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Wing holds Change of Command Ceremony

Col. Ralph Schwader, 139th Airlift Wing commander, speaks to members of the Wing after receiving command of the Wing on Jan. 5, 2014 at Rosecrans Air National Guard Base, St. Joseph, Mo.  (U.S. Air  National Guard photo by Senior Airman Sheldon Thompson)

Col. Ralph Schwader, 139th Airlift Wing commander, speaks to members of the Wing after receiving command of the Wing on Jan. 5, 2014 at Rosecrans Air National Guard Base, St. Joseph, Mo. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Senior Airman Sheldon Thompson)

Col. Ralph Schwader, (right) 139th Airlift Wing commander, salutes Maj. Gen. Stephen Danner, Missouri National Guard adjutant general, after receiving command of the Wing on Jan. 5, 2014 at Rosecrans Air National Guard Base, St. Joseph, Mo. (U.S. Air  National Guard photo by Senior Airman Sheldon Thompson)

Col. Ralph Schwader, (right) 139th Airlift Wing commander, salutes Maj. Gen. Stephen Danner, Missouri National Guard adjutant general, after receiving command of the Wing on Jan. 5, 2014 at Rosecrans Air National Guard Base, St. Joseph, Mo. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Senior Airman Sheldon Thompson)

St. Joseph, Mo. -- The 139th Airlift Wing held a change of command ceremony here Jan. 5 for its newest commander, Col. Ralph L. Schwader.

Schwader, a St. Joseph native and an experienced C-130 pilot, who has served as the wings vice commander since 2011, succeeds Col. Mike Pankau who retired with nearly 30 years of military service this year.

Maj. Gen. Steve Danner, adjutant general of the Missouri National Guard, announced in October Col. Schwader will assume command of the Wing.

"I'm very pleased to have an officer with Col. Schwader's proven track record of character and experience at the helm of the 139th," Danner said.

"I am very proud to be part of the 139th Airlift Wing and look forward to leading this team of combat-tested men and women veterans into the future," said Schwader.