PERU, Ind. (AP) — A new commander has been named for northern Indiana’s Grissom Air Reserve Base to replace the base leader who was removed from the position in March during an investigation of his job performance.
Grissom officials said the Air Force Reserve has appointed Col. Douglas Schwartz to command the 434th Air Refueling Wing. Schwartz has been the 927th Air Refueling Wing commander at MacDill Air Force Base in Florida since January 2013.
He is to take command at Grissom during a ceremony Sunday.
Schwartz replaces Col. Donald Buckley, who spent less than two years as commander of Grissom’s some 2,200 reservists and 16 KC-135 Stratotanker refueling planes.
The general who oversees Grissom removed Buckley from command and ordered a review of his performance to determine whether disciplinary action was necessary.
Col. Rob Palmer, director of public affairs for the Air Force Reserve Command, said Friday that no announcements had been made about the investigation and he didn’t immediately know the status of the review.
The new Grissom commander is familiar with the base located about midway between South Bend and Indianapolis.
Schwartz became an Air Force officer after graduating from Purdue University in 1980, according to his military biography. He was assigned to Grissom starting in 1992 as a Stratotanker pilot and rose to senior positions at the base over the next 15 years.
Schwartz has assigned since 2007 to bases in Florida, Illinois and California.
Schwartz said in a statement that he looked forward to returning to Indiana.
“No matter where I’ve been, I’ve always been impressed by the job the men and women of the 434th ARW do every single day, and it will be great to work alongside them once again,” he said.
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