Brig. Gen. Kurt J. Ryan, incoming Military Surface Deployment and Distribution Command commanding general, pinned on the rank of Major General during a ceremony conducted yesterday in the Seay Auditorium.Lt. Gen. Stephen R. Lyons, deputy commander, U.S. Transportation Command, officiated the ceremony.Lyons and Ryan go way back and their careers have crossed paths many times, having first met in the 82nd Airborne Division when Ryan was a brand new Second Lieutenant and Lyons was a young Captain.
Relating details of Ryan's notable career, Lyons said "Kurt has been at the spearhead of every major operation in the last 30 years."Among the numerous distinguished guests attending the ceremony were Air Force Gen. Darren McDew, commander of U.S. Transportation Command, and Command Sgt. Maj. James K. Sims, Army Materiel Command's top enlisted leader.Also joining Ryan at the ceremony were several members of his immediate family, including wife Jennifer, daughter Madison, and parents David and Sonja Alcon from York, Pennsylvania. Jennifer's mother, Jeri Nagle, and niece, Kelsea Yarnell, also made the trip from Pennsylvania to attend the promotion ceremony.Speaking about the Ryan family, Lyons noted that while the strength of our Army lies in our families, "the strength of Kurt is Jennifer and Madison.""Jennifer is the quintessential Army Wife," continued Lyons, "and Madison is the very definition of an 'Army kid.'"Both Jennifer and Madison assisted Lyons with applying Ryan's new 2-star rank, after which Ryan's new 2-star general officer's flag was unfurled.Ryan said he was exceptionally pleased to be selected to command SDDC and, referencing both U.S. Transportation Command and Army Materiel Command, stated he "couldn't be on a better Team of Teams."A self-described student of history, Ryan added that following a recent visit to the National Archives in Washington, D.C., he has lately been studying about our nation's early history, particularly the U.S. Constitution, and thus asked Lyons to reaffirm his Oath of Office.Ryan is scheduled to take command of SDDC during an 11a.m. ceremony today at Hangar 1 on Scott Air Force Base. He will be the command's 20th commanding general.Prior to this assignment, Ryan served as the Chief of Ordnance and commandant of the U.S. Army Ordnance School.