Thank you to everyone who made the time to come by my book signings or stopped me on the floor to say hello. It is humbling that the novels are resonating with so many people, particularly in a community that has been so good to me and my family both in and out of uniform.
My first SHOT Show was in 2004. I was in Virginia Beach at the time when my Teammate, Mark Owen, called me from Vegas to say I had to get out there to check out SHOT Show. I was on a plane that night. Back in 2004 SHOT looked much different. The entire “tactical” side of the show could almost fit in one of the larger booths today. It has been interesting to see it grow and evolve over the last fifteen years. I missed a few due to deployments or training but made the majority of them. I was a “gear guy” before I entered the military, was a “gear guy” during my time in the Teams, and am still a “gear guy” today. I always wanted my platoons to go downrange with the latest and greatest equipment available and SHOT Show was the place to find out if the private sector was working on anything that could possibly give us an edge against the enemy.
It was very natural for the gear I used in the SEAL Teams and continue to use today to find their way into the pages of my books. I use gear, equipment, and weapons to develop my characters. Just like all those who have walked the warrior’s path, I can tell a lot about someone not just by what they wear but how they wear it; shoes, pants, belt, pistol, blade and how they are worn all tell a story. To have come full circle and be signing books that contain the gear from the companies I’ve been connected to all of my adult life in their booth’s at SHOT Show is surreal.