Kahlert, Thomas A.

´╗┐Thomas A. Kahlert has lived in Huntsville since 1986. He attended Gordon Military College then completed his college work in 1968 at the University of Georgia where he was selected as the ROTC Distinguished Military Graduate. On January 7th of 1971 First Lieutenant Kahlert was serving as a crewmember of a reconnaissance aircraft in the Republic of Vietnam when another aircraft on the same mission came under heavy fire. With complete disregard for his own safety, he engaged the enemy with smoke rockets, which drew the enemy fire away from the embattled aircraft. He continued the dangerous mission by making low passes and pinpointing the enemy position while under heavy enemy fire. This action allowed US fighter aircraft to engage and destroy the enemy forces on the ground. For his heroism while participating in aerial flight Thomas Kahlert was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross. On the 14th of January 1971 Thomas Kahlert was piloting a reconnaissance aircraft in support of operations in Vietnam. Alerted to an emergency distress signal sent by a US Army Ranger team, Lieutenant Kahlert responded. Some two hours after locating the stricken Ranger team Lieutenant Kahlert observed enemy forces attempting to surround the team who were waiting for rescue helicopters to arrive. He skillfully attacked the enemy force and his accurate fire caused the enemy to withdraw. Upon arrival of the rescue helicopters lieutenant Kahlert directed the extraction and the team was saved. For heroism while engaged in aerial flight Thomas Kahlert was awarded the Air Medal with Valor.