Whether you are a company looking to step up your security, or an individual who wants to take your safety to a new level, EDK has the training available. The newly opened EDK Training Center offers training courses onsite, and gun range options are available. The EDK Training Center had their grand opening on January 15th, Martin Luther King Day. The range is located at 1627 N. 175 East Road, Pawnee, across from the power plant. The range has gone through total renovation.
EDK owner, Eddie Kimble, owns the EDK Training Center with partner, Myron Hunter. EDK owns the training center and gun range business. “I started an LLC for the range. The people I train need a place to shoot,” Eddie said.
“Opportunity brought me to Pawnee,” Eddie added. “It made me feel good that Chief Harris, the Pawnee Chief of Police was so receptive.”
The consulting business- EDK came first. “I have been three and a half years with that,” Eddie said. “I started out being a firearms instructor with the USCCA, the United States Carry and Conceal Association.”
The Carry and Conceal classes have been popular, so much so that Eddie said in 2021 he was teaching a class a month in Chicago, Bourbonnais, and Springfield. He thinks part of the popularity came because of COVID. “COVID caused people to be concerned about being robbed, not so much of their money, but of their toiletries and food.”
Eddie is a transfer to the central Illinois area, and his story is a success story of a man on a mission. “My childhood was in the ghetto, on the West side of Chicago.”
Surrounded by gangs and drugs, Eddie wanted a better life. “I wanted to be different, so I went to college. I am the first one in my mom’s family to go to college. In 1997, I got my associate in business administration.”
After graduating, Eddie was working, but still trying to decide his path in life. While at a fast-food restaurant, he was approached by strangers that suggested he join the Armed Services. Later he would learn that these were recruiters, but he took their advice. “Four months later, I joined the U.S. Army. I joined for the pay, college, and to see the world.”
Serving two years in Hawaii at Schofield Army Base in Oahu, Eddie said while this sounds like a tropical paradise, at the time of his enlistment, “The natives didn’t like having us there.”
While serving in the army, Eddie was injured during PT. “I tore my hamstring, ACL, and MCL’s.”
These injuries later led to two knee replacements, and a shoulder replacement. Eddie’s initial dream was to become a police officer, and then enter the FBI. While he was able to pass all the other physical requirements because of his previous injuries, he couldn’t run. During his time in the service, he learned how to handle firearms, and when he was working as a manager at Chase Bank in 2008, he was approached to manage a security company. At the firm, they served as bodyguards at a facility that allowed Eddie to meet many celebrities over his work period.
When the company lost their military and security contracts, Eddie’s job changed, and that was when he applied for a job with the State of Illinois. Today Eddie works full time in a management capacity as a state employee. He runs his business during evening and weekend hours and with the assistance of his partner and other employees. With the state for the past ten years, his career brought him to the central Illinois area.
As a black man, Eddie said that living in the Springfield area is easier than in Chicago. “In Springfield, over the past ten years, I have only been profiled a couple of times,” however, he said it happened all the time in Chicago.
“I want to make sure my students understand both sides, that of the police, and the citizen. Being a black man, I know what its like to be discriminated against, and hopefully after taking training classes for my students, interactions can be more peaceful,” Eddie said.
As part of the décor at the training center Eddie has a new mural that will grace the outside of the building. The Mural will reflect Martin Luther King, and Abraham Lincoln shaking hands with Bible between them. The Bible will have sun rays flowing out showing God’s love and that through faith, everyone can work together.
Eddie received a BA in Inter-Disciplinary studies after the service, a degree that offered different topics that he said, “Allowed me to think outside of the box.”
Thinking outside of the box, Eddie found himself being sought after for advice from people when he worked at various jobs, and at his church Abundant Faith Christian Center, and from friends. Since he was consulting others on security measures, it made sense to become a consultant. The turning point was when 13 people from his church along with his wife Katherin took a Conceal and Carry class. That got Eddie to thinking everyone was trusting him to teach them, so he decided to become certified through the USCCA, the United States Carry and Conceal Association and offer the classes.
Besides the Conceal and Carry classes, they also offer Women’s Handgun courses, Youth Safety classes and First Aid. He also volunteers with IDNR teaching hunter safety classes to kids. Eddie is also an AR15 instructor. “I also help churches with security.”
Learning to know how to handle yourself in a dangerous situation is one of the benefits of taking one of EDK’s courses. “The police are the first responders, and it’s already over once the event has happened. I teach you what to do in the event as a civilian. It has come with the training I have received.”
While the gun range is open for individual use and training classes, Eddie said that the National Guard, security firms and police forces can also contact him if they are looking for a place to shoot. With five shooting bays, there is lots of room!
Firearm products will also be available. For hours and details, check out the EDK website EDK Training Center & Services- Home Page .EDK Defensive Consultants LLC | USCCA Training (usconcealedcarry.com). Myron will be onsite during day hours, and Eddie in the evenings. Myron is retired from CWLP, and his expertise was used extensively when remodeling the training center. RMD General contractors, Favor2, and TDI Concrete worked on the EDK Training Center renovation.
Eddie is a family man with five children in the Springfield area, and four grandchildren and at the time of this interview with grandbaby number five on the way! Eddie and his wife Katherin live in Chatham. He hopes that she can eventually join him at EDK Training Center.