KRMA Radio is special in that it offers a 3 hour block of time to delve into a single firearms topic – with guests, and callers. Topics can vary from Concealed carry to women shooters, from Collecting to legislation effecting the 2nd amendment to the Constitution. Set your alarm / reminder and join us this week and every week. Eye On The Target Radio with Rob and Amanda
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Robs earliest firearms memory involves handling a Stevens .22 when he was about 4 or 5, and then for his 8th birthday he became the proud owner of a .410 shotgun. But the love of his young life was a .44 Magnum Marlin rifle that he got when he was 13. He couldn’t hit the broad side of a barn with it. His uncles said that it was his aim, and so he practiced and practiced. Then Rob gave it to them to shoot, that’s when they collectively decided that it must be the gun’s fault. This practice is evident when you see him in action at the reunion shoots.
His activities in the sport have included working as an assistant in Hunter Safety Education and for several years has been a volunteer Range Safety Officer at NRA National Conventions B-B-Gun Range. He says that his “favorite thing is to assist a grade schooler who has never shot before. They start out very timid and unsure, yet there will be all this concentration on their faces, and then the smile that appears when they hold up a “bulls-eye”. They have given it their all and are so very proud of the target that they take back to their moms & dads.” Hopefully the shooting bug has been planted.
For years Rob has been hosting an annual backyard marksmanship shoot that has become so popular that it is now a ‘by invitation only’ event. Every year the shooters wait to see what the targets will be. They are always very creative and somewhat entertaining. One year it was 5 lollipops on a swivel, and each had to be hit. Another held an activity where the participants’ registration numbers were printed on the offside of the target, and the target was turned over and positioned against the back stop, the shooters were required to shoot their registration number through the target. Regardless, every year it is a creative shooting event that is a mix of luck and skill, and lots of fun.
Rob says there can be no better job in the world than this one, where he can talk to people who are interested in firearms and he gets to play with a gun all day.
While Amanda was focusing her career on training, problem solving and operations management, she traveled the US extensively. This travel put her in cities with no knowledge of the safeness of that area. Given the world situation, her concern for personal safety grew. Then came the day that she opted for a career change to teach others safety, self-confidence, and firearms skills.
She says that her earliest firearms memory was one sunny afternoon. “My Dad took my brothers and I out to the back hill to shoot at the bed of a 49 Chevy pickup truck. The truck was parked on the side of a big hill, and my uncle was salvaging parts from it. I guess that Dad must have just gotten a new black powder 36 caliber Colt Navy, and I being 6 or 7 was up for the adventure. We were told to focus on the back of the truck because Ray still wanted to get the glass from the doors.
The boys all took turns shooting at the bed of the truck, and then it was my turn. Dad gave me the pistol, put both my hands on the grip, stood right behind me so my little shoulders were against him. He positioned me and told me to shoot at the truck and to hold on tightly. I held the pistol out, and it felt like it circled round and round, and then I pulled the trigger. The blast was tremendous (I still remember that after 30 odd years) and I jolted back against Dads legs. When I opened my eyes I saw that I had shot right through the passenger side window and out the drivers side. The boys laughed and laughed, so much for salvaging the glass.”
With a background in firearms (her father is a well known collector of Ruger 357 pistols) and an interest in safety, Firearms Training was a natural progression. Amanda is certified through the NRA for a variety of disciplines including Refuse To Be A Victim, Personal Protection, Basic Firearms Safety – Pistol, Shotgun and Rifle. She is also a Range Safety Officer and an ALICE active shooter response instructor.