CARROLLTON, Va. - Airmen assigned to the 192nd Wing performed a socially distanced group run to show support for a former Airman who is battling cancer on Sept. 13, 2020.
Retired Staff Sgt. Nicole Gicker, formerly a 192nd Intelligence Squadron intelligence operations specialist, was an avid runner and was well known for helping her fellow Airmen improve their physical fitness.
“I wanted to show spiritual and motivational support for Staff Sgt. Gicker because she always helped me with my PT [physical training], and it was always very meaningful to me," said Staff Sgt. Nancy Fuller, 192nd Intelligence Squadron geospatial analyst. “I’m very excited to be here for her.”
A total of 37 Airmen arrived in Gicker’s neighborhood in Carrollton drawing the attention of the residents and a local off-duty police officer residing nearby. For safety reasons, and in show of support for Gicker, the police officer led the formation in his patrol car.
“We just want to show our love from the 192nd,” said Chief Master Sgt. Michelle Conaway, 192nd Intelligence Squadron superintendent. “Although she is no longer an active member of the 192nd, she is always going to be a member in our hearts.”
The group tribute run was a surprise to Gicker, and she was emotionally moved by the display. The Airmen sang cadence with lyrics in support and honor of her which echoed from the houses and caused the neighborhood dogs to alarm. As they came around the bend, Gicker watched with her family from the front porch of the house. The Airmen passed by and turned around to amass in the front yard where they continued to sing cadence and deliver words of support. Gicker was also presented with tokens of appreciation for her service by several members.
Editor’s note Oct. 22. 2020: Staff Sgt. Amber Nicole Gicker passed away on Oct. 10, 2020, at her home in Carrollton, Virginia. She battled cancer for more than a year and has been laid to rest with family in Texas. Gicker served over eight years in the Air Force before joining the Virginia Air National Guard in 2017. She is survived by her husband, their son, 10 brothers and sisters, numerous nieces and nephews, as well as several great nieces and nephews.
“Nicole was an incredible Airman and true wingman,” said Chief Master Sgt. Michelle Conaway, 192nd Intelligence Squadron superintendent. “She embodied our Air Force core values of Integrity, Service Before Self and Excellence in all we do. Although Nicole can no longer be with us today, her legacy will live on in our hearts forever, and she will always be a member of the Virginia Air National Guard family.”