Ft Stewart, Georgia, August 24, 2015, By PV2 Beverly Shepard – What motivates a Georgia State Defense Force (GSDF) Soldier to voluntarily serve 24 consecutive calendar days of duty? Dedication, perhaps? Not according to the GSDF Solider who put in the time.
“First and foremost, I do not consider it ‘dedication’ to go on these missions and participate in training,” said SSG Amber Kimble, Alpha Company, 4th Battalion, 5th Brigade, Non-Commissioned Officer In Charge (NCOIC), Initial Entry Training (IET) South NCOIC. “For me, it is an opportunity to challenge myself and most importantly, to serve.”
SSG Kimble recently served 24 consecutive days in three separate missions. In Operation Patriot Bandoleer, SSG Kimble joined a Georgia Army National Guard mission as a truck driver covering 1,627 miles through various states, including North Carolina, Tennessee, and Indiana.
SSG Kimble said she wanted to prove her worth as a GSDF Solider, capable of working with the GAARNG. “That was one of my goals. I wanted to represent the GSDF,” SSG Kimble said. “I represent an entire organization of people who are just as capable – who are both technically and tactically proficient.”
Since joining the GSDF in 2010, SSG Kimble has volunteered for 30 missions, with 94 State Active Duty mission days, and she has earned numerous honors.
“I appreciate SSG Amber Kimble’s service as a non-commissioned officer,” said 5th Brigade Commanding Officer LTC Robbie Chavis. “She constantly strives for excellence, bringing credit and improvement to everything she does. SSG Kimble is an invaluable asset to her unit, to the 5th Brigade, and to the entire Georgia State Defense Force.”
“What started out as a passion, when I joined, has turned into somewhat of an ‘addiction,’ ”SSG Kimble said of her GSDF service. “There’s not a day that goes by that I don’t think about or do something GSDF related—whether it’s training schedule ideas, professional military education, personal improvements, or collaboration with other Soldiers.”
SSG Kimble’s past also fuels her drive. “Growing up in an abusive household, I was constantly told that I would never amount to anything in life, and that I would live only to be a burden to people,” SSG Kimble said. “Instead of playing the underdog, I made it my personal goal in life to prove it all wrong—to make something of myself and to make the largest positive impact I could humanly make. What better way to accomplish all of that than serving in the military?”
SSG Kimble learned of the GSDF from the brochure, obtained at the booth installed during the Military Appreciation event in Columbus, GA. After taking a closer look at the GSDF, SSG Kimble was convinced that the GSDF offered her the versatility – to learn a variety of skills and participate in various missions – she desired. She joined the GSDF in 2010. Today, SSG Kimble is a proud member of Alpha Company, 4th Battalion, 5th Brigade. This was the first GSDF unit to fully integrate into a GAARNG unit – a testament to SSG Kimble and her fellow Soldiers.
“SSG Kimble leads by example, as someone who conducts both her personal and professional life based on the Army Values,” said 1SG Scruggs, 5th Brigade 1SG . “Since she is the NCOIC of the 5th Brigade Initial Entry Training (IET) program, SSG Kimble provides an example, early in the training process, of how we want soldiers to conduct themselves.”
For recent work with Operation Vigilant Guard and Operation Patriot Bandoleer, SSG Kimble received a Challenge Coin for her “amazing patriotism” to serve on both missions. It’s only one of several recognitions SSG Kimble has earned. These recognitions include two GSDF Commendation Medals, a GSDF Unit commander Citation, a GSDF Master Mission Badge, and a GSDF Basic Instructor Badge, along with two GAARNG commendations. During Basic Noncommissioned Officer Class (BNCOC) Class 14-01 last year, SSG Kimble earned the Honor Graduate Leadership Award.
The GSDF has played an important role in SSG Kimble’s personal life, as well. Through the GSDF, she met SGT Chris Treadwell, GSDF, Alpha Company, 4th Battalion, 5th Brigade, in 2011. They married in 2014.
“The GSDF has become like a family to me,” SSG Kimble said. “Not a single member of my family attended my wedding. Yet, members of the GSDF were there.”
As a civilian, SSG Kimble hauls cotton across the Southeast as a contracted truck driver for the United States Department of Agriculture—a seasonal position that typically lasts from September through early February. She is also a senior gardener at Callaway Gardens in Pine Mountain, Georgia.
In earning her bachelor’s degree in media communications, SSG Kimble attended two years of college in Peru, South America and another two years at Columbus Baptist College in Columbus, Georgia.