LtCol Kurt Schiller was born in Kirkwood, Missouri and graduated from high school in Kettering, Ohio. He enlisted in the United States Marine Corps where he served as a Military Police Officer from 1988-1992, and participated in Operations Desert Shield and Desert Storm. Following his enlisted service he attended Wright State University in Dayton, Ohio and was commissioned a Second Lieutenant in January 1996. Upon graduation from The Basic School in October 1996, he reported to Naval Air Station Pensacola, Florida for initial flight training. Lieutenant Colonel Schiller was designated a Naval Aviator in September 1998 and reported to HMT-204 for initial training in the CH-46E.
In January 1999, he reported to HMM-263 where he served with the "Thunder Chickens" until June 2003. During his time with the squadron, LtCol Schiller deployed twice with the 24th MEU participating in operations in Kosovo, Operation Enduring and Iraqi Freedom. He held differing billets ranging from AIMD and Airframes OIC, to squadron WTI during his time with the squadron. In June 2003, LtCol Schiller reported to MAWTS-1 where he was assigned to the Department of Safety Standardization and NATOPS. While at MAWTS-1, he was the CH-46E NATOPS Instructor and went on to be a major evolution coordinator for several WTI classes as well as the overall squadron coordinator for Desert Talon 2-06.
In July 2006, LtCol Schiller reported to Marine Corps Command and Staff College where he earned a Masters of Military Studies. After graduating from Command and Staff, he attended TACP training at EWTGLANT and was designated a Forward Air Controller. Reporting to the 6th Marine Regiment, he served as the Air Watch Officer deploying in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom. Upon return to CONUS in 2008 he assumed the duties as the Regiment's Air Officer and Assistant Operations Officer. In August 2008, LtCol Schiller reported to VMMT-204 for transition training to the MV-22B. Upon completion of training January 2009, LtCol Schiller reported to VMM-365 where he served as the Assistant Operations Officer until being assigned Operations Officer in June 2009. He stayed with the Blue Knights through its transition to the MV-22B and for its first deployment supporting Operation Enduring Freedom. In April, 2011 LtCol Schiller reported to HQMC where he served as ASM-31, Rotary Wing Aviation Manpower Analyst.
After departing HQMC in December 2011, LtCol Schiller reported to MAG-16 where he served as the MAG Manpower Manager. LtCol Schiller assumed command of VMM-165 in February 2013 and deployed with the squadron to Afghanistan in July 2013. After relinquishing command of VMM-165, LtCol Schiller reported to the Marine Corps War College earning a Masters of Strategic Studies. In July 2015, he reported to the Joint Staff, J-7, Deployable Training Division (DTD) where he served as an Observer/Trainer supporting the Chairman’s Exercise Program. LtCol Schiller left the Joint Staff and reported to HQMC AVN in 2017 where he served as the Deputy Branch Head, Aviation Manpower and Support. He currently serves as the Director of Expeditionary Energy at Quantico, Virginia.
LtCol Schiller has logged over 2700 total mishap-free flight hours. His personal decorations include the Defense Meritorious Service Medal, the Meritorious Service Medal, Air Medal with 8 strike flights, the Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal and the Combat Action Ribbon.