Gun Safety Question and Eddie the Eagle

I was scrolling threw Facebook yesterday when I saw someone ask a Firearms Safety question.

" Is it ok to store my handgun empty and with the magazine empty."

The individual asked the question in a firearms group, and people mocked the gun owner.

Yes, it’s ok to store your handgun empty. If you have kids and you don’t have a handgun vault. I would NOT keep any bullets in your pistol when it’s not on your person.

Here’s why

A 3 three-year-old boy in Jackson County accidentally killed himself with his father’s handgun. The child’s father, Deputy Mark Easter, worked for the Jackson County Sheriff’s Office and was on his way to do when the tragic accident happened. The boy’s mother was supervising the child at the time. The boy shot himself in the head.

I can’t imagine the grief the father and mother experienced from losing their son. You may wonder How did a three three-year-old get his father’s pistol? How did a small child get his father’s loaded gun?

I don’t know. But this tragic Accident in Jackson County shows us Gun Safety is essential. I believe handguns should be kept in a locked gun safe if children are in the home.

However, If you have children at home and don’t have a way to lock your handgun up when it’s not on you, please keep your gun unloaded with the ammunition stored elsewhere.

This tragic accident in Jackson County is why I offer Eddie the Eagle for Free; This gun safety class from the NRA is free. Eddie the Eagle teaches children. " Stop -Don’t touch -Run Away -Tell a Grown-Up if they see a gun.

How do you answer this question?

Have you ever heard of Eddie the Eagle?


I’ve stored my pistol with one in the chamber in a $20 lock box at the top of my closet. That’s plenty of lock for a small child. If you can afford a gun, you can afford a $20 lock box. You don’t need a $200 safe.

If you have “fun guns” I would unload the mags and gun when stores. I have a 22 lr revolver. That is a toy for me. It is never stored loaded.

My carry gun always has one in the chamber unless I’m cleaning it or doing dry fire exercises. I always have loaded magazines.

If you have a gun for self defense separate from your magazine, imagine needing that gun ASAP for a self defense situation. THEN, on top of that, you have to load the magazine with bullets…

I also believe keeping one in the chamber of my carry gun makes it safer for me. I’m not likely to forget a round in the chamber because I already know there is one. I don’t have to fiddle with my gun in the morning. I can just unlock my case and put my holstered gun on my belt.

If one is that concerned, buy a $20 lock box. Keep a loaded mag with an empty handgun in your lock box. OR put one in the chamber and keep the trigger covered while in the lock box.

My other answer is educate educate educate. Telling kids “don’t touch” Peaks curiosity. Don’t just teach guns are dangerous and bad. Explain what they do. Instill in them the rules of firearm safety. My dad taught me gun safety with a BB gun. I was shooting BB guns and Bow and Arrow when I was 4or5 (the rules are the same with little risk. I grew up in a house with an unlocked shotgun with ammo right by it. My siblings and I never touched that gun. We also were disciplined… so not getting into trouble was advised for us :rofl::joy:.

Tragic story, but lock you’re gun up, educate your children, and discipline.


I know that there are a lot of strong opinions on this, but the bottom line is that no one here is responsible for maintaining or securing my firearms, my family, or any of my property. No one but me will lose money based on how I store my weapons. No one here will mourn if my children are hurt. But also, no one here will magically appear to defend my family if someone breaks into my house.

Yes, you can store your weapon in any safe way that makes sense in your situation, including your level of training, your family, your budget, your house, your local laws, your risk tolerance, local crime, etc. By all means seek advice (that’s why I come here so often), but don’t feel bullied by people who think that their decisions fit your circumstances. Ultimately, having a firearm near is better than having nothing.


Unfortunately there is no perfect solution when small kids are in the house.
Best we can do is the safe. But good safe. With rapid access and heavy enough to prevent taking it out by kids.
We all love our kids, we know they are good, calm and polite… :smiling_imp: But hopefully we remember how was to be a kid. There was nothing on the Earth my Parents could hide from me. We never had firearms at home, so I never played with them this way.
Once I became Parent, I knew - either good safe or no firearms at all.
I was responsible for my kids until they reach 21 and that was the time I introduced them to firearms. I knew they are 100% responsible and they could recite “4 Safety Rules” in the middle of the night.

" Is it ok to store my handgun empty and with the magazine empty."

Yes it is. But I also keep second magazine loaded in other room.


I have a 2 and 4 yr old. The 4 yr old is very aware of guns in the house. He can’t get to any of them. However I have exposed him to them in a safe manner. He was very curious at first now he thinks they are boring cause they just sit there and are heavy. Personally I wanted him to lose his curiosity. This will be a long process of introducing him and his brother to firearms.
As mentioned above there is not a one size fits all. Look at what some people do and don’t do, then come up with solutions that fit your needs and capabilities


Responsible firearm ownership includes keeping your firearms secure so only those you authorize have access. What that means is very different depending on your personal circumstances, live alone, children in your home and maybe even your neighborhood.


I’m with @Jerzy. As I kid, I found everything my parents tried to hide from me. Including guns - unloaded and loaded. Fortunately, I was smart enough not to mess with them.

When I purchased my first firearm, I made sure to buy a case that can be locked. Over the years, more guns meant more or bigger locking cases. My safes / locking metal cabinets are probably not what real gun enthusiasts would use, but they serve to prevent casual or accidental access. Someone will need to purposely break into something with a tool to gain access to a firearm in my house.


I will add to my long original post. If you are leaving young kids, or even teens alone in the house for extended periods of time, locking ammo up is a good idea.

My kid is only 3 months right now. I’ve told my wife, as he gets older, I will reevaluate our gun safety situation. Right now, I have my carry gun on a shelf in the living room. My boy can’t crawl, walk or move.

I have two guns in condition 3 on my night stand (loaded mags/ empty chamber). As he gets older I may switch from my current HD gun and carry gun set up to one gun for carry and HD. This gun always leaves with me or is locked up when I’m present at home in a quick access safe.

All that being said, I have guns to protect my family. If I can’t access a gun quickly to protect my family, it’s pointless in my eyes, BUT safety precautions have to be constantly evaluated. There are many different options and ways to have guns around family and be safe.

Unfortuantely, many of these stories of kids shooting are kids that find an unlocked gun in a drawer at home, or mommy’s purse (I am somewhat against off the body carry. It can be done, but just throwing a gun in your purse loose and leaving your purse around with a gun can be dangerous. It can be done correctly though.) I’m not saying a kid couldn’t find his way into a safe or lockbox somehow, that’s why if your leaving kids at home for bourse every day, or your kid walks home/ rides the bus and stays home for a period of time unattended, locking ammo and guns not being carried separate is a good idea.

Sorry for the long posts. This is a topic I’m passionate about :joy:.


@Scoutbob - 3 months kid… you have plenty of time to re-evaluate home safety for the future.
Be aware of kid’s mind in each period. You are good for next few months.
Then kid start walking and grabbing everything without knowing what he/she is doing.
Elementary School - curiosity, but still kids may not understand the danger
Middle and High School - they know you have a firearm, why not show it to friends…

Once the kids can “sing” “4 Safety Rules” I would consider it as right time :face_with_raised_eyebrow: Age of 21 in my kids case.


Paul Harrell brought this topic up in a video I’m watching (9:44)


Actually I’m more for locking up the teens,:scream_cat: until they are fully aware and understand the dangerous world we live in.
I think in most states it’s laws that require firearms to be locked up if children occupy your home. That’s something every parent should abide. We don’t need laws, just some common sense.
Who leaves an unlocked and loaded gun lying around the house but locks the cabinet where the Clorox is located?
We are a gunsational society, it’s time we taught safety and respect for firearms as passionately as we worry about laundry detergent pods and toys with small choking parts.
All kids are curious about things they don’t know about. Fifteen minutes of Call of Duty and a ten year old can disassemble and reassemble an AK47. But does that same ten year old understand the consequences of firing said weapons. Not until you’ve taken them to the range.
I say teach, teach and more teaching until they understand that you can’t unring a bell! I started teaching my kids and grandkids very early, as soon as they could understand the the alphabet.
They learned about crossing the street, they learned about fire, they learned about defense, they learned about drugs and alcohol. I learned they are not perfect, but I know they will never use a firearm unless deadly force is authorized and required. They will never go looking for a gun in someone’s house. They will never display, show or inform anyone that a gun is present in their home.
Have they been in car accidents, toked on a joint, felt the room spin after a heavy night of course they have.
If guns and safety were at the forefront I’m sure there would be a lot less crime and accidents.
The Russians and the Chinese and other wonderful countries around the world have no problems teaching children how to use guns.
Hence the infantry unit. Youth foot soldiers.
We are a peaceful yet naive nation. Our children are kept in the dark, they think the world is their oyster, as soon as they realize there’s no Santa, Easter Bunny and OMG no tooth fairy, they blame us for all the worlds problems. Then they are taught that guns kill people and not the other way around.
Nowadays I think it’s time to skip the typing class and introduce firearms training in public schools. Oh sh!# did I say that out loud?

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I definitely agree with this. If you go on YouTube, you can find multiple stories of teens fighting off a home invader with a fire arm.

With my family, I will be taking it one step at a time. Don’t be shocked if I’m the guy bringing his 8 year old boy to the range to shoot a . 22 rifle. That being said, every family is different. Every kid is different. I don’t have a clear cut answer for this to be honest. There are stories of kids fighting a bad guy off with a gun, and there are stories of kids shooting themselves.

I agree with you %100 about educating about fire arms. I’ve posted this in multiple places, but our society says education is the answer to car wrecks, teen pregnancy, tolerance of cultures and other people, BUT firearms arms are evil. Just don’t touch… doesn’t make sense to me. I’ve actually seen a health lesson for fire arms. The instructor was a great guy, but he knew nothing of fire arms and the curriculum was a joke. Don’t touch. Tell an adult. That’s just asking for a kid to grab a gun and play with it if they ever find one.