Colonel Robert Germani Jr., Vice Commander, 143d Airlift Wing, Retires After 34 Years of Dedicated Service

Colonel Arthur Floru (right), 143d Airlift Wing Commander, presents Colonel Robert Germani Jr. (left), outgoing 143d Airlift Wing Vice Commander with the Legion of Merit upon his retirement after 34 years of dedicated service to the Rhode Island National Guard. National Guard Photo by Technical Sgt Jason Long (RELEASED)

Colonel Arthur Floru (right), 143d Airlift Wing Commander, presents Colonel Robert Germani Jr. (left), outgoing 143d Airlift Wing Vice Commander with the Legion of Merit upon his retirement after 34 years of dedicated service to the Rhode Island National Guard. National Guard Photo by Technical Sgt Jason Long (RELEASED)

Colonel Arthur Floru (right), 143d Airlift Wing Commander, presents Colonel Robert Germani Jr. (left), outgoing 143d Airlift Wing Vice Commander witha replica of the 143d Airlift Wing Guidon upon his retirement after 34 years of dedicated service to the Rhode Island National Guard. National Guard Photo by Technical Sgt Jason Long (RELEASED)

Colonel Arthur Floru (right), 143d Airlift Wing Commander, presents Colonel Robert Germani Jr. (left), outgoing 143d Airlift Wing Vice Commander witha replica of the 143d Airlift Wing Guidon upon his retirement after 34 years of dedicated service to the Rhode Island National Guard. National Guard Photo by Technical Sgt Jason Long (RELEASED)

03/01/2014 -- In a packed auditorium of family, friends and fellow Airmen of the 143d Airlift Wing, a heartfelt goodbye was said to an icon of the Wing's leadership - most importantly a friend to all.

Colonel Robert Germani Jr. retired after more than 34 years of diligent and dedicated service to the Rhode Island National Guard. Wing Commander Arthur Floru remarked on Col Germani's legacy of professionalism and dedication to duty, "Bob made major changes in the evolution of the warrior team. He put a human face on things. He was an absolute expert on getting the job done and getting us to the finish line."

Brigadier General Mark Jannitto, Deputy Adjutant General, Rhode Island National Guard thanked Col Germani and his family for their sacrifice during his service to the best organization in the world, the Rhode Island Air National Guard. As a longtime friend and coworker BG Jannitto praised Col Germani by saying, "No can do, does not exist in Bobby's vocabulary. He was the king of delegation. He knew who to go to, to get things done."

During his speech Col Germani reflected on his father, the late Sergeant Major Robert Germani Sr.'s military achievements. SGM Germani had also received the Legion of Merit which Col Germani had been awarded during the retirement ceremony. "Two in one household. Pretty good," Col Germani added, "I am truly humbled by all this fuss and fanfare. So, thank you, Art [Floru] and all the presenters today."

Colonel Germani closed his retirement speech by saying, "It's the people I'm going to miss, the camaraderie." He added, "Please be kind to one another and continue the great work that you do." And in classic Col "G" fashion, he rendered a crisp salute to the men and women of the 143d Airlift Wing said "Colonel Germani is OUT!"

The Airmen of the 143d Airlift Wing wish Colonel Germani good luck and Godspeed in his retirement. Thank you for your dedication to the Rhode Island National Guard.
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