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Kingsport native, Sullivan North grad promoted to brigadier general

Holly Viers • Aug 4, 2018 at 12:30 PM

KINGSPORT — When Kingsport native Michael Roache first learned he had been promoted to brigadier general, he was overcome with emotion.

“It was everything from disbelief, excitement and probably a little anxiety, followed by more of the same,” Roache said. “But in the end … I really came to rest on the reality of why this was so much less about me and anything that I have done and so much more about all of the people that have influenced me.”

Roache, a graduate of Sullivan North High School and a serviceman in the U.S. Army Reserve, was promoted to his new rank on July 20 at a ceremony in Los Alamitos, California.

As part of his new role, Roache has taken command of the Pacific Training Division of the 84th Training Command, which is based in Camp Parks, California. At the same time, Roache will maintain his civilian job in Georgia, where he currently lives with his family.

Military-minded

Roache comes from a long line of servicemen. His father served in the Army, his grandfather served in World War II and his great-grandfather served in World War I. Each one helped inspire Roache’s early love for the military.

After graduating from Sullivan North and Carson-Newman University, Roache was commissioned as a transportation officer through the Reserve Officers Training Corps in 1990.

Roache has served in numerous logistics and leadership roles and has received multiple awards and decorations. Most recently, Roache served as the chief of staff for the 79th Theater Sustainment Command in Los Alamitos, California, the second largest command in the U.S. Army Reserve.

“He started out as just a young man and worked his way up and has traveled to different parts of the world on behalf of the Army,” said Michael’s father, Edgar Roache. “So we’re just very thankful and very proud that he can accomplish what he’s accomplished.”

A new role

Roache officially took command of his new unit on July 22, two days after his promotion ceremony in California. Later this month, Roache will have a larger ceremony in Georgia, which his parents, both Kingsport residents, will attend.

“He loves America, and he’s traveled a lot and kept his civilian job, too,” said Michael’s mother, Carol Roache. “We are very proud of him, needless to say. He’s been a wonderful son.”

Roache credits his military success in large part to his many mentors, many of whom are in Kingsport.

“I’ve drawn a lot of energy knowing where I come from, just knowing that anything I accomplish is a reflection back on where I come from,” Roache said, “and it makes me really proud to come from Kingsport and just to represent the town.”

What’s next?

In the future, Roache plans to continue following the advice of his mentors, stay true to himself and serve to the best of his ability.

“If my time in service ends tomorrow, I will be very proud,” Roache said. “If it ends in five years, 10 years from now, I will be equally proud.”

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