On Sunday, January 8, the Delaware National Guard will host a change of command ceremony for the Delaware Air National Guard at its base in New Castle.
The change of command will be for the Assistant Adjutant General, Air, who leads over 1,000 Delaware Air Guardsmen and advises the Adjutant General on all matters relating to the equipping, training, and personnel of the Delaware Air National Guard.
Sunday’s ceremony will see the passing of command from retiring Brig. Gen. Wayne Merritt to Brig. Gen. Carol Timmons. Hundreds of Airmen will be in formation viewing.
This is another first for the Delaware Guard and for Timmons, who was the first female pilot and the first female general officer in the Delaware National Guard. She has been inducted into the Delaware Women’s Hall of Fame and the Delaware Aviation Hall of Fame.
Brig. Gen. Timmons has 34 years of military service, has served in multiple combat zones, and has commanded U.S. forces overseas. She became a helicopter pilot in the Delaware Army National Guard, flying UH-1 Huey’s, then become a fixed-wing pilot in the Air Force Reserve. She has spent most of her military career piloting C-130 Hercules aircraft, including during Operations Iraqi and Enduring Freedom.
She is a resident of Rehoboth Beach, Del. and flies Boeing 767 and 757 commercial passenger airplanes for United Airlines.
“I am very pleased to appoint General Timmons to this auspicious leadership position. Carol has proven experience, dedication, and commitment to our Delaware National Guard,” says Maj. Gen. Frank Vavala, Adjutant General.
Outgoing Assistant Adjutant General, Air Brig. Gen. Wayne Merritt took the position in September 2010. This position is the pinnacle of his career as he retires upon the change of command.
Merritt enlisted in the Delaware Air National Guard in January 1969 and was commissioned as a second lieutenant in 1982. He served in multiple roles as a logistics officer. He commanded the 166th Aerial Port Flight and the 166th Logistics Squadron, and served as Director of Support for the Delaware Air National Guard.
Brig. Gen. Merritt resides in Hockessin, Del. and serves as the Senior Manager of Operations for New Castle County Special Services.
“It has been a distinct pleasure to work with such a great leader and Airman in General Merritt. His devotion to the Guard and the Airmen he led was always evident. I wish him all the best in his well-deserved retirement,” says Vavala.