We had a full group of 10 shooters for the NRA Basic Pistol course this past Sunday. Andrew Still, who recently put himself through the NRA Basic Pistol Instructor course, joined me on the range and led most of the classroom discussion. This was Andrew's first time teaching, and he did a tremendous job!
While a few students were taking the course as a refresher or to satisfy a requirement for an out-of-state weapons permit, most of the shooters were completely new to firearms. Five shooters had never even held a firearm prior to taking the course, and one actually said she was there under duress. The class hosted a wide variety of ages and occupations, but the common them among everyone attending was a willingness to learn and a commitment to safety.
The day went off without a hitch except for a small medical issue (our first) that developed when a shooter trapped the pad of her thumb between the hammer and the frame of a single action revolver. A surprising amount of blood flow from the wound caused a small delay. To give her credit, the student wrapped up her thumb and then came right back to the range, where she was tearing a single ragged hole with a friend's 9mm in spite of a triple layer of gauze. She definitely received a gold star for bravery (and marksmanship).
My thanks to all of the students who attended, and for our volunteer photographer. It was a great day and I was happy to meet another great group of new shooters. Best of luck to everyone.