I grew up with guns in the house. I had my first .22 when I was 8 years old, but we didn’t shoot a whole lot. My father was a Marine Officer and he understood the importance of firearm ownership but he wasn’t a gun guy. He didn’t have any tactical rifles or pistols, not that he was against them but he just didn’t have any. He actually thought you needed a special license to own them and he had no intentions of going through all of the hassle to get them. I guess that came from being in the military, as he moved around a lot and even spent some time stationed out at Camp Pendleton, California. Obviously being in Virginia, the home of the NRA, tactical rifles and pistols were just as easy to own as a shotgun.
When I turned 18 I bought my first real rifle, a Stevens model 200 30-06. I had some friends and family that were hunters and had always heard about how powerful the all mighty 30-06 was. I shot it a couple times and was happy to own it but it was what it was, a deer rifle. For Christmas the next year my mother asked me what I wanted, I was flipping through a catalog when I discovered a Mossberg Maverick 88 for $150. I told her that was what I wanted and she agreed to go in on half of it with me for my very first shotgun. I really enjoyed shooting that shotgun and was quickly becoming a gun enthusiast.
One of my friends, who is 6 months older than I, received a Ruger P95 for his 21st birthday. I was so jealous and just had to own a handgun. I spent the next 6 months researching the type of pistol that I would buy and saving my money. Even though I was in college I had a decent job and had no issues saving money. Growing up around Norfolk Virginia there were no shortage of military veterans. I had many friends both at school and in my personal life that knew more than me about pistols. The general consensus among my friends and the online forums was that Glocks were a great bang for the buck. This was 2007 and the .40s&w was the king so I decided on a Glock 22. I had shot one before and really liked it.
The week leading up to my 21st birthday I was like a kid getting excited for Christmas morning. In fact I was probably more excited than I had ever been. Sure I was looking forward to being able to legally drink but that didn’t hold a candle to actually having my first handgun. The night before, I was sitting at the bar at 11:30 waiting for the clock to strike midnight to have my first bar beer but I really only cared about the next morning. I had a few drinks and then hit the hay. The gun store didn’t open until 10am but I was there sitting in the parking lot at 9:50 waiting for them to open. I was the first in line and didn’t even have to touch it. I told them what I wanted, filled out the paper work, and within 30 minutes was upstairs, at their indoor range, sending the first of many pistol rounds down range.
I shot religiously every single week, and within a few months I had my concealed carry permit. I realized the full size Glock 22 was too big to carry so I headed back down to that same gun store and purchased a Glock 27. I really enjoyed carrying that Glock 27 it was a lot smaller, but could still use all the same mags, ammo and accessories as the Glock 22. I eventually picked up a Keltec P3AT for the times when the Glock 27 was still too big to carry and over time it began to see the most carry time. By 2012 among other rifles and shotguns I had acquired a Ruger GP100, SP101, a Springfield Milspec 1911, and a Browning Buckmark on top of the 3 that I already owned. However, that year something crazy happened and ammo prices went through the roof. The .40s&w rounds that I would buy for $18/100 in 2007 had doubled and I wanted something cheaper.
I was always told that the 9mm was for weaklings and I wasn’t a weakling. I was a lineman in football in high school and still worked out quite a bit. The round that I shot was very much connected to my ego. However with prices being what they were I decided to get a 9mm. I came upon a very good deal on a Gen 3 Glock 19 with Austrian Proof marks and decided that it was the one for me. I had initially purchased it so that I could practice shooting a Glock without all of the expense. The 19 made the most sense to me in 9mm because it held 15 rounds and was the perfect size between my Glock 27 and Glock 22.
However, like so many things, as time progressed so did I. I began to shoot that Glock 19 more and more and the .40s&w Glocks less and less. At one point I had realized that I had acquired too many calibers and one had to go. It had been several years since I fired the .40s and it just made the most sense to let them go. I sold the Glock 27 to a family member and managed to trade in the Glock 22 for a Glock 17 Gen 3 in Comparable condition.
I have owned everything from the oh so cheap P3AT to a very nice Dan Wesson Bruin 10mm. I have also carried revolvers like the SP101 and a LCR and have carried some nice pistols like a Springfield EMP 9mm. However, over the last 10 years many guns, like girlfriends, have come and gone. However I am happily married now and still have that Glock 19. Although it wasn’t my first love, I am pretty confident that it will be my last.