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Hard work pays off in command position

  • Published
  • By Senior Master Sgt. Ray Lloyd
  • 107th Airlift Wing
The 107th Maintenance Group received a new commander, Col. Kevin Rogers, the former deputy commander of the same group, as he moved up to his new position here Saturday. A change of command ceremony was held in which he was also promoted to colonel.

On hand to pin on the eagle insignia were his wife, Antonina, and sister, retired Air Force Master Sgt. Madonna Rogers. Col. Rogers joined the 107th Airlift Wing in 1985 as an enlisted Airman in the base supply section. He has studied hard and worked his way up the ranks. Col. Rogers graduated from the State University of New York College at Buffalo in 1990 then received his commission as an officer in 1991.

Col. Rogers will be in charge of the maintenance group whose main mission is keeping the C-130H2 flying and mission ready.

"This is truly a humbling experience now being in charge of this group," said Col. Rogers. "It was never in my plans when I first joined the Air National Guard."

The outgoing commander, Col. Robert Kilgore, is leaving the 107th for an assignment at state headquarters as the director of plans and programs and commander of homeland response for the state.

"The maintenance group is one of the best in the Air National Guard and you're in good hands for the future having Col. Rogers leading," said Col. Kilgore.

The change of command ceremony is rooted in military history, dating back to the 18th century during the reign of King Frederick the great of Prussia. During this time, organizational flags were developed with color arrangements and symbols unique to each particular military unit. When a change of command took place, the outgoing commander would pass the flag to the individual assuming command. This gesture was accomplished in front of the entire unit so that all could see and witness the new commander assuming his position. He who controlled the flag also controlled the soldiers and their allegiance. The symbolic tradition of passing the guidon has survived through military history, and remains the key event of this military ceremony.