I recently joined my church’s volunteer security team here in Arizona. Like most of the other team members, I carry concealed. I saw the video of the shooting at the West Freeway Church of Christ in Texas and noted the first person shot was one of the security team members. From what I saw, it appeared he had problems getting to his firearm fast enough because it was almost at his back, and possibly under an untucked shirt. He was shot just as his firearm came into view. I normally carry on my right hip at the 4 o’clock position. That incident got me to thinking I should be either carrying cross draw or in a shoulder holster for quick and easy access to my firearm if seated. My preference is for a shoulder rig (I carry a Beretta 92fs compact). If this wasn’t AZ, the item of clothing to cover the shoulder rig would not be hard to find. Unfortunately, this IS AZ and my options for concealment without standing out (wearing a jacket) during the summer are limited. Any suggestions? Thanks
I sometimes wear a shoulder rig when it is cooler out and I have more laborious activities. Personally, I don’t suggest it for your specific situation (lots of reasons I don’t want to go into typing on my phone). I’m guessing it’s uncommon for members to wear sport jackets during service because of the heat.
Does the"security team" you are referring to have other responsibilities, i.e. assisting members with medical issues, directing members to the proper exits in case of a fire, communicating with and assisting emergency services and paramedics for medical emergencies, etc? Does your team want to be identified as security or church service members by other church members? Is the security team a cohesive group that trains together on strategies for situations such as those I’ve mentioned above? I’m asking because a uniform, i.e. a sport jacket, could open up more options like OWB, and aid in many different emergency situations.
If not, I might suggest sticking with your current setup. If you are concerned about sitting down, maybe you could stand for the service. Different churches have different layouts and procedures that might or might not work with suggestions here.
I live in Florida and wear UnderTech undershirt/holsters. Over them, I wear a “fishing” shirt (tucked in) or “Hawaiian” shirt (untucked). This gives me the shoulder holster option without a lot of rigging to cover.
I have nothing against shoulder holsters and am not saying using one would be better or worse for you in any way (that’s a personal preference thing) , but I don’t personally think the position of that guys holster was the problem.
I personally believe that was a training issue. He didn’t appear to be comfortable with his equipment and draw. I am not saying that to speak ill of him or even to criticize really. It makes me very sad the situation unfolded the way it did.
Whatever equipment you choose, you have to train with it and then you need to train some more. You need to train for the types of situations you’ll be involved in. In other words, if you’re going to be wearing a sport coat and transitioning from sitting to standing to whatever else you may have to do, then you need to work those movements into your training as well to make sure you can do them quickly and efficiently.
Yes. I agree fully.
Action beats reaction. The reactionary gap in this case was fatal. The killer initiated the action by aiming his shotgun in the direction of security team member Richard White who stood up, calling attention to himself, reached under his sports coat for his weapon in the small of his back, and attempted to present it, at which time the bad guy pressed the trigger. Then the killer shot usher Tony Wallace who was closer, giving Jack Wilson the time to draw, avoid parishioners who did not immediately get down and fire one round at over 40 feet to stop the killer with a head shot. All this occurred within 6 seconds.
The security team was watching the killer from the time he entered the church, but did not confront him before his entry. I chatted with one of the LE individuals who addressed the public shortly after the killings. He agrees, action beats reaction. In a perfect world, an off duty uniformed officer at the entry or vestibule would more easily be in a position to stop and chat with the would be killer and perhaps avoid what occurred. Kind of akin to all the airport security designed to keep a miscreant from actually boarding an aircraft. A great augmentation of the security team. After this killing, local authorities encouraged parishioners who are uniformed officers to wear their uniforms at services.
In the couple seconds available to Richard before he acted did he review his options to remain seated and do nothing? Did he act to draw fire and sacrifice himself to save others, akin to jumping on that live grenade? Did he think he could beat the odds and draw on a weapon already cocked and primed? Only Richard could answer these questions but he’s gone to be with our Lord.
So, we’re left to speculate, analyze and hopefully benefit from his sacrifice. Stay safe, stay vigilant.
Keystonecop, right on.
As it relatest to the TX shooting, I don’t think any holster will help you if you try to draw on a guy holding a shotgun already, although Justin is right, the guy didn’t look like he had practiced.
I don’t like the shoulder rig from the perspective of safety–you are almost always breaking the number one safety rule, not to mention you have to sweep across your arm when drawing your firearm.
Whatever you choose–please–practice drawing. Video tape yourself with your phone drawing and look for areas for improvement.
Si vis pacem, para bellum