Our classmate Michael Albert Ryan (75) was promoted to Brigadier General on November 3, 2006 in Wiesbaden, Germany (he's stationed there since June 2005).

Mike entered P.5 with us, and left DBS after finishing Form 4.

He joined the U.S. Army's Tank Corps after finishing university, and has now been with the Army for about 25 years already. He's been mostly overseas, having been posted in Germany, Bosnia, Kosovo and the Middle East (twice in Iraq after Saddam's capture). Next week, he'll be going to Afghanistan.

Here's what Mike said about his education at DBS:-
"I am absolutely convinced my time at DBS and in HK prepared me for success in studies, discipline, teamwork and cameraderie with diverse friends and so on, which saw me in good stead for my 5 tours in Germany, and when I was on a NATO mission in Bosnia in the 90's, negotiating and working with Russians, Romanians, Bulgarians, Serbs, Iraqis, Koreans and now soon-to-be working for a British 3-star General in Afghanistan."

75-ers are very proud to have studied under one roof with Mike, who very possibly is the first ever U.S. general that DBS has ever produced!!!


1st Armored Division pins new brigadier general

Story and Photos by Spc. Andrew Orillion, 1st Armored Division Public Affairs
Photo by Sgt. Samuel Smith, 1st Armored Division Public Affairs

November 3, 2006

Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer once boasted that it had more stars than in the heavens. The 1st Armored Division may give MGM a run for its money, having just added another star to its roster, the newly pinned Brig. Gen. Michael A. Ryan, assistant division commander (Maneuver). Ryan was promoted to the rank of brigadier general during a ceremony at Wiesbaden Army Airfield Nov. 3.

The ceremony was presided over by Maj. Gen. Fred D. Robinson Jr., division commander. Robinson spoke of his firm belief in the abilities of the 1st AD's newest brigadier general.

"Only one out of approximately 300 officers in any year group and 2% of all colonels will ever rise to the rank of general officer," Robinson said. "That speaks volumes about the quality of the officer himself and it sees even more about the efforts of the leaders and Soldiers who have molded him along the way."

Robinson continued, by mentioning a few of Ryan's many accomplishments as ADCM. Ryan has held this position since July 2005.

"As ADCM, Ryan concentrated his efforts on reconstituting, training and building leaders throughout the division, making sure that they are all prepared for battle in this global war on terror,"

Robinson said. "I have never met an officer with greater dogged determination to insure the readiness of units."

Robinson concluded his remarks by reaffirming his faith in the leadership abilities of his newest one star.

"I know of no officer more deserving of this than you, there is no doubt that you will continue to make a difference for every Soldier in this division," Robinson said.

After being officially pinned by Robinson, and being given his new kevlar and pistol belt, Ryan took the podium and spoke about his new rank and what it meant to him.

"Promotions are thought by some to be a very personal recognition which then triggers a very long and torturous monologue using every permutation of the personal pronoun and an excruciating trip down memory lane," Ryan said. "We are going to avoid some of this."

Ryan's self-effacing sense of humor eventually gave way when he spoke about the responsibilities that come with any promotion.

"With every promotion there is a greater opportunity to train and care for our Soldiers, to fight bureaucracy and apply common sense to challenges," Ryan said. "If you accept a promotion with the intent of doing everything in your power to make a positive impact on the unit and its Soldiers, then I suspect that you will never be disappointed."

Ryan concluded his speech by thanking God, his family and all the troopers he served with over the years. He also offered a last bit of reflection on a career spent in service to his country.


Two classmates living in the States were recently reunited with the '75ers after almost thirty years:-

Gada Asvaraksh (Featherstone)

Many of you would remember Gada as the stylish hurdler in B grade in the 70's amongst many of his other talents in music and sports (swimming, cricket, badminton...), not to mention his popularity with girls from DGS, MCS, KGV, and the list goes on and... Gada was a fine representative of DBS in many sports and had won many medals in various inter-school competitions. Gada lives in Boston now and is a senior executive with the Hilton Hotel Group where he's been working with for over ten years. He is married with four beautiful children and the eldest two are attending Boston University. Here's a photo of Gada with his son Sebastian.

Gada & son
Michael Ryan (Arthur)

Mike, one of the few American boys studying at DBS in the seventies, left DBS after F.4 and finished his high school in Jakarta. He then went to the Arizona State University and enrolled in a program which offered a full scholarship plus eventually got him commissioned as an Army officer upon graduation. Mike is now a full Colonel and has done assignments in Kosovo, Bosnia, the Middle East, Germany and also a stint as a Tank Brigade Commander in Fort Hood, Texas, with 5,000 soldiers and hundreds of tanks under his command. Mike has been with the U.S. Army for 23 years now and still loving it!

Mike recently returned to America after spending several months in Baghdad, Iraq on a 'special' assignment. He is married and has a 12 year old boy who aspires to be a fighter pilot (sorry, Mike!). In his spare time, Mike likes to inspect his neighbourhood riding on one of his Harleys.

Reprinted here is a photo of Mike relaxing by a man-made lake around one of Saddam's many palaces. Best wishes to Mike and we are proud he'll be the first DBS boy to become a General in the US Army very soon.

Mike by the water









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