ABERDEEN PROVING GROUND, Md. - The senior explosive ordnance disposal (EOD) officer for the 20th Chemical, Biological, Radiological, Nuclear, Explosives (CBRNE) Command, Col. Marty Muchow, was recognized for his 30 years of service to our nation during a retirement ceremony held in front of the former Ordnance Corps headquarters (1940 - 2008) on Aberdeen Proving Ground, Oct. 18.
The audience included present and former commanding generals, fellow EOD professionals, numerous Soldiers, civilians, several close friends, and members of his family. His wife of 24 years, Army Col. Sandy Muchow, his mother Barb Muchow and his sisters Mel and Marsha were all seated in the front row during the ceremony.
Brig. Gen. Heidi J. Hoyle, the 41st Chief of the United States Army Ordnance Corps and commandant of the Army Ordnance School, presided over the ceremony.
"It is an honor and pleasure to be here to recognize more than 30 years of dedicated service of one of the finest EOD officers I know, Colonel Marty Muchow," said Hoyle.
Muchow, a former commander of 52nd Ordnance Group (EOD), and Hoyle, a former commander of 71st Ordnance Group (EOD), were group commanders at the same time and have known each other since they were both captains.
"It has been one [incredible] ride. 30 years has gone by so quick," said Muchow, a native of Hartford, South Dakota.
During his career, Col. Muchow served in company through joint-level assignments for EOD. He commanded at the company, battalion, and group level; as well as multiple long and short overseas tours to include two combat deployments. His most notable assignment was commanding the 63rd EOD Battalion during a deployment.
"I had the distinct honor of deploying the battalion headquarters to Iraq," shared Muchow. "[We] led a joint EOD battalion task force of Army, Navy, and Air Force EOD techs as part of Task Force Troy."
However the highlight of his career was meeting his wife Sandy at the ordnance advanced course where he also received a slot for the Naval School of Explosive Ordnance Disposal.
During his remarks, Muchow thanked all of the Soldiers who have deployed during the War on Terror. He made sure to recognize the immense sacrifices of the EOD community, especially the fallen EOD technicians whose names are on the EOD Memorial Wall at Eglin Air Force Base.
"Your sacrifices brings to mind the words of Winston Churchill, Great Britain's Prime Minister during World War II when he said of British pilots and crews in the Battle of Britain - 'Never in the field of human conflict was so much owed by so many to so few.'"
During the awards portion, Muchow received his retirement flag from Sgt. Maj. David Rio, a fellow EOD technician, who was wearing a full bomb suit for the presentation.
Muchow, who will not officially leave the Army until March 2019, shared his plans after leaving active duty.
"I plan on hunting, fishing, and spending more time with Sandy... Who knows, I may even run for Congress so I can be part of the EOD Caucus to ensure the Army continues to respect and value EOD forces."
Hoyle tried to put into context what 30 years of service means.
"How can you adequately describe the impact of a 30 year career, or measure the countless sacrifices, or weigh the risk to personal safety inherent in every EOD mission?" asked Hoyle when talking to Muchow. "The truth is...you can't. All we can do is offer you our humble but very sincere thanks - for your service to our Nation, our Army, and our Soldiers."