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Gunfighter Moment – Mike Pannone

What are you willing to do to protect your loved ones?

I was helping a good friend teach a group of mostly women from his prosecutor’s office and a woman who is an avid long distance runner and spends a lot of time training mentioned she carries “sometimes”. My response was “why sometimes and not all the time?” She said if she was out with her kids she would carry to protect them but didn’t carry when she was by herself. That led to a little discussion as we waited for the break to end and in a nutshell here it is.

If someone were maliciously about to do something that would grievously injure virtually everyone that you know and love especially your immediate family

…and if it that injury was painful beyond words and lasted until the day they died?

…and if nothing either doctor or hospital could do to heal them?

…what would you be willing to do to stop them?

If someone beats, rapes or murders you, you alone feel the physical pain but the anguish is shared by everyone you love for their lifetime. If you are killed your children will always wonder what life would be like if mom were there or cry at their weddings because you were not there to share the joy. Your husband would wonder what that dream vacation with the kids would have been like or how you would have grown old together and spoiled the grandkids. Your family would mourn silently every time there was a gathering with the most obvious presence being your absence.

So if it is a way to explain to a friend or family member why you carry, why you train so much and why they should, then enlighten them. Explain to them that you carry to protect yourself and by doing so the emotions of everyone that your life touches in a significant way if you were prematurely taken. Imagine all the pain you could save by successfully fending off an attack? Remember as well the person trying to deprive you of your life and by doing so injure all those you hold dear brought it to you! Turn it around on him, turn fear into anger and fight with the savagery of a lion. He might have started the clock but you stop it! Do not be afraid to do whatever it takes to stop the attacker, to protect yourself and by default your loved ones. You owe it to your family and friends. Be loyal and steadfast and defend yourself with courage and righteous indignation just as you would them if they were there with you.

In the immediacy you will fight for your life alone but in your actions you hold the emotional weight of many potentially injured souls…those that love you. Remember, nobody is more concerned for the well being of you and yours than you!! If that fateful day comes it is your responsibility to be prepared in advance physically and emotionally and be equipped and trained properly.

What am I willing to do to protect my loved ones? Whatever it takes!

– Mike Pannone


Mike Pannone retired from the Army’s premier assault force (1st SFOD-D) after an explosive breaching injury. A year after his retirement America was attacked on 9/11 and he returned to help serve his country as the head marksmanship instructor at the Federal Air Marshals training course and then moved to help stand up the FAMS Seattle field office. In 2003 he left the FAMS to serve as a PSD detail member and then a detail leader for the State Department during 2003 and 2004 in Baghdad and Tikrit.

In 2005 he served as a ground combat advisor of the Joint Counter IED Task Force and participated on combat operations with various units in Al Anbar province. Upon returning he gave IED awareness briefings to departing units and helped stand up a pre-Iraq surge rifle course with the Asymmetric Warfare Group as a lead instructor. With that experience as well as a career of special operations service in Marine Reconnaissance, Army Special Forces and JSOC to draw from he moved to the private sector teaching planning, leadership, marksmanship and tactics as well as authoring and co-authoring several books such as The M4 Handbook, AK Handbook and Tactical Pistol shooting. Mike also consults for several major rifle and accessory manufacturers to help them field the best possible equipment to the warfighter, law enforcement officer and upstanding civilian end user. He is considered a subject matter expert on the AR based Stoner platform in all its derivatives.

Gunfighter Moment is a weekly feature brought to you by Alias Training & Security Services. Each week Alias brings us a different Trainer and in turn they offer some words of wisdom.

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15 Responses to “Gunfighter Moment – Mike Pannone

  1. BradKAF308 says:

    Sounds like a good puplic service message.

  2. BradKAF308 says:

    If the women of Afghan carried under thier burqas would the taliban have gotten to power?

  3. Ipkiss says:

    On that matter: Yesterday, a Dutch soldier lost his job defending his wife. The woman was harassed during a night out, at which the soldier punched the harasser on his nose. He was convicted for severe maltreatment and because of that his certificate of good behaviour, a requirement for every soldier, was expired.

    • BradKAF308 says:

      That is so F’d! We as a govt & a country expect you to be violent for us, a bunch of strangers you have no personal attachment to. But heavens to betsy if you do it for someone you have such a personal connection with. Yea maybe there are some other extenuating circumstance, but I’ll give a soldier a little leeway due to thier training.

    • Billy says:

      Sounds like he should have used a clandestine throat punch!

  4. Billy says:

    Good stuff.

    But the real issue IMO is…

    Do you carry in-accordance with the law…

    Or do you carry at all times, regardless of jurisdictional law, and rely on being tried by 12 rather than carried by 6, or worse, a family member is the victim?

    Regardless, it’s a crap shoot in today’s political environment.

    • Bushman says:

      Speaking of accordance with law – I know some people from countries, where they are not allowed to defend themselves, who do carry all the time they visiting dangerous places and who do not rely on six of twelve – they are just ready (or thinking they are) to fight to the end and then to do their best to avoid being caught.

    • Bill says:

      Dangerous territory: what makes us different than the Sudans and Somalias is the rule of law. I’ve probably bent weapons laws in the past, but that “tried by 12” line is tired, and actively promotes jury nullification, which is both illegal and contrary the basic principle of our legal system being based on a drafted Constitution.

      If you want to change the law, there’s a process for that that has worked very well over the past decade. If you want to violate the law, there’s a process that goes along with that, too.

      • Bushman says:

        That’s right, dangerous territory.

        But if things already went that far in some countries – it means, most people there just hiding their heads in the sand, like those ostrich birds. So, some minority have no ability to change anything, at least – legally. Some of these people are moving out of their countries – for example, I know Dutch people who moved to Switzerland or Czech Republic (they had and still have one of the best gun law in whole Europe).

        I’ve told about that not to show the example how to be law-disobedient, but to tell, how far things could go if majority of people is ignorant and hoplophobic.

        • Bill says:

          Concur, but there are elements in the U.S.A who have an incredibly unrealistic view of where we are today vis a vis gun laws and regulations, who seem to look for any excuse to panic and claim is out to get us. That, plus the fact that our violent crime rate is the lowest it’s been in decades, there’s just no reasoned thought.

          I’ve also risked what would have been very unpleasant jail time in other countries that have far more draconian laws, and violent crime, by carrying there.

          • Bushman says:

            The balance is always the most important thing.

            Fortunately, I haven’t spent my time in Dutch or British jail, but people who have been arrested in Netherlands told, that it looks like retirement facility there. So it could be more obvious choice between being killed by addicted robber or to visit Dutch jail, for example.

            While if we’ll talk about other, more extreme places like Russia, the effectiveness of corrupted police is so low there, therefore you will very unlikely be arrested if will not report yourself.

            Different places – different circumstances.

  5. Bushman says:

    Some people just can’t start to be consequent in things they do until they will face the real danger.
    They have to feel the stronger fear than they feeling when making choice to carry or not to do that.

    And god bless the American culture, because in Europe (especially in countries, most proud of their “democracy” and “respect of human rights”) self-defense will not be a good reason not to find you guilty in illegal carry and use of gun or knife.

  6. Jason says:

    I think part of what she may have meant was “I don’t like to carry while running because running shorts don’t carry holsters well.”

    Belly Band or PT-1/PT-2 may be useful in those situations.

    Fanny pack or Hill People Gear chest rig might work either.

  7. Dave says:

    What does Mike shoot? ( upper/lower-Trigger…) Thanks!