Bookmark and Share

John M. Markle


Distinguished Flying Cross

See more recipients of this award

Awarded for actions during the Operation Allied Force

The President of the United States of America, authorized by Act of Congress, July 2, 1926, takes pleasure in presenting the Distinguished Flying Cross with Combat "V" to Major John M. Markle, United States Air Force, for heroism while participating in aerial flight as an F-117A Stealth Fighter Pilot, over the Former Federal Republic of Yugoslavia on 22 April 1999. On that date, as an integral member of a multi-ship air strike, Major Markle was handpicked to destroy a key communications facility. Until that date, Major Markle's target, located in the heart of downtown Belgrade, was the most politically sensitive target of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization Operation ALLIED FORCE and possessed very stringent collateral damage restrictions. Within one mile of the target stood many extremely sensitive buildings including the embassies of Belgium, Iran, Czech Republic, and Turkey. In addition, the target was surrounded by two churches, the Yugoslav Federal Assembly Building, a major sports complex, a densely populated business district, and numerous civilian apartment buildings. Despite anti-aircraft artillery fire during his ingress to the target, Major Markle delivered two precision-guided weapons and totally destroyed his target with the accuracy essential for mission success. He then successfully egressed the target area despite facing heavy anti-aircraft artillery fire. Major Markle's superb performance while destroying this strategically important target, under intense pressure from formidable enemy surface-to-air-missile activity, contributed directly to the overwhelming success of Operation ALLIED FORCE. The outstanding heroism and selfless devotion to duty displayed by Major Markle reflect great credit upon himself and the United States Air Force.

General Orders: Citation Courtesy of the Distinguished Flying Cross Society -

Action Date: April 22, 1999

Service: Air Force

Rank: Major