Raised in a loving Christian home, Kimberly and her youngest brother, Oliver (O.J.), appeared to have the perfect childhood from the outside looking in. However, things were far from perfect.
Throughout her childhood, Kimberly spent many restless nights in her room, dreading phone calls and stories of her brother Oliver’s unpredictable, abnormal, and intense behavior. Oliver was a survivor of a school bus accident in grade school. The accident caused him to have a Traumatic Brain Injury, and as a result, he would suffer with mental illness such as bi-polar schizonphrenia.
While their parents covered Oliver in constant prayer, throughout his life, he was battered by a mental illness that would eventually lead to decades of erratic behavior, suicidal attempts, and mood swings that would eventually lead him to prison. It was a long journey of angst for the entire family. In her youth, Kimberly was left emotionally drained, anxious, and spiritually lost wondering why it seemed that God was not answering her parents’ prayers.
While these stories are not uncommon, Kimberly recognizes that they are often kept in the dark and never told.
Today, as a minister, recording artist, and a mental health advocate, her goal is to help bring the conversation about mental health to the forefront in the church and community; sharing facts and providing insight rooted in scripture.
“Sometimes in our faith, mental illnesses are demonized, but we as a people need to break the stigmas surrounding mental health. Mental Illness is not a look; you can't look at someone and tell they are struggling mentally. It's important that you know yourself and your triggers."
In 2019, Kimberly started The Love Again Initiative. She uses her platform as recording artist to bring awareness about mental wellness. She hosts several events throughout the year in hopes to inform and educate people on the importance of mental health. She is currently in the process of being certified in Mental Health First Aid.
Kimberly serves the Body of Christ alongside her husband, Pastor Matthew Gunn at Hosanna Church in Savannah, Ga. They have been married for more than 14 years.