conventions and were excited to see one pop up right outside the base.

“I had a great time at the expo, not just getting tattooed but seeing what everyone else got,” Taylor said. “I think it’s a great idea to have a tattoo expo so close to a U.S. base, because that’s what a lot of soldiers like to spend their money on.”

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