Command Chief honored during retirement ceremony

  • Published
  • By Senior Master Sgt. Emily Beightol-Deyerle
  • 167th Airlift Wing

A retirement ceremony was held at the 167th Airlift Wing to honor the career of the wing’s eighth command chief master sergeant, Oct. 14, 2023.

Command Chief Master Sgt. Troy Brawner served as the 167th’s senior enlisted leader (SEL) for the last four years of his 34-year career.

As noted during the ceremony by Brig. Gen. David Cochran, West Virgnia National Guard Assistant Adjutant General-Air, Brawner carried out the multitude of SEL responsibilities as a Drill Status Guardsmen (DSG).

“He was the first DSG to the take the position of command chief and you would never have known [that he was a DSG],” Cochran said.

Brawner was presented with the Legion of Merit during the ceremony. The citation for the award reads, in part, “Excelling in his commitment to Airmen, and throughout his tenure, he was deeply involved with force development selections for national opportunities, and a vital voice in the West Virginia Air Nation Guard’s force management decisions.”

Brawner started his military career in the 167th Aerial Port Squadron where he served in various capacities throughout his tenure there and deployed numerous times in support of Operations Desert Storm, Desert Shield, Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom.   

In 2016 he moved into the role of superintendent for the 167th Mission Support Group and in 2019 he was selected as the wing’s command chief.

Col. Martin Timko, 167th Airlift Wing commander, said family, energy and unity are three concepts that characterize Brawner.

“This is a direct reflection of your upbringing, your values, and what is most important in fulfilling the calling of military service to this nation, commitment and duty to the people that comprise it,” Timko said. “And the strongest core of the people is the family unit.”

Brawner said his retirement marks a time of transition, reflection and gratitude, and his family’s support has been his anchor.

Brawner closed his remarks with two pieces of advice, “step out of your comfort zone as often as you can and enjoy the ride.”