NFL Salute to Service |


Salute to Service Award


Kim Klawiter (Director of Security)

Kim Klawiter is one of several Minnesota Vikings staff members who is a veteran. He enjoys seeing the support for current soldiers and veterans that occurs during annual Salute to Service games and through other initiatives like the Veterans Voyage, which is an exclusive trip to Washington, D.C., for a group of former service members and guests. The former Army Master Sergeant is in his 15th season with the Vikings, an organization he's followed since its inception in 1961 when he was growing up in White Bear Lake.

During his time in the Army, the young 20-year old was assigned to Cu Chi, Vietnam, an area north-west of Saigon known for a tunnel system that posed hidden hazards. He led men through jungles where trees were about 5 meters apart. Klawiter was awarded a Bronze Star medal for heroism. An Army letter announcing the award says: "Sergeant Klawiter, disregarding his own safety, raced forward to the foremost position and found that several men had been wounded. Seeing one of the men exposed, Sergeant Klawiter crawled forward until he reached the wounded man. Although under intense fire, Sergeant Klawiter carried his injured comrade back to a safe area and got medical treatment for him. His valorous actions were responsible for saving a man's life.". In addition to the Bronze Star, Klawiter received multiple other awards that included a Purple Heart, an Army commendation medal and Vietnam campaign and service medals to name a few. Klawiter returned home without much time to adjust. "I went from foxhole, to Los Angeles, to two weeks later, I'm at the University of Minnesota attending class."

Klawiter joined the Minnesota Vikings staff as the Director of Security in 2004 after serving 24 years with the Minnesota State Patrol and retiring as a Lieutenant. He is an active Leader of the Law Enforcement Memorial Association, which is dedicated to assisting the families and home agencies of those law enforcement officers who have died in the line of duty. However, his commitment to the military men, women, and families of our country has never wavered. He often personally assists and facilitates reenlistment ceremonies and goes out of his way to meet with military guests when hosted by the team. He has been an ardent supporter of the Minnesotans' Military Appreciation Fund, a statewide fundraising initiative that shows appreciation and respect to efforts of military members by providing cash grants to all Minnesota service members who have served in combat zones since September 2001, and to the families of fallen service members. Kim is beloved by players, coaches, staff, and the community as a whole. We will never be able to thank him enough for his sacrifice and dedication.