Amber Marie French, 36, passed away peacefully at her home in Kelso (Lexington) on July 23rd, 2022.
She suffered from Transverse Myelitis, a rare auto immune disease.
Amber was born to loving parents James L. French Jr & Melissa A. Thomas on June 20th, 1986 at
Ellsworth AFB, Rapid City, South Dakota. She and her parents moved to Castle Rock in February of 88’ to
be close to family.
Amber attended Toutle Lake School, kindergarten through the second grade until she moved to Kalama
in 1994. She attended Kalama Public School until she graduated in 2004. She went on to attend LCC
and play softball until her health took a turn, causing her to need to focus on her health.
Amber loved sports and games of any type, and was extremely competitive. She excelled in softball and
soccer, and both were her passion. At 13 years of age she was selected for the Olympic Development
Soccer Team. Due to schedule conflicts and high school commitments she decided to focus on high
school sports, specifically softball. She played soccer for KHS and developed quite the reputation for
“taking a player out” each game. As a freshman in 2001 she was selected for the varsity softball team,
who went on to win the State Championship. She was voted MVP, best defensive and offensive player
during her four years of HS softball. Amber joined a tournament softball team at the age of 12, and
went on to play for the Northwest Outlaws through the summer of 2004. She and her mom traveled
throughout Washington, Oregon, California and Canada. Amber’s mom will treasure the wonderful
mother-daughter memories made from each of those trips. Even today, you will find her softball bag in
the trunk of her car. She was always ready for an impromptu softball game.
Amber had her first date with the love of her life, Andrew Keith Nunes, on November 12th , 2005. It was
clear from the start they were destined to be together, and married October 23rd , 2009.
Amber’s parents gave her the travel bug at an early age, and she went on her first cruise at the age of
13. She enjoyed multiple cruises and all-inclusive resorts with her husband, family and friends. She was
one lucky girl to have visited nearly all the common Caribbean Islands and several cities in Mexico. Two
weeks prior to her passing she was planning another cruise, hopeful she would rebound like she had
done so many times before. One of her favorite destinations was the RIU Palace Peninsula in Cancun.
That resort will forever be Amber’s special place and her family plan to visit as often as possible in her
Amber became an EMT/CNA in 2012, and joined Cowlitz 2 Fire & Rescue later that year as a volunteer.
She finally felt she had found her true calling and loved being an EMT/Firefighter. She participated and
organized several Santa Runs and STP aid stations in Lexington. She also volunteered for Castle Rock
Fire District 6 and for a short time worked as an intern. In 2014, Amber received the EMS Responder of
the Year for Cowlitz 2 Fire & Rescue. She had such a passion for EMS and fire-fighting, that she hoped
her health would improve and allow her to return.
Amber loved the outdoors and camping, specifically Lake Billy Chinook in Central Oregon. She loved
hiking, riding quads and participating in Spartan Races with her dad and family. Like her mother, she
loved animals more than most humans. Due to health she was not able to work, so she took on
educating herself on how to save money. She clipped coupons and was so frugal at times, that her
family joked that she would leave a store and would have made money. She loved the food network
and became an amazing cook. She and her husband loved traveling to new places and trying the local
cuisine. She was very well known on Yelp and was definitely a foodie.
Amber was well known for her infamous facial expressions and sense of humor. She could make anyone
laugh, had no filter, and more often than not was politically incorrect. Her laugh was infectious and her
smile could light up a room. If love could have saved her, she would have lived forever.
Preceded in death: Grandparents, James & Ollie Rodriguez, Dorothy French and Marie Havelka; Grandfather Charles J Smedley; Uncles Daryl Hinkle and Ross McIntire; Aunt Vicki Morain.
She is survived by her husband, Andrew Keith Nunes; Parents Melissa & Alan Thomas and James L. French Jr; James French Sr.; Gerald A Thomas; Her special Aunt Shelley Hinkle; Aunt Sally McIntire; Brother James L. French III; A step-sister Kate Thomas; a nephew and numerous cousins; several Aunts and Uncles in Ohio.