Welcome to the Community! Please Introduce Yourself


@NJStraightShooter Thanks NJ, much appreciated. Glad to be aboard. I should have joined the online community earlier. I’ve been a member for years, but am finally taking more advantage of what is available. I couldn’t be happier with the USCCA. Looking forward to this new online format and App.


Hi everyone, I’m Steve 5/18
(Since there’re a lot of Steves I included the mm/dd, maybe I’ll change my name later.)

My start? I’ve seen enough dead victims of crime that I don’t want to see more. I don’t want to be a crime victim.

Training time? Not much, about 4 yrs.

Formal training? none

Best SD advice? Situational Awareness, avoid the fight.

Favorite gun(s)? Glock 17 & 19.

Training? Way too little. Maybe next weekend.

Family involvement? Yes, usually my son goes to the range with me, and my wife attended a women’s basic handgun class through A Girl And A Gun class and learned that she can shoot and operate a G17.

What to learn? Stop the low left shots.


LOL and amen! In that order. :slight_smile:

Glad to have you here @Stephen2


Hi my name is Richard. Glad to be part of USCCA. My first gun was a .357 Colt Python I bought in Texas for $300 in 1989. Gave it to my Godson when he joined the Marines in 2005. My EDC is typically a S&W Shield .40 cal or Glock 22. I’m excited to start looking at the posts from this community.


@Stephen2 and @Richard4, Welcome to the community.

Whether you have information to share or want to learn something new, you have come to the right place. You can even ask anyone here about anything. We are a very friendly group. We might even know the answer. :wink:


Here’s my attempt to follow directions :stuck_out_tongue: :

  • Who are you? A guy from the north who’s been living in the south for about 15 years, and I’m loving the hot and humid weather.
  • What got you interested in carrying and self-defense? A friend suggested that I might like it. I shot a few of his, took the CCL course in 2012 and it has been up or down hill since then, depending on how you look at it!
  • How long have you been training for your self-defense? On and off for a few years, but USCCA site has offered the best training I’ve found so far. I’m still trying to find a place local to me to take some more advanced in person training.
  • What formal training have you had? CCL course, a LOT of range time, some in person courses, and the Internet. More to come.
  • What’s the best advice you’ve ever gotten regarding your self-defense? Don’t be the person who escalates, only respond to what you are presented with.
  • What’s your favorite gun? Funny question…does anyone have just one? I could shoot the CX4 all day,
  • How often do you train? I get to the range at least once a month for about 2 hours.
  • How have you gotten your friends and family involved? Introduce them at home so that they can hold different types without an audience and talk openly about their questions and thoughts, all before taking them to the range.
  • What do you hope to learn from others in the USCCA Community? Variety is the spice of life, no? I look forward to hearing others thoughts and opinions all related topics.

Raised in Wyoming in a very small community in the Uintah mountain range. Raised with firearms. Moved to Omaha Nebraska where I became the stable manager for the Mounted Patrol. I assisted the officers with training. Also worked for a retired police officer learning the does and don’ts of defending yourself and the people around you. I am the type of person who will defend anybody in trouble. I also work at a University as a safety and security officer. I try to practice as much as I can. I watch and learn as much as I can about using a weapon in self defense and learning everything I can about the weapon I carry. This country seems to change everyday, so learning to change with it and continually defend our 2 amendment rights is a daily learning experience.


Welcome @John15 you sound like you’ve had an interesting life!
Glad you’ve joined us and are jumping in… lots of good conversations here!

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Welcome @John15. That job worked for mounted officers sounds pretty cool.


It was a great job. Two of our officers were Mounted Patrol training officers so MP officers from around the country would come here and train. If I wouldn’t of hurt my back I would probably still be there. The officers I worked with made me the person I am today.


Welcome to the community @John15. Seems like you have had a history with firearms and then working with and for the Mounted Patrol was the icing on the cake. :cake:

We love it when people like yourself have information to share as this is a learning community. Feel free to share whatever you know. Plus, there are many topics of information here that you may find something that you wanted to learn. Thank You for defending our 2nd Amendment.

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Greetings from Alaska.

I’ve been into shooting my whole life. Worked many hours of chores for dad when I was about 8 to fill up a chart he made that ended with him buying me my first Daisy lever-action BB gun (there was no compass in the stock, but it was still a classic). He surprised me with my first .22LR rifle at Christmas the next year. I still have it and shoot it occasionally for fun.

I built a muzzle-loading Hawkins rifle from kit when I was in 8th Grade. Ironically, I did that at school where we actually had a class called “History of Firearms”. It spent half the semester in the classroom learning about firearm history and mechanics. Then it transitioned to the wood shop where every student built a rifle. You could buy the Thompson Center kits down at the local hardware store for under $100 in those days. In the class, we learned about wood finishing (shaping & sanding), part fitting, wood staining, linseed oil finishing, brass polishing, and barrel browning. The end of the school year culminated with a big field trip where the first semester and second semester firearms students went to the range with a half-dozen teachers to participate in a full day of black powder competition shooting. I still have that rifle and shoot it regularly.

I served in the Army right out of HS in the late 80’s and signed on with a volunteer fire department when I got home as I started using that GI Bill money to go to college. Worked my way through in-house offerings at the fire department and became an EMT. Continued in shooting sports as a hobby and became an instructor for the local 4H Program. Taught a lot of local kids how to shoot. At the same time, I was teaching CPR and First Aid classes to adults in the community and discovered that I really enjoyed teaching. Eventually went to Paramedic school at the state University and have continued on that path moving from pubic to private sector in 2001.

Have been a tactical firearms instructor since 2003 working for a large, armed security company. A small cadre of us train a force of about 200 officers. I don’t really do general public shooting classes, but I have had a number of “off the books” small-group training sessions that I’ve done via word-of-mouth. Those have generally started with a “we should get together at the range” and turn into impromptu training classes when we do. I’ve had a guy covertly shove money into my hand after I spent a couple hours giving one-on-one instruction to his wife when we all went to the range to have a little shooting fun and then I started giving her some shooting guidance which then practically turned into a mini self-defense shooting class. She was doing a couple things not quite right and he was getting flustered trying to correct and she wasn’t taking instruction from him very well (very common issue with husbands trying to teach wives to shoot). He gave me “the look” and I stepped in. My teaching style has always been very gentle, patient, and with a thorough explanation of why we do anything that we’re trying to teach you to do. I’ve always had a knack for teaching new shooters and I do pretty well with the ladies (teaching them to shoot, that is).

These days, I still do a lot with handguns, but my shooting interests are pretty eclectic. I shoot a wide variety of pistols from wheel guns to the modern plastic autos to 1911 style. I hunt and shoot precision bolt-rifles to keep up with that skill set. I shoot black powder. I reload. I do basic armorer work. I’ve built quite a few ARs and a couple 80% pistols. I love to trap shoot (a little skeet, but more of a trap guy), but I also like to shoot tactical shotgun, so I have a variety of shotguns. I’m about the only guy at the Trap range that you see with a 28" barrel on a Rem 870 who is doing ejection port loads from the side saddle between each target call. You can often find a way to mesh the different skills together. One round of trap is 25 free ejection port loads. Great way to practice the skill.

Oh yeah; I can be very long-winded. I’ve been a great typist since 7th grade and I can let my fingers ramble on nearly as much as my mouth will during a face-to-face conversation. I consider myself an intellectual who doesn’t fit into any established box or type. Give me a topic and I’ll analyze it up and down from the left and the right, and then come up with my own opinion or theory that probably doesn’t perfectly align with any particular ideology. For instance, I like Glocks AND I also like 1911s. I know, it’s weird, right?



Welcome to the Community, @Richard4, @Brad, @John15, and @Scott1! I’m so glad to have you all here! Please jump in and have some awesome conversations.

(and no worries about being long-winded, @Scott1, there are a few of us who go into a ton of detail like you do :slight_smile: )

  • Who are you?
    I’m Thomas (Tom) Joyce! I’m a 29-year-old from the Philadelphia, PA region. I was born in South Korea and adopted; I’ve been in the US since 6mo old and am a fully patriotic citizen! I’ve been a member of the USCCA since Dec. 2018, and had a blast at the USCCA Carry Expo. I was very impressed, and it made me even more confident in my choice to trust the USCCA to help me before AND after an incident (if it ever comes to that!).

  • What got you interested in carrying and self-defense?
    I’ve always had an interest in firearms, although my parents don’t love them. I first started carrying when I was 21 or 22.

  • How long have you been training for your self-defense?
    I guess you could include the years in older childhood where I participated in karate. I started shooting around when I was 21 or so.

  • What formal training have you had?
    Depends on your definition of formal as well as what qualifies as related training! So I’m going to pass on this one.

  • What’s the best advice you’ve ever gotten regarding your self-defense?
    Hard to say what the “best” advice I’ve heard was, but in the Advanced Concealed Carry - Close Quarters Shooting & Weapons Retention training, a point was made specific to trigger pulls and where on the finger to pull from (although I think it applies to all aspects of “shooting form”)… DO WHAT WORKS FOR YOU!
    I hear a lot about “do it this way” and “don’t do it that way” with an implication of a right/wrong method, when it’s probably more realistic to say “Try this, but if it doesn’t work for you, that’s cool too, but find SOMETHING that works and is somewhat natural for you.”

  • What’s your favorite gun?
    Either my Stoeger M3000 Sport (semi 12GA, 30”), my CZ 455 Varmint (w/ the wood stock with the ergonomic cutout), my Ruger Mk IV tactical, or my Glock 36 (since I depend on it)… or basically all of them :wink:

  • How often do you train?
    As much/often as I can! Not just range time, but laser/dry fire drills at home, and also planning for different situations that might arise!

  • How have you gotten your friends and family involved?
    I’ve taken a number of friends to the range. I start with a safety rundown at home, and monitor them on the range until they demonstrate safe handling as a habit. I’ve noticed that new shooters frequently are more rigid about safe practices than experienced shooters (possibly due to being more comfortable and not as nervous… can lead to becoming lax or laid back!)

  • What do you hope to learn from others in the USCCA Community?
    I’d like to learn about anything and everything people will share with me! I love learning through respectful debate, demonstration, analyzing self-made videos, and hands-on practice. Would be willing to make friends in the Bucks County/Philadelphia, PA region to go shooting together and maybe even help each other develop and improve our skills!


Hi @iamteeg! I remember meeting you this weekend in Pittsburgh! Glad to have you here!!



After reading your introduction, I think you will not only fit in but really enjoy this community. Jump in any topic or start one if you own. I am sure you will have great things to add to the conversations.


You’ll get along with me and my hubby just fine :grin:
Where in AK are you? My sister was in Wasilla.


Thank you. It is great to be here.


Hey everyone,

My name is Mike and I am a Tennessee transplant living in Alabama. I’ve been involved in shooting/martial arts/fitness since I was a teenager, which was a LONG time ago. I spent 14 years total in law enforcement as a Patrol Officer/Sergeant/SWAT guy for a mid-sized city in Tennessee and also have spent another 15 or so years in Security Management (current position). I also owned a private investigations company for over a decade.

I’ve trained in many different martial arts, which after many years evolved into strictly combatives, mostly from the WWII era. I have trained in Martial Blade Concepts and AMOK!, as well as several shooting schools and other assorted training sessions (far too many to mention here).

I EDC (in addition to an ASP palm defender OC, small tac-light, and Benchmade AFCK) either a Glock 32 in .357 Sig loaded with Speer Gold Dot 125 grain HP, or a S&W Shield loaded with Federal micro-HST 150 grain.

I looked forward to getting to “know” everyone here, I’ve long respected the work the USCCA does!


Welcome to the Community, @Ronin! Thank you for your service to your community in law enforcement.