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Commander Kai "Wise Kai" Siegele

A native of Kansas, Commander Siegele graduated from the United States Naval Academy in 2006, earning a Bachelor of Science in Aerospace Engineering. CDR Siegele was commissioned through the Naval Academy and reported to the University of Kansas for immediate Graduate Education Program where he received a Master of Science in Aerospace Engineering in 2007.  He then reported to Pensacola, FL for flight training in January 2008. He earned his Wings of Gold in March 2010. In April 2010, CDR Siegele reported to the VAW 120 “Greyhawks” for initial fleet training as an E-2C Hawkeye pilot.

CDR Siegele began his operational flying in March 2011 with the “Bear Aces” of VAW 124.  While a “Bear Ace”, he made two deployments aboard USS GEORGE H. W. BUSH (CVN 77), participating in Operation NEW DAWN and Operation ENDURING FREEDOM.  During this tour CDR Siegele earned his LSO Wing Qualification.

CDR Siegele reported again to the FRS as an E-2 instructor in May 2014.  At VAW 120, he was qualified in the E-2C NAV-UP, E-2C CNS-ATM, and the E-2D advanced Hawkeye.  He continued to wave and earned his LSO Training Qualification in 2017.  He served as the Avionics Branch Officer as well as Assistant Student Control Officer.

CDR Siegele returned to the fleet in March of 2017 as a Super Junior Officer in VAW 125, the “Tigertails,” the E-2 Forward Deployed Naval Forces squadron.  While a Super JO, he deployed on two patrols in the Indo-Pacific and served as the Quality Assurance Officer.  CDR Siegele was then selected for Department Head and stayed with VAW 125 making two deployments on the USS RONALD REAGAN (CVN 76).  While with the Tigertails, he served as Maintenance Officer, Safety Officer, and Admin Officer. 

Following his department head tour, CDR Siegele served as an action officer, European Command, J-5/8 Directorate.  While on EUCOM staff, he planned, organized, and executed two staff talks between European Command and Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe (SHAPE).  He was selected for squadron command in March 2021 and reported to VAW 125 as Executive Officer in August 2022.

The professionalism and dedication of the Sailors of the Greyhawks, Bear Aces, and Tigertails have allowed CDR Siegele to accumulate over 3,000 flight hours and over 250 carrier arrested landings in the mighty Hawkeye. His awards include the Defense Meritorious Service Medal, Strike/Flight Air Medal (2 awards), Navy Commendation Medal (3 awards), and Navy/Marine Corps Achievement Medal (2 awards) and various service awards and ribbons.

Last Updated: 26 October 2023

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