FORT RILEY, Kan. (WIBW) -- Fort Riley continues to welcome new faces to its leadership and bid fond farewells to those who have led soldiers here Kansas and overseas.
In a ceremony at Fort Riley’s Cavalry Parade Field Friday, the 4th Infantry Brigade Combat Team, part of the 1st Infantry Division, said goodbye to Colonel Joseph Wawro, who commanded the unit for nearly three years.
Wawro led the "Dragon Brigade" during several large-scale training events and their recent nine-month deployment to Eastern Afghanistan.
He’s been selected to be an Army Senior Fellow at the Washington Institute of Near East Policy in Washington, D. C.
"It's a very emotional day for me," Wawro told WIBW. "It’s been great being the leader of these soldiers and these families- our nation’s treasure and what makes our Army strong- and especially being out here in the Flint Hills. I’ve been in the Army for nearly 24 years now and the communities here in the Flint Hills embrace, I mean fully embrace, our soldiers and our families and make this a quite special and, I think, unique place in the Army."
Wawro passed command and responsibilities to Colonel Peter Minalga during Friday’s ceremony.
Minalga is coming from the Pentagon where he served as the joint doctrine division chief.
On Thursday, Fort Riley's Garrison Commander and Command Sergeant Major retired and passed their responsibilities on to their successors who will oversee the installation's day-to-day operations.
Several weeks ago, the 1st Armored Brigade Combat Team also held a change of command ceremony to bid farewell to its current commander and welcome its new commander.