Vermillion Guard unit has new senior enlisted leader

South Dakota Army National Guard Sgt. 1st Class Michael Rath (left) accepts a ceremonial sword from Capt. Zach Hague, 730th Area Support Medical Company commander, during a Change of Responsibility ceremony in Vermillion, S.D., Dec. 1, 2012. The passing of the sword signifies the passing of responsibility from the outgoing senior noncommissioned officer to the incoming. Rath assumed the responsibility of first sergeant from1st Sgt. Douglas Mahoney.

(SDNG photo by Sgt. Jess Myers)

The South Dakota Army National Guard's 730th Area Support Medical Company has a new first sergeant following a Change of Responsibility ceremony Saturday, Dec. 1, in Vermillion. Outgoing 1st Sgt. Douglas Mahoney passed responsibility to Sgt. 1st Class Michael Rath.

Rath is now the senior non-commissioned officer for the 730th and will advise the unit's commander, Capt. Zachary Hauge, on all enlisted matters.

Rath, who has served in the 730th for 33 years, deployed twice with the 730th (Desert Storm, 1990-1991 and Operation Iraqi Freedom, 2003-2004). He has also served as a medic and overseen missions in places that include: Germany, Honduras, Jamaica, Hurricane Katrina and Suriname. His promotion to first sergeant is scheduled to be held during January drill.

Rath, lives in Vermillion, with his wife, Corinne. He recently retired from his civilian career as a mechanical supervisor for the University of South Dakota after 34 years.

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