One of those sad stories with a happy ending

Late last year, shortly after the end of hunting season, my co-worker, Ron, went on vacation for the holidays. When he returned home, he found that he had been robbed. Namely, robbed of all of his firearms.

The thieving bastards knew exactly what they wanted and brought their tools along with them. They basically just cut Ron’s safe off of the wall with a sawz-all type power tool and handtrucked his safe right out the garage door.

Normally, these would be circumstances that would get your blood boiling, but when I tell you that his son’s first hunting rifle was in the safe, a Winchester Model 70 in .270 Win, ready to be given to him for his birthday in February, you might want to throw something. Don’t, it is bad form. Just wait until the next time you get a criminal in your possession and kick him one extra time, OK?

And this is where a very nice lady named Barb comes into the story.

I met Barb of the Righty in a Lefty State blog in the comments section over at the Heartless Libertarian’s blog. I mentioned that since he was moving to the Puget Sound area, he might want to come to one of the Blogger Blastoramas I like to organize and she was surprised to find yet another righty blogger in the area.

I posted shortly thereafter about the Rifle-e Postal Match and she wrote about how she hadn’t been to the range for a few years. She said that neither her or her husband had shot their rifles since they moved to Washington a few years back and that he was even thinking of selling the rifles.

I issued twenty lashes with a wet noodle to each of them, plus another twenty to her husband for thinking of selling his guns. I then asked what the guns were, mostly because, well, I like to buy firearms.

They were all Ruger Model 77’s, one each in 6mm Remington, .22-250 Remington, .270 Winchester and .300 Winchester Magnum and the price they were asking for each of them was quite fair.

As soon as I read that she had a .270 and a .300WM for sale, I spoke to Ron to see if he had gotten around to replacing the guns he had stolen. He and I had spoke before when he first started looking but I never heard if he was successful in getting his rifles replaced.

Turns out that he hadn’t, so I told him about Barb’s offer and he said that he was interested, which I related to Barb and asked if we could meet up or if she had any pictures of them. Both her and her husband were busy getting ready to go on vacation so a meet up wasn’t doable that week, but she did have pictures to send, which I showed to Ron the next morning.

After looking at the pictures I decided that I was interested in the .22-250, but that I’d have to wait a couple weeks until after I bought a very necessary safe, my old one being full. I made mention of this to Ron. However, Ron decided that he was going to throw a wrench into the mix.

He decided after hearing I was wanting the .22-250 that he also wanted the 6mm for his daughter, who will start hunting in 2006. He wanted me to ask Barb if there was some kind of package deal she could work out with her husband if we took all four guns at once. Turns out that there was.

Now, I can’t tell you how good of a deal Barb and her husband cut Ron and I, mostly because y’all would probably flood her email box asking if she has anything else for sale, so let’s just say I decided I could wait another week for my safe.

Barb and I figured out a time and a place to meet up so that I could give the rifles a final inspection. When she rolled up, I helped her get the rifles into the range office and I took a look at them. Other than a bump here and there from 30 years worth of hunting, these guns were as nice as the day they came off the rack. The bores all checked out well and the safeties worked so the money changed hands.

I bought Barb a Coke and we sat and chatted for a while as I filled my new rear rifle rest bag with #8 lead shot. Very nice lady, I must say indeed, which is why she now sits in my links section.

I’ll most likely be delivering the three rifles to Ron sometime next weekend since he was out of town this weekend and our employer would fire the both of us if I handed them over at work.

I have no doubt that he will be happy, his son will be even happier and that his daughter will be downright ecstatic later this year when she unwraps her very own boltie under the Christmas tree.

How’s that for a happy ending?

Congrats Ron and thank you very much Barb and husband.

BTW, here is my Ruger Model 77 MK I with the heavy sport barrel (manufactured in 1973)

22250.jpg

I would have shot my new rifle that day but my shoulder is still a bit liquid from the shotgun match and I knew I would be a total flinch-monkey.

To add to the happy endinginess of this story, on the way home with the rifles I stopped into my local firearms retailer for a box of ammo for the new gun and found the exact safe I had been thinking of buying from a store that sells only safes.

Even better, the shop wanted $140 less than the other guy did and I put 25% down on it.

And if you want even more happiness, this store had an original Series 70 Colt Combat Commander in 45ACP for half a steal. After coming home and checking the finances, I’ll be going there tomorrow afternoon and putting 20% down on that as well.

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3 Responses to One of those sad stories with a happy ending

  1. Morenuancedthanyou says:

    I’m sorry to hear about your co-worker’s bitter loss.
    I do not have a gun safe yet, but when I get one, it looks like it is going to be bolted to a concrete floor.
    Dan Day

  2. Rivrdog says:

    Very noble deed you did, sir.

    A word of warning to those who have their gun safes in the garage: make plans to move it into the house.

    You can alarm your house, but almost no garages are alarmed, and what’s more, a burglary in a garage may not merit the same punishment as a burglary in a house (in OR, any burglary involving firearms is a Class A 20-year felony though).

    There are companies that specialize in moving gun safes around inside a house. My suggestion is to put the safe in a closet somewhere in the house, preferably on the second floor. The closet can then have it’s own alarm added so that anyone opening the closet door will set off the alarm. This is especially useful if you have frequent guests, or teenage children who have frequent guests.

    Anyone who builds a new house should get the builder to armor the closet that will be the gun room. Armoring can be done by anyone with decent DIY skills also. This is easily done by building a double-wall of greenboard and pouring concrete in between the walls. A locking steel rollup door instead of the bifold doors fills out the ideal gun closet plans. When the safe is installed, put steel bushings that spin loosely over the lagscrews. That way, anyone trying to use a sawzall to cut the screws will only hit a spinning bushing.

  3. Barb says:

    It was great to get to actually MEET another gun-loving Washington blogger. I look forward to joining you guys sometime at a blogshoot so that I can meet more folks :-)

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