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Army Gen. Ann E. Dunwoody, former commanding general of the Army Materiel Command, salutes during the playing of the national anthem at her retirement ceremony on Joint Base Myer-Henderson Hall in Arlington, Va., Aug. 15, 2012. U.S. Army photo by Staff Sgt. Teddy Wade

Army Gen. Ann E. Dunwoody, former commanding general of the Army Materiel Command, salutes during the playing of the national anthem at her retirement ceremony on Joint Base Myer-Henderson Hall in Arlington, Va., Aug. 15, 2012. U.S. Army photo by Staff Sgt. Teddy Wade

Ann Dunwoody, the first female four-star general in U.S. military history, officially retired on Wednesday with a ceremony at Joint Base Myer-Henderson Hall in Virginia.

Dunwoody spent 37 years in the Army, most recently as commander of the Army Material Commander.

By law, women are excluded from combat jobs, the typical path to four-star rank in the military. However, in 2005, Dunwoody became the Army’s top-ranking female when she received the promotion to lieutenant general (three stars) and became the Army’s Deputy Chief of Staff, G-4 (logistics).

She received her fourth star on November 14, 2008.

“[My wife] Deanie and I attended the retirement review for General Ann Dunwoody, who has served in the The U.S. Army for 37 years,” wrote Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff General Martin Dempsey. “Ann is not only the first female four-star officer in our nation’s history, she is also a leader in Army logistics, most recently at the U.S. Army Materiel Command. Her humility and steadfastness are an inspiration, and we wish Ann and her husband Craig the best in their retirement.”

Photos

Army Gen. Ann E. Dunwoody gives her farewell remarks during her retirement ceremony on Joint Base Myer-Henderson Hall in Arlington, Va., Aug. 15, 2012. U.S. Army photo by Staff Sgt. Teddy Wade

Army Gen. Ann E. Dunwoody gives her farewell remarks during her retirement ceremony on Joint Base Myer-Henderson Hall in Arlington, Va., Aug. 15, 2012. U.S. Army photo by Staff Sgt. Teddy Wade

Army Gen. Ann E. Dunwoody, former commanding general of the Army Materiel Command, and Army Col. James C. Markert inspect troops during Dunwoody’s retirement ceremony on Joint Base Myer-Henderson Hall in Arlington, Va., Aug. 15, 2012. Dunwoody, the first woman in the U.S. military to achieve the rank of four-star general, retired after 38 years of service. Markert commands the 3rd U.S. Infantry Regiment known as "The Old Guard." U.S. Army photo by Staff Sgt. Teddy Wade

Army Gen. Ann E. Dunwoody, former commanding general of the Army Materiel Command, and Army Col. James C. Markert inspect troops during Dunwoody’s retirement ceremony on Joint Base Myer-Henderson Hall in Arlington, Va., Aug. 15, 2012. Dunwoody, the first woman in the U.S. military to achieve the rank of four-star general, retired after 38 years of service. Markert commands the 3rd U.S. Infantry Regiment known as “The Old Guard.” U.S. Army photo by Staff Sgt. Teddy Wade

Army Chief of Staff Gen. Ray Odierno stands with Army Gen. Ann E. Dunwoody, former commanding general of the Army Materiel Command, during her retirement ceremony on Joint Base Myer-Henderson Hall in Arlington, Va., Aug. 15, 2012. U.S. Army photo by Eboni L. Everson-Myart

Army Chief of Staff Gen. Ray Odierno stands with Army Gen. Ann E. Dunwoody, former commanding general of the Army Materiel Command, during her retirement ceremony on Joint Base Myer-Henderson Hall in Arlington, Va., Aug. 15, 2012. U.S. Army photo by Eboni L. Everson-Myart

Army Chief of Staff Gen. Ray Odierno presents Army Gen. Ann E. Dunwoody, former commanding general of the Army Materiel Command, the Army Distinguished Service Medal to honor her 38 years of service on Joint Base Myer-Henderson Hall in Arlington, Va., Aug. 15, 2012. Dunwoody's husband, retired Air Force Col. Craig Brotchie, accompanied her during her retirement ceremony. U.S. Army photo by Staff Sgt. Teddy Wade

Army Chief of Staff Gen. Ray Odierno presents Army Gen. Ann E. Dunwoody, former commanding general of the Army Materiel Command, the Army Distinguished Service Medal to honor her 38 years of service on Joint Base Myer-Henderson Hall in Arlington, Va., Aug. 15, 2012. Dunwoody’s husband, retired Air Force Col. Craig Brotchie, accompanied her during her retirement ceremony. U.S. Army photo by Staff Sgt. Teddy Wade

Army Gen. Ann E. Dunwoody, former commanding general of the Army Materiel Command, speaks during her retirement ceremony on Joint Base Myer-Henderson Hall in Arlington, Va., Aug. 15, 2012. Army Chief of Staff Gen. Ray Odierno, center, and her husband, retired Air Force Col. Craig Brotchie, participated in the ceremony. U.S. Army photo by Eboni L. Everson-Myart

Army Gen. Ann E. Dunwoody, former commanding general of the Army Materiel Command, speaks during her retirement ceremony on Joint Base Myer-Henderson Hall in Arlington, Va., Aug. 15, 2012. Army Chief of Staff Gen. Ray Odierno, center, and her husband, retired Air Force Col. Craig Brotchie, participated in the ceremony. U.S. Army photo by Eboni L. Everson-Myart

Army Gen. Ann E. Dunwoody, her husband, retired Air Force Col. Craig Brotchie, other family members, Army Chief of Staff Gen. Ray Odierno, and his wife, Linda, stand together after Dunwoody’s retirement ceremony on Joint Base Myer-Henderson Hall in Arlington, Va., Aug. 15, 2012. U.S. Army photo by Staff Sgt. Teddy Wade

Army Gen. Ann E. Dunwoody, her husband, retired Air Force Col. Craig Brotchie, other family members, Army Chief of Staff Gen. Ray Odierno, and his wife, Linda, stand together after Dunwoody’s retirement ceremony on Joint Base Myer-Henderson Hall in Arlington, Va., Aug. 15, 2012. U.S. Army photo by Staff Sgt. Teddy Wade

Army Gen. Ann E. Dunwoody, former commanding general of the Army Materiel Command, stands with friends and family while applauding the troops during the march and review at her retirement ceremony on Joint Base Myer-Henderson Hall in Arlington, Va., Aug. 15, 2012. U.S. Army photo by Eboni L. Everson-Myart

Army Gen. Ann E. Dunwoody, former commanding general of the Army Materiel Command, stands with friends and family while applauding the troops during the march and review at her retirement ceremony on Joint Base Myer-Henderson Hall in Arlington, Va., Aug. 15, 2012. U.S. Army photo by Eboni L. Everson-Myart

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