January 7, 1941—January 6, 2023
Kelly Klein passed away unexpectedly at home in Colorado Springs on the eve of his 82nd birthday, with his wife by his side.
Kelly was born in Tupelo, Mississippi, and graduated from Greenville High School. He earned an undergraduate degree from Delta State University and a Masters Degree in Meteorology from Texas A&M University. As an Air Force officer, Kelly was stationed around the world, including Japan, Vietnam, the Pentagon, and Colorado Springs. He had the distinction of commanding two USAF Weather Wings. First was the 1st Weather Wing at Hickam AFB, Hawaii, providing weather services to the Army and Air Forces for the entire Pacific region. His last Air Force assignment was the 5th Weather Wing at Langley
AFB, VA. His many successes in over 28 years of service demonstrated his love of our country and the USAF. After his retirement from active duty, Kelly continued working with the Air Force in several capacities, the last of which was Director, SAIC Operations, AF Weather Agency. He retired in 2011.
Kelly had the good fortune of finding “two good Texas women” to marry and share his life. Carol Albert was his first wife and they had four children during their 47 year marriage: Karen Elizabeth Heinzle, Katherine Klein Snook, Kristina Noel Klein, and Thomas Kelly Klein, Jr. Their children produced five grandchildren: Ryan Klein Brady, Logan Klein Brady, Noelle Mia Kim, Thomas Kelly Klein III, and Charley Ann Klein. Kelly is also survived by his brother, Robert Hunter Klein and sister, Margaret Klein Batesole.
Carol’s death from cancer in 2014 was devastating for Kelly. However, through their USAFA football tailgate group, Kelly met Judy Pilonetti who had been widowed for several years and who helped him through the grieving process. Their many friends were delighted with the relationship which healed both and they married on September 15, 2021 in a small private ceremony. Kelly will always be remembered as a great husband, father, and friend, with a wonderful sense of humor who could enliven any discussion. He loved people and they loved him.
His funeral will be at Shrine of Remembrance on Tuesday, January 17, 2023, at 9:30 am, with a visitation beginning at 8:30 am. His interment will be in the Pikes Peak National Veterans Cemetery at 12PM.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the American Red Cross or to the charity of your choice.