Army Lieutenant Amber English Breaks Olympic Record To Win Gold In Women’s Skeet Shooting

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On Monday, First Lieutenant Amber English became the first member of the United States Military to win an Olympic Gold Medal when she took home the top honor in the women’s skeet shooting competition.

She is a logistics officer and a member of the U.S. Army’s Marksmanship Unit. She defeated the defending champion, Diana Bacosi of Italy, by just one target.

According to the Army Times, English just barely missed qualifying for the 2012 and 2016 Olympics.

After beating Olympic legend and arguably the greatest female shotgunner of all time Kim Rhode at the most recent Olympic Team Trials event, English stepped in to fill Rhode’s big shoes in tremendous fashion by setting a new Olympic record.

She broke 56 of a possible 60 targets.

English was already an accomplished shotgun shooter before she joined the Army.

She began recreationally shooting at age 6, and she comes from a family of good shots. Both her dad and her uncle were members of the U.S. National Shotgun Team and spent time honing their skills at the Olympic training center. Both her mom and her aunt were members of the University of Kentucky shooting team, which is the nation’s premier collegiate rifle program.

Amber started shooting competitively in 2006.  By 2013 she had received an invite to become a full time resident at the U.S. Olympic training center in Colorado Springs.

According to Team USA, she joined the Army in 2017 after the death of her father and failing to qualify for the 2016 Olympics.

She is a member of the Army World Class Athlete Program as well, a special military unit comprised of athletes that balance their military service with training to represent the U.S. as a member of the Olympic team.

She says without joining the Army, her shooting career never would have taken off to the heights that it is at now.

“That was a huge hurdle and I took the alternate spot last time.

I knew I had to completely change everything I was doing in my life – I joined the Army, moved  from Colorado down to Fort Benning Georgia and surrounded myself with a seriously winning atmosphere, so it paid off.

All I could control was just my own shooting and my own emotions. I trained hard and was fortunate to be able to put it together at the right time.

I’m very, very glad. This has been a long time coming.”

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