Fort Hood Couple Visits 6 Continents, All U.S. National Parks

Channel 6 Military Reporter Jillian Angeline reports.

FORT HOOD - A Fort Hood couple is taking on the world in and out of the Army uniform.

This adventurous duo has traveled six continents and visited every U.S. National Park.

The Gombers recently finished hiking to the top of Mount Kilimanjaro in Africa.

Saguaro National Park, Kenai Fjords National Park, Sequoia National Park, Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, Death Valley National Park – the Gomber’s have seen every U.S. National Park and they keep exploring together.


“Really the goal was to see the United States and do it with my favorite person in the world,”

John and Kendall Gomber met as cadets at West Point Military Academy, but their love did not blossom until after graduation. They visited their first national park in January 2012 and the memories followed from there.

“When John talked about going inside a glacier and seeing blue ice, if you ask John his favorite color, he says blue ice,” Kendall said. “The excitement on John’s face when he’s on a glacier and gets to see blue ice is pretty special.”

The Gombers recently relied on their military fitness to climb to the peak of Mount Kilimanjaro in Africa. The peak is more than 19,000 feet.

“The idea that you’re at the ceiling of Africa,” s “They always call it the roof of Africa. And that was pretty spectacular-to get to climb to the top and realize there’s not another mountain or point on the earth this tall until you get to the Himalayas.”

John plans the most of the treks and has advice for a well-organized trip.

“Reading a lot-trying to get as much information as you can so you don’t find yourself high and dry either,” he said. “on the road or at the National Park, making the most of each and every time we get out there.

The military couple is no stranger to a long-distance relationship. Captain Kendall Gomber is an assistant operations officer with the 504th Military Intelligence Brigade. She will deploy to the Middle East this month.  Captain John Gomber, an apache pilot with the 1st Air Cav Brigade is deploying to Europe next month. The couple is making their time together count.

They said their goal is not to travel alone and see stuff by themselves – do it together.

“We’ve done trips over two-day weekends, fly in Saturday, fly out Sunday,”

Even with all the traveling, the Gombers do find themselves on journeys around the Fort Hood community.

“One of our favorite things has been trail riding,” said. “It’s something I used to do a lot growing up and it’s a relaxing experience for me but John rode his first horse since we moved to Texas and has definitely jumped on board.”

With six continents, down and one to go, the Gombers are hoping to add Antarctica to their adventures soon. 

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