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Meet Lance Thomas. Good read.

Discussion in 'General Gun Discussions' started by jsalcedo, Mar 12, 2004.

  1. jsalcedo

    jsalcedo Senior Member

    Dec 31, 2002
    Found this on the newsgroups

    In 2001, Paladin Press published one of the best "reads" of the year
    for people who follow the gun culture and understand the principles of
    self-protection. The author is Paul Kirchner, who has collaborated
    with Col. Jeff Cooper on previous books, and the title is The
    Deadliest Men: The World's Deadliest Combatants Through the Ages. It
    covers figures as disparate as the French swordswoman known as La
    Maupin, such great American war heroes as Alvin York and Audie Murphy;
    gunfighters like Wild Bill Hickok and Bat Masterson, and a man named
    Lance Thomas.

    Over a period of less than 3 years, Thomas was involved in four gun
    battles against a total of 11 known suspects. He shot six of them,
    killing five. The watch dealer himself was wounded on two of these
    occasions, taking a total of five rounds. There are many lessons that
    the rest of us can learn: Lessons of long-term strategy and short-term
    tactics; of gun selection and ammunition effectiveness; and, above
    all, of courage under fire in the moment, and of determination over
    the long haul.

    August 10, 1989.

    Like so many storekeepers, Thomas feels his watch shop would be a
    safer place if he had a gun with which to fend off armed robbers. He
    has acquired a Model 36, a five-shot Smith & Wesson .38 Chief Special.
    He keeps the snubnose revolver where he can reach it easily. On this
    day, he'll be glad he did.Two men enter. One appears to have some sort
    of weapon, and the other pulls what Thomas recognizes as a 9mm
    semiautomatic pistol. Thomas knows he can just give the man his money
    and goods, but he also knows that to do so is to trust his life to the
    whim of a violent man unlawfully wielding a deadly weapon. Instead,
    Thomas chooses to fight.His hand flashes to the Chief Special, and he
    comes up shooting. The little revolver barks three times. Two of his
    bullets miss, but one smashes into the gunman's face, putting him out
    of the fight. The merchant swings toward the accomplice, but cannot
    see a weapon at the moment, and so, does not fire. Instead, he orders
    the suspect to leave. The now-compliant accomplice does so, dragging
    his wounded comrade with him. The robber will survive. Lance Thomas is
    unhurt. His decision to be an armed citizen, to fight back, has been
    validated. The wounded robber will be charged, and the armed citizen
    has the sympathy of the authorities. Thomas has won in every respect.

    In assessing the aftermath, the Rolex specialist analyzes what he has
    learned with the same precision he applies to the repair and
    adjustment of fine watches. It is not lost on him that he has expended
    60 percent of his ammunition to neutralize 50 percent of his
    antagonists. It occurs to him that a single five-shot revolver might
    not be enough if there's a next time, and that there won't be much
    opportunity to reload.And what if he had been caught out of reach of
    his Smith? Thomas expands his defensive strategy. The .38 is joined by
    a trio of .357 Magnum revolvers: a Colt Python, a Smith & Wesson Model
    19 Combat Magnum, and a Ruger Security-Six. He arrays them a few feet
    apart within the small perimeter of his workspace so there will always
    be one within reach no matter where he's standing.If he runs dry, he
    won't even think about reloading: he'll simply drop the empty gun and
    grab another fully loaded one.

    Professional Hit

    November 27, 1989.

    This time, it's the kind of professional hit that the NYPD Stakeout
    Squad warned you about-- a five-man team of thugs who know what
    they're doing. There's seeded backup, a perpetrator ambling around on
    the sidewalk outside, pretending to be a passerby. The outrider is in
    the driver's seat of the getaway car, at once a wheelman and a
    potential killer who can murderously interdict responding officers, or
    go inside with heavy weapons to rescue accomplices who are captured
    inside the premises. The remaining three perpetrators comprise the
    raid team.It opens hot, fast and ugly. One of the perpetrators opens
    up on Lance Thomas without warning, firing a semiautomatic pistol,
    hitting him four times with eight rounds fired. Three of the .25 ACP
    bullets bite into Thomas' right shoulder, a fourth into his neck. The
    watchmaker grabs the nearest revolver, the Ruger .357, missing with
    the first shot but scoring with the next five.The gunman falls to the
    floor and so does the Security-Six: it has clicked empty. Thomas drops
    it, lunging for the next nearest weapon, the snubnose .38 that had
    saved him last time.Now he engages the second suspect, who is shooting
    at him. Thomas shoots back. That gun, too, runs dry. He hasn't hit his
    antagonist, but he hasn't been hit either, and the second robber is in
    no mood to continue the gunfight.The third inside suspect opens fire
    at Thomas. Wounded, but furious and still in the fight, the
    storekeeper grabs his third gun of the shootout, another .357. As Paul
    Kirchner relates it, he "empties it into" the third gunman. That
    offender goes down.The little watch shop is filled with the stench of
    smokeless powder and the reek of blood. The second offender wants no
    more of being shot at, and has abjured from the conflict.Outside, the
    two additional robbers realize that three of their colleagues have
    gone inside for an easy score, there has been a long volley of
    explosive gunfire, and only one has come back out alive. Whatever is
    in there, they don't want any part of it. The three surviving robbers

    Inside, only one of the combatants is standing. Bleeding but defiant,
    the wounded Lance Thomas looks down at the two men he has killed. In
    the course of the fight, he has fired 19 shots. Charmed Life. Some people
    are beginning to think that Thomas bears a charmed life. Since an
    enemy sent into ignominious retreat can certainly be said to have been
    vanquished, the score now stands at Lance Thomas 7, Armed Robbers
    0.However, it occurs to the storekeeper that his survival armory might
    need another firepower upgrade. This time, he decides to try
    semiautomatic pistols. He buys four, all SIGs, that operate the same
    way. One is the compact nine-shot P-225 9mm. The other three are
    assorted versions of the P-220 8-shot .45 auto.As the Turning Point
    cameras pan across his gun collection, we see the American-style of
    SIG with push-button magazine release as well as the European-style
    with the butt heel mag release. There is a Browning BDA, which is a
    European P-220 by a different name.Magazine release styles don't
    matter. Lance Thomas still doesn't plan to reload. If one gun runs
    dry, he'll reach for another. He now has up to eight handguns readily
    available. Fully loaded, they hold 56 rounds between them.With his
    plan, they all function essentially the same: grab gun, index weapon
    on target, pull trigger until it stops shooting, grab additional guns,
    repeat as necessary. Thomas commits himself to constant practice in
    accessing one or another of his defense guns from any conceivable

    Two Year Break

    December 4, 1991.

    It has been more than two years since the last incident. Some others
    would be complacent by now. Not Lance Thomas, who has learned that
    vigilance equals survival, and from the beginning has realized he is
    responsible for the safety of his customers.On this date a male
    perpetrator strides in, accompanied by a female accomplice who shows
    no weapon. The man pulls a loaded Glock pistol. He points the gun at
    Thomas and orders him to be motionless.No way. Thomas goes for his
    gun.The perpetrator fires first, pumping a 9mm bullet through Thomas'
    neck, drilling a wound channel that is just a fraction of an inch from
    being fatal. But now, Thomas has reached his rarest pistol, the little
    P225, and he is firing back.The watch shop proprietor has been forced
    into an awkward hold on the gun, and he can only fire three rounds--
    all straight into the chest of his opponent-- before his imperfect
    grasp causes the usually reliable SIG 9mm to jam. Without missing a
    beat, he drops it and grabs one of its big brothers, which he fires
    into the opponent five more times until the armed robber falls and
    stops trying to commit murder.Frozen in terror, the female accomplice
    offers no violence. It's over.Wounded, Lance Thomas will recover. Not
    so the criminal who shot him, who will die of the eight rounds-- all
    hits, eight for eight-- that the armed citizen has inflicted with his
    two SIG-Sauer pistols.

    Ever Vigilant

    February 20,1992.

    It has been just over two and a half months since the last shootout.
    Lance Thomas has remained vigilant. Now, his wariness pays off.

    Two armed perpetrators enter the store. As soon as Thomas sees the
    automatic pistol in one of their hands, he reflexes to his nearest
    pistol, one of the P-220s. This perpetrator goes down fast, hit with
    what author Kirchner describes as most of a "gunload" of .45 ACP
    ammunition. Grabbing another P-220, Thomas engages the second armed
    robbery suspect and shoots him four times. The suspect falls. The
    danger is over. Both armed robbers are dead at the shopowner's hands.
    In four gun battles, Lance Thomas has fired 40-plus shots. He has
    killed five men, and wounded another. He has defeated a total of 11
    perpetrators, either shot down or driven off in abject flight. He has
    been wounded five times.

    Word On The Street

    By now the word was out on the street. Some of those who had died by
    the blazing Thomas guns had been members of the organized street gangs
    that infest Los Angeles like an advanced, spreading cancer. They had
    declared war. They were going to rake Lance Thomas' watch shop with
    drive-by shootings and massacre his customers for revenge. The armed
    citizen had to make a difficult decision. Thomas had stood up to the
    armed criminals for some 29 months. He was ready to continue to risk
    his own life, however, he felt he had no right to risk the lives of
    customers and bystanders in the face of this latest threat.
    Reluctantly, sadly, he switched to business by mail order and
    Internet. The watch shop was closed. The big Rolex sign that some
    believed had attracted the robbers like flies came down. Lance Thomas
    moved. The epoch of a modern urban gunfighter had ended.
  2. jsalcedo

    jsalcedo Senior Member

    Dec 31, 2002

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