Safety Plan

competitive marksmanshipI cannot stress thoroughly enough the importance of personal safety. Complacency gets us into trouble every time we let our guard get sloppy. No, we do not need to place ourselves on high alert at all times, but a well thought out plan, one which we verbalize to our family members and then re-enact on a few “fire drill” type dry runs could save our lives. I recently heard a hair raising tale driving this point home. The man turned in early, while the wife watched t.v. in the sun room. Kids played in their rooms. In the middle of the night, the break in occurred; the bad guy watched the house for hours thinking only the woman lived there. The intent of the bad guy, based on several factors including a prior record, was raping, robbing and murdering. The bad guy began his efforts, BUT, the home owners not only had a plan, they enacted it. The ensuing brawl, call to the police, use of force and ultimate need to engage in deadly force all took place in a text book style scenario as the police force made their way to the home. Listening to the story, I felt my own pulse racing and my breath beginning to hyperventilate. I congratulated the story teller on his choice of actions, that he did not hesitate to protect himself, his family or his “castle”. He, in turn, clearly relived the event as he spoke, his face reddening, his voice catching, his own breath hyperventilating. I then told him my own background as an officer, trainer and competitive shooter. I not only did my best to reaffirm his actions, but to tell him this is exactly what we train for. He not only possessed his concealed handgun license, but he also discussed with his wife what they would do in the event of a break in. This man also insisted his spouse learn the basics of the handgun which lay at the ready in their bedroom, how to load the magazine, rack the slide, use the weapon. I cannot stress enough, the advantage we give ourselves with thinking about a plan, talking about it, going through the motions. These actions saved this man and his entire family’s life. It will take a long time for the whole family to get over the event. But, the good guy rules; the good guy eats supper with his family every night. Goal satisfied. Period. It reminds me to check doors and window and locks before leaving my home and before going to bed at night. Where is your handgun? It is functioning and at your ready? I hope so.

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"I worked as a Federal Law Enforcement Officer for over 14 years, in a firearms carrying capacity. First assigned to LAX (1994), then to the Los Angeles/ Long Beach Seaport (1997-2007), I took an early retirement from my final duty station of El Paso, TX (2007-2008). Never having handled firearms prior to this job, I give full credit for my initial shooting lessons and safe firearms handling skills to the government. As I began to compete, I gleaned tips and coaching lessons from the best law enforcement instructors across the nation, turning myself into one of the best, too. I was a firearms instructor in Los Angeles and a national level competitor on a formally sponsored team from 1999 through 2003, being sent all over the nation for pistol match competitions. As a result of this gift of an experience, I went on to set five national records in the law enforcement shooting sports. Check in regularly to read about those and other adventures and misadventures!"
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