Heads of California Air Guard, Fresno Fighter Wing Removed from Command

Maj. Gen. Clay Garrison—shown here while greeting Mykola Melnychuk, mayor of Starokostiantyniv, Ukraine, during the opening ceremony for Clear Sky 2018 exercise at Starokostiantyniv AB, Ukraine, on Oct. 8, 2018—has been relieved from his command of the California Air National Guard. Air National Guard photo by TSgt. Charles Vaughn.

The head of the California Air National Guard and a wing commander in the state have been relieved of command after an Air Force Inspector General report and a newspaper investigation found a culture of reprisal.

Maj. Gen. Clay Garrison, head of the California ANG, and Col. Dan. Kelley, commander of the 144th Fighter Wing in Fresno, were relieved after the IG found they failed to “maintain a positive command climate” and the California Military Department lost its “faith, trust, and confidence” in their leadership, the department told the Los Angeles Times.

The Times in February published a lengthy investigation into the California Air National Guard, finding reprisal and attempted cover ups of an investigation stemming from an incident where a female airman in the 144th FW found that someone in her unit urinated in her boots.

The airman was one of five who had filed formal complaints with wing leadership for reprisals or complaints of improper conduct by superiors, according to the Times.

Brig. Gen. Gregory Jones, the assistant adjutant general of the California Air National Guard, has taken over command, while Col. Jeremiah Cruz was named Kelly’s interim replacement.