From Recruiting Command to the White House
July 3, 2012
COLUMBIA, S.C. -- Staff Sgt. Kyle Busby has already accomplished far more than he ever imagined eight years ago while working at an ice cream shop and a home reconstruction business in his hometown of Clinton, Ill. And now, a small inspired act will soon take him to the White House and lead him on the journey of a lifetime.
In August Busby starts a three-year tour with the White House Medical Unit (WHMU), which provides comprehensive medical care to the president, vice president and their immediate families.
"This will be an outstanding opportunity, serving back in the medical field, working with the most prestigious doctors in the country," said Busby. "I have a passion to help people and there is no better field for me than the medical profession."
An Army medic, Busby wanted a change after three years of recruiting duty at Columbia's Dentsville Station, and he set the wheels in motion that led him down the path he was meant to take.
Although his aspirations initially lead him to pursue the Criminal Investigation Command (CID), he said God was in charge and had other plans. Once he received the top secret security clearance required by the CID, he not so patiently waited for a CID school date.
One afternoon, Busby received a call from Human Resources Command and was asked if he was interested in White House duty -- a position for which he would not have even been considered without the top secret clearance.
After an enthusiastic discussion with his wife, Busby decided to pursue this intriguing opportunity. One of only seven NCOs selected for interviews from the 250 whose records were reviewed, Busby traveled to Washington, D.C., in February for an interview.
Busby was interviewed seven times in two days; he was notified of his selection an hour after his last interview.
"My family is very proud of me and extremely excited about the new career," said Busby. "My oldest daughter (Briana) thought it was the coolest thing when I got a letter from the White House stating that I was selected for the position."
He and his wife, Alicia, have two other children: Gracelynn, 4, and Kaleb, 2. He said his wife is the backbone of the family.
"She stands behind me in everything that I do and always motivates, encourages and inspires me," said Busby.
He was also inspired by his father who served in the Army as a military policeman, and had a passion to follow in his footsteps. "I wanted to make something of myself," said Busby. "I have always had a calling to do something more and have taken that throughout my entire career."
In 2004 he left Clinton for Basic Combat Training (BCT) at Fort Leonard Wood, Mo. After Advanced Individual Training he was assigned to Fort Stewart, Ga., and three months later he deployed to Iraq.
"I drove tanks, commanded tanks, gunned tanks, and served as the combat medic for my 15 fellow tanking brothers."
He deployed again in 2007 serving as a squad leader with responsibility for all medical supply ordering, maintaining, inspecting and distributing for his battalion. It was during this last deployment that he volunteered for recruiting duty.
"I needed to share my Army story with others to inspire them," said Busby. "I felt as though I have served as a medic and done my job well."
Now having three years as a recruiter, Busby said he feels he has served his purpose: "to inspire many Future Soldiers."
As his station's Future Soldier leader, he has received numerous notes of appreciation from Soldiers who have shipped to BCT about how his training program has helped them tremendously.
"He is excellent at constructing action plans that replicate the rigors of BCT in order to provide realistic training," said Capt. Karen Roxberry, Columbia Company commander. "I adapted our company Future Soldier program from his plan.
"For the past two years, I have observed Busby do some amazing things," said Roxberry. "His training style demonstrates the passion that he has for the Army and his extensive knowledge as a combat medic."
Busby said he's proud of the impact he's had on Future Soldiers.
"The ability to take a young kid that has no parental guidance or role models out of a lifestyle that they believe is 'normal' and introducing them to the Army lifestyle where they can really appreciate how the Army takes care of its own," Busby said.
He's not only affected Future Soldiers, but also hundreds of educators. Instrumental in the success of the 2011 Military Career Pathways 101, Busby was one of the primary presenters at Moncrief Hospital during a tour of Fort Jackson, S.C. The purpose of the tour was to highlight military careers. Since health sciences are among the most popular careers, he was able to showcase the many health related careers the military offers.
"He was clearly a subject matter expert, his presentation was impressive and was the most popular session of the day," said Martha Daniels, battalion education services specialist.
A humble person, Busby takes on every challenge with open arms. He is excited about this opportunity and said he will take the experiences of recruiting duty with him on all of his future assignments.
"I never stop trying to learn more and achieve more."
Just 32 credits from finishing his bachelor's degree in health sciences, he said his long term goal is to attend the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences and become a specialized doctor.
The WHMU comprises the White House physician, who is often selected personally by the president; five active-duty military physicians, nurses, and physician assistants; three medics; administrators and one information technology manager. The medical unit protects the chief executive by guarding his day-to-day health or even performing emergency surgery. The unit is part of the White House Military Office and is also responsible for emergency care for the more than 1 million tourists, guests and international dignitaries who visit the White House each year.