Kansas Army National Guard Command Sergeant Major John Ryan at his retirement ceremony.
TOPEKA, Kan. (WIBW) - The Kansas Army National Guard celebrated a lifetime of service for one of its leaders and welcomed a new senior noncomissioned officer Sunday at Nickell Armory on 2722 SW Topeka Boulevard.
Outgoing Command Sergeant Major John Ryan passed on the NCO sword, and with it the responsibilities of his post, to incoming Command Sergeant Major James Moberly.
Ryan is retiring after 39 years of service with the guard.
"Today is a very emotional day for me," Ryan said. "When you have nearly 40 years of building relationships and camaraderie with the soldiers and airmen of the Kansas National Guard, it's emotional to think that you're not going to have that same day to day interaction. But they are truly friends for eternity," he said.
In a heartfelt farewell speech, Ryan also thanked his wife Wanda and their three children for supporting him and his mission through all the years.