Major Joe Featherston, USMCR, Ret. recently underwent training with active duty Marine marksmen at Parris Island.  We asked if he would be willing to share his experience as it is an excellent reminder of how important trigger time and even outside training are for firearms ownership.

Thank you to Major Featherston for the following write-up:

On one of the very rare occasions these days, I had the opportunity to return to my ‘roots’ by doing some innovative shooting on the pistol range at MCRD Parris Island where I first fired a Colt .45 for familiarization as a recruit back in 1956. About a dozen men were invited to participate in a one-day training course that covered all of the requirements for a South Carolina Concealed Weapons Permit and was enhanced by a program for all shooters including those already CWP licensed. Although most civilian shooters would likely not utilize most of these elements, it was a great course for the experience.

The program, taught by highly experienced, active duty Marine marksmen, covered a number of subjects including:

Info on concealed weapons

Laws regarding concealed weapons

Situations when and when not to use a weapon


Grip and stance


Trigger Control

Combat pistol positions

Different types of carries

Tactical & Speed reloading

Practical applications of the above

Safety Brief for Live Fire

Shooting Positions with facades

Target grouping exercises at various distances from 3 yards to 15 yards

State Department Qualifications

Shooting with various facades:


                Kneeling around corners strong and weak hand

                Lying down positions

                Seated strong hand

                Driver seat out of window

                Shooting over the car hood

                Clearing one floor of a house (combinations of all stations)

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