July 18, 2002
Find Mobility Vans and Accessible Vans for Sale at AMS Vans.
Compare prices for handicap vans with power wheelchair lifts and accessible ramps. All scooter and wheelchair vans converted by AMS Vans come with 7/70 conversion warranties and are financed, serviced and delivered nationwide. Call 1.800.775.8267 and mention ICDRI to receive a $250 discount!!!
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Born May 14, 1951 in Washington, DC (51 years old). Grew up an Air Force "brat" as my father was career military. Attended 14 schools in 12 years; my family was stationed at Charleston Air Force Base six of the 12 years and I graduated from high school there. When I go back for class reunions, it seems like coming home.
As a kid, I loved shooting whenever I had the opportunity to shoot. Was able to do some rabbit, squirrel and bird hunting when visiting grandparents on the farm in Southeastern NC. Of course, my BB gun and baseball glove were my two most cherished possessions growing up.
After high school graduation, I enlisted in the Air Force to fulfill my military duty to my country. Vietnam was raging in 1969 and I knew I would have to go sooner or later. My plan was to do my military service and then use the GI Bill to get further educated.
I volunteered for Security Police because I knew I would get to shoot as much as I wanted. Handguns, rifles, shotguns, .30 caliber and .50 caliber machine guns, and even got to play around with 81 mm mortars. Graduated "Outstanding Honor Graduate" from Security Police school after being trained in law enforcement and nuclear security.
My first duty assignment was with the 68th Bomb Wing, Strategic Air Command, Seymour Johnson AFB, Goldsboro, NC in the summer of 1970. My job was guarding a B-52 in the alert bomber area with a payload of 12 nuclear warheads. There were nine alert bombers in this secured area that were ready to fly on a moments notice if the orders came down. It was kind of like living the movie "Dr. Strangelove" (Peter Sellers--Slim Pickens).
I received orders in September of 1970 for Phu Cat AB (air base), Republic of Vietnam. The end of November and most of December was spent in Texas undergoing Asian Zone Readiness (AZR) training, i.e. combat school. Now that was real fun--even had the priviledge of crawling 100 yards on the basic infiltration course under live .30 caliber machine gun fire. At night, the tracers make the prettiest red lines just over your head. And to think, for every red line that you saw there were four more rounds in the air. I was a happy camper when that was over.
I left McChord AFB, Seattle, WA for Vietnam on January 27, 1971. Twenty hours later I arrived in Cam Ranh Bay on January 29--we crossed the International Dateline, I lost the 28th day of January, 1971. I caught a flight on a C-7 Carribou up country to Phu Cat and signed into the 12th Security Police Squadron, 12th Combat Support Group, Seventh Air Force. The thing I quickly realized about being in a war-zone is that it truly is 90% boredom and 10% sheer terror.
After my tour of duty was completed, I was assigned to the 363rd Security Police Squadron, 363rd Tactical Fighter Wing, Shaw AFB, Sumter, SC. The neat thing about receiving orders for Shaw was the fact that my father was also stationed there. I processed in at Shaw in early February 1972 and worked as the desk sergeant for Cobra Flight (midnight shift) law enforcement.
On May 25th, 1972, while on a three day pass, I was involved in a motorcycle accident which resulted in complete paralysis due to a compression fracture at T-5. Crusing at about 35 mph, an older man with poor sight just didn't see me and made a left turn into my path. The next 4 1/2 months was spent at the Portsmouth Naval Hosp, Portsmouth, Va recuperating. Then 4 1/2 months in rehab at the Richmond Veterans Administration Hosp in Richmond, Va.
Aftrer being discharged from the VA Hosp I became a beach bum at Myrtle Beach, simply because I could. I met my wife, Lynn, in 1981 and we were married in April of 1982. Our son, Marshall, is a graduate of UNC, Greensboro with two degrees. Needless to say, we are both very proud of him!
In December of 1982, I started Limited Electric, Inc., a load management consulting and engineering business, which has since become A-1 Energy International, Inc. After twenty years it keeps me somewhat busy, but there is always time for shotgunning. Where most companies use golf as entertainment and to seal the deal, we use sporting clays.
After Vietnam I just didn't care about seeing anything in the sights of a gun. It took twenty years and a childhood friend to get me out shooting again. The friend, Ron Herring, took me on a sporting clays shoot for my birthday in May of 1992. I loved it from that very first quartering away target, and would be afraid to say how many clay birds I've shot at since that day.
Six months after my first sporting round, I was invited to shoot with General Schwarzkopf in his charity shoot, The Schwarzkopf Cup, to benefit The Miami Project to Cure Paralysis. I was able to participate in all Schwarzkopf Cup's to benefit The Miami Project from 1992 to 1998 (the last year it was held). In 1995, I was the Captain of the winning team and am very proud of my Schwarzkopf Cup which sits on a trophy shelf in my office.
At the 1996 Cup, in mid-March, I was approached by Sam Rensi, Vice President of Firearms and International Trade for Remington Arms Company, who asked if I would like to shoot under contract. He also wanted me to become an instructor at the Remington Shooting School, which I did. By the last week of March I was in Orlando instructing for Remington.
I continued instructing eleven days a month, every other month for the next year. The school was in Orlando in the winter and Ilion, NY in the summer--not altogether a bad deal.
Due to my affiliation with Remington I have been able to attend celebrity shoots such as The Louise Mandrell Shoot and the Nascar drivers shoot for the Nascar Wives Auxillary at Summer Duck Farm. With Remington's participation in Nascar, I've met many of the drivers, car owners and others in the sport.
It's still hard to believe that I've had the priviledge to know and shoot with Dale Earnhardt and Dale Jr., Richard and Kyle Petty, Bobby and Donnie Allison, Ron Hornaday, Kevin Harvick, Jeff Burton and many more. I can even say that Mike Helton, President and CEO of Nascar, is a good friend.
Two of my favorite charity events are the Think First for Kids Cloister Classic at Sea Island, Georgia, for the Think First Foundation - a national injury prevention foundation, and the Lakeshore Foundation Sporting Clays Challenge at Selwood Farm outside of Talladega, Alabama.
I was given the honor of being nominated to the Board of Directors of the Think First Foundation this past March at the shoot in Sea Island. I look forward to the opportunity to work with the kids that this foundation reaches and educates about the importance of protecting the brain and spinal cord. I am sure that I can make an impact on the kids that I will speak to, and they will remember the message I will leave with them--use your mind to protect your body... think first before doing something unwise or unsafe that may have life-altering consequences.
Even though I'm not doing as much for Remington now as in the past, the relationship is as solid as ever. I will always shoot my Remington guns and use Remington ammo because I truly believe in, and enjoy using Remington equipment. After almost six and a half years of being associated with Remington Arms, like Clayton Moore will always be the "Lone Ranger", I guess I will always be that guy from Remington.
I will end with an affirmation of my faith in God and my saviour, Jesus, The Christ. Without whom I could not have lasted this long under these conditions in my life. With faith came the knowledge that paralysis is just a slight inconvenience that allows me to stand out in a crowd. God has helped me keep the proper attitude and perspective on the one hand, and has blessed me beyond belief on the other. To Him I give all the praise and glory.
Need a wheelchair van? Service, Selection and Value are what set AMS Wheelchair Vans apart from all the other Wheelchair Van Dealers. Their outstanding selections of over 60 used wheelchair vans come with brand new side or rear entry lowered floor minivan conversions and 7/70 limited warranties. Need an accessible van today? Good News, AMS handicap vans are ready for immediate nationwide delivery. Need Mobility Van Funding? No problem it's available in all 50 states and so is nationwide wheelchair van service. AMS offers a low price guarantee too with daily and weekly handicapped van sales. Mention ICDRI and receive an additional $250.00 OFF! Call 1.800.775.VANS (8267) TODAY!
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