Defense Logistics Agency Disposition Services’ director marked the end of his three-decade Army career at a retirement ceremony April 11 at the primary-level field activity’s headquarters in Battle Creek, Mich.
Army Col. Richard Bezold began his DLA tour in mid-2013 as the DLA Disposition Services deputy director. He took over as the director when then Twila Gonzales left to become DLA Distribution’s deputy director in November. He is being replaced by Air Force Col. Michael Cannon.
Gonzales presided over the ceremony and presented her former deputy with the Defense Superior Service Medal. According to the medal’s citation, Bezold helped improve the effectiveness of DLA’s Law Enforcement Support Office and developed hub-based teams that better serve warfighters at forward locations in Afghanistan. Gonzales said Bezold “completely embodies” the Army core values and had been “awesome” as both director and deputy director.
“Because he has set the right tone for the workforce, we are having great success,” Gonzales said. “Thank you for your service and your tremendous leadership and your friendship.”
Bezold addressed the audience with a short speech, highlighting the changes that have taken place during his career.
“Communists were our enemy, gas was $1.20 a gallon, we were watching ‘The Cosby Show’ and ‘Cheers’ on TV, [and] the Bears had a good football team.”
Bezold said he never really intended to make the Army a career.
“Throughout the past 29 years, I’ve been to a number of places. But it’s not about the places, it’s been about being part of something bigger than yourself, being part of something that’s truly important: the defense of the Constitution, the country and our way of life,” he said. “Most importantly, it’s about the people who were part of or supported that. Those people, in those places, likeminded others that swore to protect and defend the constitution against all enemies foreign and domestic … are the reason I stayed in, the reason the Army has been my life.”
Bezold thanked his wife, Young Soon, saying “any modicum of success I’ve had” was because of her support.
Staff members presented Bezold with a variety of proclamations, letters of appreciation, tributes and awards that marked the successes of his short time with DLA.
Bezold said he would return to his native Kentucky, the state he had considered home throughout his career.
Army Col. Richard Bezold, former DLA Disposition Services director, addresses friends, family and DLA staff April 11 at DLA Disposition Services headquarters in Battle Creek, Mich. Bezold’s DLA tour began in mid-2013 as the primary-level field activity activity’s deputy director. Photo by Jace Armstrong
DLA Distribution Deputy Director Twila Gonzales and former DLA Disposition Services Director Army Col. Richard Bezold pose with Bezold's official Certificate of Retirement April 11. Photo by Jace Armstrong