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General Via to retire after leaving Army Materiel Command Friday

REDSTONE ARSENAL, Ala. - Gen. Dennis L. Via will relinquish command of the Army Materiel Command during a ceremony, Friday.

Gen. Via assumed command of the AMC in August 2012. He is 18th Commanding General of AMC but the first to serve his entire tenure at Redstone Arsenal.

He's one of only about a dozen four-star generals; only of just eight African-American four-star generals, ever; and, the first Signal Corps officer to achieve the rank.

Gen. Via will officially retire during a ceremony next month at Fort Myer, outside Washington D.C.

He says it is a bittersweet transition. However, he and his wife are looking forward to spending more time with family in Virginia.

During Friday's ceremony, Gen. Via will hand over control of the command to Lt. Gen. Gustave F. Perna.

Perna will be promoted to the rank of General prior to the change of command.

Hundreds of people are expected to attend the event, which will be hosted by Gen. Mark Milley, U.S. Army Chief of Staff.