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Kahele_USAFMajor Kaialiʻi Kahele (Kai) is a 15 year veteran and commissioned officer in the United States Air Force, Hawaiʻi Air National Guard.

Major Kahele received his commission in 2001 from the Academy of Military Science, McGhee Tyson Air National Guard Base in Knoxville, Tennessee. Currently a rated Command Instructor Pilot in the C-17 Globemaster III, Kai earned his USAF pilot wings at Columbus Air Force Base, Mississippi where he flew the T-37 and T-38 Talon.

Upon receiving his USAF wings in the Spring of 2002, Kai attended the Advanced Fighter Training Program at Moody Air Force Base, Georgia and the F-15 RTU course at Kingsley Field, Klamath Falls Oregon. Kai also attended and graduated from the C-130 Hercules course at Little Rock Air Force Base, Arkansas, the C-17 Globemaster III course at Altus Air Force Base, Oklahoma and USAF combat and water survival courses.

During the period between 2004-2012, Major Kahele flew extensively in Operations Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom logging over 2000 hours of military flight time and commanding 100+ combat missions.

In 2014 Major Kahele became a flight commander in the 204th Airlift Squadron and would then become the Airlift Control Team Chief for the 613th Air Operations Center Air Mobility Division at Pacific Air Forces, Hickam Air Force Base, Hawaiʻi.

Currently Major Kahele serves in the 201st Air Operations Group, HIANG, as the Airlift Control Team lead planner. Earlier this year Major Kahele was recognized as the PACAF 613th Air Operations Center Guard Officer of the Year, Headquarters Pacific Air Forces Guard Officer of the Year and the Hawaiʻi Air National Guardʻs Launa ʻOle Traditional Guard Officer of the Year.

Flight Information:

Rating: Command Instructor Pilot

Flight Hours: 3000+

Aircraft Flown: T-37, T-38, T-38C, F-15C, C-130, C-17

Pilot Wings From: Columbus AFB, Mississippi

Major Awards & Decorations:

Meritorious Service Medal

Air Force Commendation Medal

Air Medal (Combat Missions Flown in Afghanistan)

National Defense Service Medal

Global War on Terrorism Service Medal

Armed Forces Reserve Medal

Hawaiʻi State Active Duty Ribbon

Combat Readiness Medal

AF Outstanding Unit Award

AF Expeditionary Service Ribbon

2015 Headquarters Pacific Air Forces Guard Officer of the Year

2015 PACAF 613th Air Operations Center Guard Officer of the Year

2015 Hawaiʻi Air National Guard Launa ʻOle Traditional Guard Officer of the Year

2007 C-17 Globemaster Distinguished Graduate