Soldiers with 4th Combat Aviation Brigade, 4th Infantry Division deployed to Eastern Europe had their holiday leave canceled in December, after U.S. Army Europe declined their commander’s request for an exception to the deployed leave policy.

But about 250 of them had already booked flights, hotels and made other reservations to travel or go home to see their families over the holidays, according to a Dec. 11 U.S. Army W.T.F! Moments post, and the command was working to issue refunds, Beth Clemons, a USAREUR spokeswoman, told Army Times last week.

“The command, led by the 4th Combat Aviation Brigade, has been working diligently with airlines and third-party vendors to secure refunds for the 250 soldiers who purchased tickets in anticipation of leave, that was ultimately not granted due to mission requirements,” Maj. Traun Moore, a USAREUR spokesman, told Army Times on Wednesday.

The command assigned refund coordinators to the brigade’s battalions, and 4th CAB commander Col. Scott Galloway wrote a letter for his soldiers to provide to travel companies explaining the situation.

But about 50 of those cases couldn’t be settled in a timely matter, Moore added, so those soldiers will get to take their vacations after all.

“These soldiers were granted leave after the command determined their leave will not significantly impact the unit’s mission,” Moore said.

The command is still working on refunds, he added, and the number of soldiers with outstanding claims “declines daily.”

Meghann Myers is the Pentagon bureau chief at Military Times. She covers operations, policy, personnel, leadership and other issues affecting service members.

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