After completing his training as a Pilot and Aircraft Mechanic at Grand Rapids School of the Bible & Music and serving as a staff flight instructor Gary was recruited by Missionary Flights International for service in Haiti and other needy island countries.
After serving as a DC3 Pilot & Mechanic with MFI for 12 years Gary, His wife Cheryl and their 2 children returned to the Grand Rapids area. He worked for a time as a charter pilot before He began a second career with Grand Rapids Fire Dept. as a Firefighter, Fire Equipment Operator and Medical First Responder.
Gary began teaching firearms classes in 2011 and is certified in several disciplines with the NRA and the United States Concealed Carry Association. He also enjoys competing in defensive pistol and Cowboy action shooting and hunting. Additionally, Gary is the Director of Safety & Security at his local Church and is called on to consult with other Churches developing safety ministries.
Gary retired from GRFD in 2015 and began working at Barracks 616 in 2016. He has a passion for teaching and strives to enhance his instructing abilities through further training.
United States Concealed Carry Association Certified Instructor
Concealed Carry & Home Defense
Defensive Shooting Fundamentals I & II
Countering the Mass Shooter Threat
National Rifle Association Certified Instructor
Personal Protection in the Home
Personal Protection Outside the Home
MAG 40 (Legal use of deadly force) Masaad Ayoob
ICE “Intuitive Defensive Shooting” Rob Pincus
M & P Armorer
Bad Day Industries
Tactical Emergency Casualty Care
Church Responder Training
Michigan State Police “Security Issues in Places of Worship”
Sheepdog Seminars (Church Security) Col. Dave Grossman
2TheRescue Church Security Team Training
Kent County Sheriff Dept. “Civilian Response to Active Shooter Events”