It is with great sadness to announce the passing of my uncle SP5 Kevin Dale of Minneapolis, Minnesota. Kevin served with the 57th Medevac “Original Dustoff” for 21 months in Vietnam. Like many of his crewmembers before him, Kevin succumb to his long battle with cancer at age 60 and departed on his final mission at 16:30 30 JULY 2012, joining fellow members such as Kevin Donoghue, Mike Novosel Jr., and many more.
Kevin trained as an aircraft crew chief on the UH-1 Huey helicopter at age 17, and was stationed in Savanna, GA until he turned 18, thus went on to Vietnam where he joined the 57th MED which was co-located with the 82nd MED in 1970. He extended to stay in Vietnam for a total of 21 months completing many missions with the men he loved to serve with.
He returned to Minnesota and entered college in law enforcement and was hired as a police officer by Spring Lake Park, MN Nov 01, 1973 at the age of 21. He was an officer with Spring Lake Park Police, Blaine Police returned to Spring Lake Park when he retired with 20 years of Police service. Kevin was the husband of Melinda Dale, Father of Ryan Dale and Molly Dale Hakko, Grandfather of Robert Dale and a friend to many.
Kevin made it to DUSTOFF reunions in the past few years but was too sick to attend the last one, although he told me he really tried to make it. Later in my life I ended up serving as a DUSTOFF pilot in Iraq and it only brought my uncle Kevin and me closer; we talked and shared stories. I helped him get in touch with old friends on Web sites such as the Dustoff.org where he could connect – it meant the world to him in his later years. Kevin was suffering greatly in these last few years with not only the cancer but with his thoughts. I’m grateful to know the suffering is over and he is at peace. It pains me to write this because I miss him so vey much, but I wanted to let the DUSTOFF community, and maybe his old friends, that he is at peace now. I love you Kevin; I miss you.