Dawn here. I can’t tell you how many people are shocked and amazed that we own a gun store now and that “this is YOUR thing, Dawn.” Well, guess what? I’m shocked and amazed, too! Haha. Some of you know my story. Long story short, I was terrified of guns until April 2011. That month was a turning point for me, in preparation for my second deployment overseas. I learned to really respect a firearm and that I’m not a bad shot when I get out of my own head. From there, my enjoyment of the shooting sports has grown.
It really started off with a self-defense mindset. I was deploying and had to carry a firearm in case I found myself in a situation warranting self-defense greater than fighting for my life with whatever hand to hand combat skills I had learned (which, to be honest, wasn’t as much as you’d think). After the trip to the range in April 2011, with my hubby and some family members, I was smitten with target shooting AND was really ready to take the role of protector seriously. Not just to protect myself, but to protect my fellow Airmen and Soldiers that I was deploying with, should I need to.
Without saying too much, I was thankful I took the steps to prepare myself. I never had to discharge my weapon while overseas, but there was one night I will never forget. Our entire base was under attack and many of us were trapped in the chow hall with local nationals. Rule #1 – trust no one, right?! Well, we were all very much on edge, to say the least. You start looking around and evaluating everyone you might have to fight for your life with or protect. Another Airmen and I took point for our section of the chow hall. We didn’t make it obvious, we didn’t “stand guard”, but we were ready. I was confident in our abilities to use our firearms from where we were, should we have needed to.
After that deployment, I was able to go to the shooting range and just plink brass. This is where I fell in love with target shooting. We had a range 7 minutes from our house, which just made it way too easy… I took NRA sanctioned classes there to learn more about handguns and safe shooting. The hubby was VERY excited about my new hobby! My love for the shooting sports has exponentially grown over the years…