ANG Honor Guard Member of the Year for 2012

  • Published
  • By Rebecca Metzger, Capt. IN ANG
  • 122nd Fighter Wing
122nd Fighter Wing Knowledge Operations Manager and Honor Guard member Staff Sgt. Carrie M. Kline was one of six Air National Guard Airmen recognized during the 2012 ANG Outstanding Airmen of the Year awards ceremony at the Air National Guard Readiness Center, Joint Base Andrews, Md., Aug. 22, 2012.
Kline, a traditional guardsman, farmer and stay-at-home mom to two boys, was recognized as the Honor Guard Member of the Year for 2012. Every year ANG units from the 54 states and territories submit their top performing airmen from more than 92,000 enlisted Airmen. This award recognizes these outstanding enlisted personnel for superior leadership, job performance, community involvement and personal achievements.
"Staff Sgt. Kline is a perfect example of the quality Airmen that serve at the 122nd Fighter Wing and I'm extremely proud of her and her accomplishments," said Col. David L. Augustine, 122nd Fighter Wing Commander. "She has a service-dedicated spirit. Even though she is incredibly busy, she somehow manages to raise her hand for practically every honor guard assignment."
In her civilian life Kline assists her family in farming over 700 acres and tends to 200 head of cattle. "My boys [ages two and four] go with me everywhere," said Kline. "We do chores twice a day, every day that consists of everything from feeding the cattle, bedding them, hauling manure and checking for new calves out in the pasture." In her spare time, Kline enjoys running and participates in several races throughout the year. "Right now I'm looking forward to hopefully participating in the 10K for our upcoming air show," said Kline. "I'm also signed up for the half marathon for the Fort4Fitness."
Despite her busy home-life, Kline still finds time to dedicate much of her time to the honor guard. "I was kind of in shock when I was told that I was selected as one of the top six," said Kline. "I know I volunteer a lot, but I'm always trying to think of what I can do to improve, and what else I can do to help out. I feel so privileged to have been selected and to be able to experience this."
The six award recipients spent a week in our nation's capital where they were treated with the utmost respect. "I had no idea what to expect," said Kline. "I knew it was a big deal, but I didn't realize how big."
The Airmen were recognized at various events throughout the week, and received awards from leaders including Lt. Gen. Wyatt, Director of the Air National Guard. "To tell you the truth, it was nerve-racking receiving the award from Lt. Gen. Wyatt, but protocol was always there to help us out," said Kline.
As Kline says, it is a privilege to be selected as one of the top six. It takes hard work, dedication and a drive to go above and beyond. Kline's recommendations to Airmen striving to end up in her shoes include volunteering and passion. "Volunteer for something," said Kline. "Get yourself out there and volunteer for things at your base and the community. Have passion. Like for me, I absolutely love the honor guard. It's been eight years, and I still have the passion for it. My heart still pounds before every event, and I strive to do my best because I have the passion."