Maj. Nathan Kline, World War II veteran and Allentown native, dies at 95

 

Air Force Major Nathan Kline died of heart failure Monday. After serving more than 40 years in the Air Force, he served his community until the end.

The 95-year-old Allentown native was set to host an event Tuesday. Friends say Kline loved service above all else.

Inside an Allentown Air Force Recruitment Center there's one constant in a wall of pictures: Major Kline with new recruits.

"This was all this year," said Master Sergeant Thomas Riley.

Riley says Kline gave the oath of enlistment to 120 people in the past five years and became a father figure to him.

"I can talk about the World War II era and not be taken seriously. He can talk to a crowd and people are keen in. He's the book of truth when it came to World War II era," Riley said.

Through the years we found out just how much the Allentown native loved talking about his memories of war.

"I'm in the nose and I could see the gunners shooting at me," he described during one of his countless interviews.

As a bombardier and navigator, Kline flew 65 missions during World War II. Shot down twice in the same week, he's received numerous medals. This includes the Distinguished Fly Cross and the Legion of Honor, France's highest military award. The topping of his life, Kline has said.

"All the medals in the world and everything he had. Children just lit him up," said Martie Haller.

She is the Director of Marketing for Country Meadows, Kline's home for the past three years.

Kline was a leader in veterans affairs, at times serving on more than 10 boards at time. Haller said that continued until the end.

"I can't think of a better historian or advocate for our younger generation to learn from than Major Nathan Kline," she said.

On the 70th anniversary of D-Day Major Kline told us the memories are as clear as the day they were made.

"He has lived his life every day to ensure the implementing of programs to take care of veterans locally. He was the military liaison for Allentown," Riley said.

He is survived by two children, three grandchildren and two great grandkids. His funeral is set for Friday at 11:30 at Bachman, Kulik & Reinsmith Funeral Home.