LTC Kenneth W. Stauss is inducted into the Ranger Hall of Fame for his outstanding service to the United States Army and his demonstrated commitment to Ranger operations. He began his service in 1973 when he was commissioned as an Infantry officer upon graduation from the ROTC Program at the University of Arkansas.
LTC Stauss' assignments have included: Rifle Platoon Leader and Scout Platoon Leader for the 1st Battalion, 8th Infantry Regiment, 4th Infantry Division (Mech) at Fort Carson, Colorado; Weapons Platoon Leader, S-5, and Assistant S-3 for the 2nd Battalion, 75th Infantry (Ranger) and Commander of Company B, 2nd Battalion, 39th Infantry Regiment, Fort Lewis, Washington; Assistant Professor of Military Science at Michigan Tech University; Plans Officer, United States Army Garrison, Fort Campbell, Kentucky; Assistant G-3 Plans Officer, 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault), Battalion S-3 and Executive Officer, 3rd Battalion, 187th Airborne Regimental Combat Team, Fort Campbell, Kentucky; Assistant S-3, S-5, and Regimental Executive Officer, 75th Ranger Regiment, Fort Benning, Georgia; Battalion Commander, 3rd Battalion, 22nd Infantry Regiment, Schofield Barracks, Hawaii; and Battalion Commander, 1st Battalion, 75th Ranger Regiment, Hunter Army Airfield, Georgia.
LTC Stauss is a graduate of the Infantry Officer Basic and Advance Courses, and the Command and General Staff College at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas.
His awards and decorations include the Legion of Merit, Bronze Star Medal, Meritorious Service Medal with Oak Leaf Cluster, the Army Commendation Medal, the Army Achievement Medal with Oak Leaf Cluster, the National Defense Service Medal with Star, the Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal, the Army Service Ribbon, Combat Infantryman Badge, the Master Parachutist Badge, the Pathfinder Badge, Air Assault Badge, and Ranger Tab.
LTC Stauss was the 75th Ranger Regimental Executive Officer during Operation Just Cause. As the Regimental Executive Officer his responsibilities included deploying and operating the Regimental TOC to provide command and control for two simultaneous combat parachute assault airfield seizure operations. He was instrumental in coordinating relief in place efforts with the 82nd Airborne Division, and the 7th Infantry Division (Light) forces that followed Rangers into the theater of operations. Throughout the deployment he led the Regimental staff in developing fragmentary orders for approximately 15 follow-on Ranger operations. As the 1st Ranger Battalion Commander, LTC Stauss deployed the Battalion to Kuwait as part of Operation Iris Gold - an emergency deployment operation designed to demonstrate U.S. resolve and commitment to the region, our allies and Iraqi forces in the wake of the Persian Gulf War. As part of this Operation, the Battalion and elements of the Regimental Headquarters conducted a strategic deployment and parachuted into Ali Al Salem Airfield, conducted an extensive overland movement and culminated with a battalion live fire exercise. The deployment was a broad success, accomplished all goals, and set the tone for Iris Gold as an annual exercise in the Central Command area of responsibility. During his tenure in command he was a strong force in initiating a number of construction projects which serve Rangers today. These include covered rigging facilities, a new motor pool, and a shoot house and Ranger demolition area. He is buried at the National Cemetery at Fort Smith Arkansas - very near the final resting place of William O. Darby. Lieutenant Colonel Stauss' selfless service and leadership remains a model for today's Rangers. It is appropriate that we recognize this great American for his service to the nation and the 75th Ranger Regiment.
Ken Stauss was a native of Belton, Missouri and is survived by his wife, Catherine Stauss Smith, and their children Erik and Megan. He is buried at Fort Smith, Arkansas.