CAMP CARROLL, Waegwan, South Korea – The 403rd Army Field Support Brigade welcomed Command Sgt. Maj. Christopher J. Reaves and said goodbye to retiring Command Sgt. Maj. John G. Ruiz at a change of responsibility ceremony here Feb. 10.
Reaves came to the 403rd AFSB from the 16th Ordnance Battalion, 59th Ordnance Brigade, Fort Lee, Virginia, where he served as the battalion command sergeant major.
Col. Wheeler R. Manning, brigade commander, and host for the ceremony, 403rd AFSB, praised Ruiz’s efforts.
“As you can tell from the biography in the program, Command Sgt. Maj. Ruiz is a well accomplished leader with a distinguished career that spans over three decades. I've literally spent hours, telling you about the amazing things he's done for this brigade, as well as this workforce,” Manning said.
“Command Sgt. Maj. Ruiz has built a reputation, a great reputation, with a people-first mentality. There simply is not enough time or words to mention all of his great contributions to both the organizational mission, the workforce, as well as the community. It has truly been a blessing and an honor to serve with you.”
Manning went on to welcome Reaves to the “Powerhouse” brigade.
“Command Sgt. Maj. Reaves is a skilled leader and logistician with a broad range of experience and knowledge of strategic sustainment operations. He served in multiple corps and divisions, as well as special operations assignments,” Manning said. “We're proud to have you on the team, and look forward to your great leadership and contributions to the unit and to the community.”
Ruiz is retiring after more than 31 years of active duty, and serving as the 403rd’s senior noncommissioned officer for 28 months, thanked a number of individuals including his family, brigade personnel and others from throughout his career.
“I’m lucky. This is a great organization,” Ruiz said. “Gina (wife), thank you, and thank you to my children and both of my commanders, of course Col. Manning, and my former commander Col. (retired) Mann. As the adage goes, thank you for teaching an old dog new tricks.”
Ruiz signed off with a list of unit slogans and his call sign – for the last time, “‘Army Strong,’ ‘Pacific Victor's,’ ‘On the Line,’ ‘Maintaining the Warriors,’ and ‘Katchi Kapshida’ (We go Together). Powerhouse Seven out.”
Reaves greeted those in attendance, as well as those watching the ceremony virtually, and expressed his eagerness to get started.
“I'm both excited and grateful for this opportunity to continue to serve our great Army,” Reaves said, “while working alongside our international partners to ensure the right materiels are delivered ‘On the Line’ to enable the ‘Pacific Victors’ to remain ready to ‘Fight Tonight.’
“I look forward to the challenges that lie ahead, and I'm fully dedicated to mission success as we continue our legacy of ‘Maintaining the Warriors,’” he added.
A retirement ceremony for Ruiz was held immediately following the change of responsibility ceremony, where he was awarded the Legion of Merit medal. He also received his certificate of retirement, a letter of appreciation from the Republic of Korea Army, a letter of congratulations from then-President Donald Trump, and numerous other items.
A welcome reception for Reaves was held later at the 403rd AFSB brigade headquarters on Camp Henry, Daegu.
To view/download photos of the Change of Responsibility, go to the Flickr Album at: https://www.flickr.com/photos/afsb403d/albums/72157718246321277
To view/download photos of the CSM Ruiz’s Retirement Ceremony, go to the Flickr Album at:
To view/download photos of CSM Reaves’ Welcome Reception, go to the Flickr Album at: https://www.flickr.com/photos/afsb403d/albums/72157718240970181