ROCK ISLAND ARSENAL, ILL - Today the Rock Island Arsenal Joint Manufacturing and Technology Center bid farewell to its highest ranking non-commissioned officer in a Relinquishment of Responsibility ceremony held in building 299 on Arsenal Island.

Sgt. Maj. Ceaser Roberts, Jr., RIA-JMTC's Sergeant Major relinquished his responsibility after serving as the factory's top NCO for nearly two years. Roberts will retire later this year at a ceremony to be held at Fort Bragg, N.C. after a career in the Army for more than 30 years.

As the RIA-JMTC Sergeant Major, Roberts assisted the commander in overseeing operations of the only multi-purpose and integrated metal manufacturer in the Department of Defense. Roberts served as the primary advisor to the commander on all matters pertaining to enlisted personnel. He also responded to the concerns of civilian employees in the organization.

Roberts was unsure about Rock Island Arsenal when he first received his orders. "When I found out that I was coming to Rock Island Arsenal I got the map out to see just where I was going, then I started to ask fellow Soldiers if they knew anything about Rock Island," said Roberts. "At first no one seems to know anything then I found one Soldier that did. She told me that I would love it here and it's one of the Army's best kept secrets. Well I must say, she was right, I really love it here and the Quad Cities has so much to offer."

In his remarks, Roberts explained the importance of RIA-JMTC, the Army's only integrated metal manufacturing facility. "I have enjoyed my time here at JMTC. This organization is truly unique and it is one that the Army must maintain. It is a valuable asset to the Department of Defense and provides the coverage that our Nation needs. "

The Commander of RIA-JMTC, Col. David J. Luders, in his remarks thanked Roberts for his service to the nation and the Arsenal.

"I speak for all of us when I say it's been a privilege to work alongside this extraordinary leader and this great teacher -- a man who has given so much for his country and the Army he loves," remarked Luders.

Roberts' career is highlighted at every level. He started his career as a Wheeled Vehicle Mechanic. Following that he graduated from Airborne School and was assigned to Bravo Company in the 82nd Combat Aviation Battalion at Fort Bragg, North Carolina.

Roberts went on to serve in key roles such as a Supply Sergeant, and a Transportation Sergeant. He was later assigned as the non-commission officer in charge at various headquarters battalions and companies.