As we celebrate Labor Day and head into the week of Patriot’s Day as well, WIDA would like to take time to celebrate those in our communities that choose to serve our country.
First up, we have Ryan Mace. Ryan is a resident of Macedonia and served in the United States Navy from 1992 to 1998 where he was trained to do Fire Control as a Tomahawk cruise missile weapon system operator/technician and harpoon cruise missile weapon system technician. His tour took him to the Naval Training Center Great Lakes (Basic training and Fire Control A school), San Diego, CA (Tomahawk and Harpoon school), Damneck, VA (Tomahawk school), Pearl Harbor, HI USS Ingersoll DD990, USS Port Royal CG73, and the Persian Gulf for deployment.
He said his time in the Navy was “a great opportunity to get an education in electronics and see places he never would have otherwise.” His list of experiences included Kwajalein (island in the Bikini Atoll), Guam, Japan, Hong Kong, Singapore, Philippines, Australia, Thailand, Singapore, Dubai, South Africa, and Mauritius.
Ryan says that having his military background on his resume has always been a benefit, but perhaps the greatest lesson from his time spent serving our country was learning how to function and stay calm under pressure.
If you know Ryan, you know he’s probably used those lessons over and over again as he raises his two daughters (ages 8 & 14), works in sales for a cabinet hardware supply company, and spends his free time deer hunting, fishing, target shooting, and enjoying the outdoors (mostly with his girls). Ryan is a natural jokester and outdoorsman, but always willing to help a friend.
Mace can tell you stories of jokes played on the International Dateline and underwater earthquakes he felt, but ultimately, he will tell you that “after seeing many different places and countries, the freedoms we have as Americans are truly unique and should not be taken for granted. We are lucky to live in the country we do with the freedoms we have.”
Mace is also part of the American Legion that serves the Riverside area which he said he joined shortly after his step-grandfather’s funeral service which included military honors performed by the Carson Legion at Wheeler Grove. He knew he wanted to be a part of it as “participating in honoring our fellow service members who have passed is truly humbling and an honor.”
Ryan, we thank you for your service not only to our country but to our community and our county. You exemplify commitment and love for our home!
Pottawattamie County salutes you, my friend!