MAJ Kyle David Petroskey
October 15, 1978 – April 2, 2015
Major Kyle Petroskey was the type of man who was successful throughout his life in everything he pursued. Born in Wayne, Michigan Kyle graduated from Plymouth Salem high school in 1997 and was recruited by one of the best schools in the nation, West Point. Kyle epitomized the student athlete concept, graduating with a degree in mechanical engineering and also being a part of the varsity-swim team holding fastest time records to this day and attending the military Olympics held in Croatia in 1999. After graduating with the class of 2001 and moving to Fort Rucker, Alabama, he would distinguish himself at the Army’s Aviation center. As a Blackhawk pilot, he would not only have the honor of leading troops in combat twice in Iraq, but also later command them in Afghanistan. He was also stationed in South Korea for 2 years prior to the middle east deployments.
A natural pilot, he would be offered one of only 36 slots at the prestigious U.S. Naval Test Pilot School, a school specifically designed to, among other things, provide instruction to experienced pilots to “investigate and develop new flight techniques.” Training to be an experimental pilot meant that Kyle could give back to the Blackhawk community that gave him so much. Kyle was always putting the needs of others before his own; he was a truly selfless individual.
Yet, mere days from finishing his test pilot course, he was diagnosed with Tracheal cancer. Suddenly, after years of personal sacrifice through attending military schools and multiple deployments, he faced a new and different challenge, coming with his wife, Jamie, to Walter Reed for treatment.
There’s an old saying that “it’s easy to be a saint in paradise.” Essentially, it’s easy to be upbeat when things are going your way. In this case, it would have been understandable if suddenly Major Petroskey became a different man, bitter and frustrated. Instead, he continuously showed his deep strength of character, always focusing on his recovery with Job-like patience. Buoyed by his unwavering faith, loving family, and the devoted and selfless love of his wife, he relentlessly battled his illness with grace and goodwill to all he came in contact with. The endless love shared between Kyle and his wife Jamie was visible to everyone they met through their years of battle with cancer. Kyle’s strength was pushed beyond by the support and nurse duties his wife expertly fulfilled.
As further testament to his resiliency, Major Petroskey returned to graduate with his classmates at the U.S. Naval Pilot School last summer. Kyle’s perseverance and determination to fight his disease was unrelenting even to the very last moment. Above all, Major Petroskey personified the fact that good leaders fight for their principles, but great leaders live up to them.
Kyle’s surviving family, Mother Sandra Petroskey, Father Larry Petroskey, Little Sister Tara, Older Brothers Ryan and Brett Petroskey were in constant support of Kyle. The love that was shared between Kyle and his siblings was the kind of love that has no bounds and lasts forever. Kyle would have done anything for anyone of them should they only ask. Kyle’s heart was larger than his being and anyone that knew him could feel it.
On April 2, 2015 Kyle passed away at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center with family and his loving wife by his side. He was honored by staff, respected military friends and family in a ceremony held at the hospital chapel on April 8, 2015 and will be again honored by services and burial at Arlington National Cemetery on August 5, 2015.
Major Petroskey didn’t just have dreams, but also the rare talent it takes to fulfill them. And the fact that his love of country led him to choose this uniform as a vehicle for realizing them is especially humbling and inspirational to all. Kyle will forever be loved, respected and held in our thoughts.
West Point Cullum: http://apps.westpointaog.org/Memorials/Article/58186/
West Point Eulogies: http://defender.west-point.org/service/eulogies.mhtml?u=58186
West Point Twitter: https://twitter.com/wpaog/status/585152213577760768
Article regarding his battle: http://www.somdnews.com/article/20140718/NEWS/140719365/1044&source=RSS&template=gazette
Jamie will be purchasing a paver as well as working with the Swim Team Coach to also memorialize Kyle at Crandal Pool, as the pool and his team mates were what shaped him as a man and Officer, and were always in his thoughts. There will also be a memorial at The U.S. National Test Pilot School.
Tuesday, August 4, 2015
Graveside with Full Military Honors
Wednesday, August 5, 2015
MAJ Kyle David Petroskey
December 28, 2015
I served with Kyle between 2005 and 2006 in Baghdad. He was a stand up guy and an outstanding officer. My condolences to his family and friends.
August 21, 2015
Kyle was a great officer and a great friend. My sincere condolences to all his family, he will be missed.
August 4, 2015
Ryan and Karla, so very sorry for the loss of your brother. Sandy and Rick Nelson
June 7, 2015
Sandy and Larry, we are so sorry for the loss of your son. This is such sad news. I understand how you feel. Our son died in 1985. I hope your memories will help you through this terrible time. Sandy & Rich Kolano
June 7, 2015
Sandy and Larry, Rick and I just heard the news. Our hearts are breaking for you. There just aren't words to express our sadness for you, your family and Jamie. May your wonderful memories of Kyle sustain you. Rick and Jeri Sutton
June 6, 2015
Larry and Sandy, So sorry to hear this sad news. Peace be with you and the family. Debbie & Bob Barr
April 30, 2015
OH I am so sorry about this... my heart is broken for my girl friend Jamie and all the families!!!!!!!!! Thank you for your service mighty hero... forever you will live in our hearts!!! Love Lydia and Dan Shelton