EL CENTRO, Calif. (KYMA, KECY)- After almost three decades of services in the armed forces, Naval Air Facility El Centro Commanding Officer, Capt. Brent Alfonzo is calling it a career.
Capt. Alfonzo recalled what lead to his military career, was his childhood dream of flying among the clouds as a pilot.
"Starting as a young lieutenant in flight school and working up. The gift of being able to learn the job, do the job. To be able to pass that knowledge on to others has been a gift I've been able to do on multiple tours."
Capt. Alfonzo has served as the Commanding Officer of the Naval Air Facility El Centro since 2017.
On Friday, the Navy honored his dedication to his country with a prestigious ceremony as he retires.
Kristopher Haugh, Public Affairs Officer of the Naval Air Facility El Centro said about Friday's event, "They've given most of their formative years to the Navy or to the military in general. So we want to recognize all that they've done, all they've sacrificed. Additionally, all that their families have sacrificed."
Officials remembered Capt. Alfonzo for his leadership and courage.
Haugh added, "He trusted his people. He gave us the latitude to do our jobs. He always encouraged us to do the best. He encouraged us to think outside of the box."
Relieved of his duties, Capt. Alfonzo reflected what his time at the local naval air facility meant to his decorated career.
"Coming here, and serving in the capacity of the commanding officer, I've had the chance to see what this installation means to the navy and to naval aviation as a whole. And the group of people doing that work here, I can't say enough good things. And I can't say enough good things about the Imperial Valley community and how much the Imperial Valley community supports the Naval Air Facility El Centro."
Capt. Alfonzo will now go on terminal leave until he officially retires in April.