CSM Donnie Calvery entered the Army on July 31, 1973 becoming an aircraft armament repairman and volunteered for service in Task Force 160 10 years later.
His exceptional leadership skills and dedication to the special operations aviation mission allowed him to rise through the ranks serving 19 of his 30 year career in the 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment (Airborne), culminating as the regimental command sergeant major.
He was there for the unit’s baptism of fire in Operation Urgent Fury, the first of many combat operations as a Night Stalker, and was the epitome of the unit’s motto “Night Stalkers Don’t Quit.”
Of particular significance was his participation in the first combat airborne operation since Vietnam; the first jumper out the door, during Operation Just Cause.
He was instrumental in the development of programs for the selection and training of enlisted members volunteering to serve in the 160th SOAR (A).
His personal attention to the needs of families led to formation of family readiness groups to support the needs of Night Stalker families separated by the constant deployment of service members.
He is an exceptional Soldier whose outstanding accomplishments and selfless service contributed significantly to the success of the 160th SOAR (A) and the Army Aviation Branch.
His career embodies what Aviation Branch envisioned as the model for young enlisted aviator maintainers to emulate.
CSM Calvery retired in 2003 and continues serving as a force modernization analyst providing his experience, technical expertise and special operations forces knowledge to the future transformation of SOF aviation.