FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WOWO): The Commander of Indiana's National Guard is retiring.
Adjutant General Martin Umbarger said in an open letter posted to the National Guard's website that he will step down in May after 45 years of service. Umbarger was appointed to the post by Governor Joe Kernan in March 2004 and later was re-appointed by Governor Mitch Daniels. Umbarger says he met with Governor Mike Pence to talk about his retirement Monday night. “There comes a time in everyone's life and career to pass the colors of leadership on to the next generation. This is not a sad day but a very happy day as I reflect on the honor of serving with the best men and women of our nation,” Umbarger said in the letter.
Umbarger began his military career as an enlisted soldier with the Army National Guard in 1969 and was commissioned a Second Lieutenant after graduating from the Indiana Military Academy in 1971. He had previously served as Commanding General of the Guard's 76th Infantry Brigade and Deputy Commanding General of the United States Forces Command.
The entire letter can be viewed below:
Dear Soldiers, Airmen, state employees, contractors, retirees and our families,
Yesterday evening Rowana and I met with Governor Mike Pence and informed him of my intent to retire next May after 45 years of service in the Indiana National Guard. It has been my highest honor and privilege to have served as your Adjutant General.
There comes a time in everyones life and career to pass the “colors of leadership” onto the next generation. This is not a sad day but a very happy day as I reflect on the honor of serving with the best men and women of our nation.
God bless all of you and your families. Proud to Serve!
Maj. Gen. R. Martin Umbarger