TERRE HAUTE, Ind. (WTHI)- Brigadier General Jeffery Hauser was the center of attention at the 181st Military base Saturday. It's a location he knows quite well.
"I tell ya it was almost thirty-eight years ago this week that I walked into this hanger," said General Hauser.
General Hauser served decades in the Indiana Air National Guard. He wanted to return to his roots in Terre Haute for his retirement ceremony.
"Most of them do the war memorial in Indianapolis. It’s very formal but I felt much more comfortable doing it in the hanger where I stated and wear the uniform I used most of my career when I was flying."
Leading up to retirement, General Hauser served as the air component commander at the Indiana joint force headquarters in Indianapolis, but he first served as a weapons loader in Terre Haute.
Under his leadership, the base transitioned from a fighter wing to an intelligence wing.
"I was the wing commander again when we switched that and I tell you the moral of those folks is unbelievable. Hopefully, we can pick up some new missions or expand the ones we have. You know the future, there is just so much they can do," said Hauser.
General Hauser received many prestigious honors including the Indiana Distinguished Service Medal as well as the Sagamore of the Wabash.
At the end of Saturday’s ceremony, Hauser walked off the stage as a retired officer but he is eager to see the future of the air national guard with the next generation of servicemen.
"they are awesome everything they do is just second to none and it didn't matter if we were flying airplanes or doing the intelligence wing and we are so proud of the airmen that we have that I would like to let them all know that," said Hauser.
Even though Hauser is retired from the air guard, has not stepped away from his passion for planes. He will still continue to work as the executive director of the Terre Haute Regional Airport.