We (me, the wife, and our 12 y/o son and 8 y/o daughter (the baby tagged along too) went to the range the other day. Our main objective was just to let the kids shoot my son's .22 Rossi single shot and to introduce our daughter into shooting (she never had before).
While grabbing items out of the gun safe I see my old S&W model 586. My very first pistol I ever carried as a law enforcement officer. So blue and shiney and so worth attention and love. So I figure what the heck? I'll grab it and a box of .38 and a box of .357 and give that girl a whirl too.
So off we go to the range. We got targets, hearing protection for everyone and the Rossi .22 single shot and plenty of .22 ammo. The S&W 586 and 2 boxes of ammo for that. And I like to run about 50 rounds through my Glock 22 (my main carry gun since '92 or so (I can't remember) every other month, so that's coming too. As well as my wifes Glock 17.
We get to the range and the kids are shooting and having fun and I am the proud father. Now it's time for mom and dad to shoot. My wife runs a course with her G17 and burns 50 rounds. Now it's time for dad to shoot and have fun. So I run a similar course to what I had set up for my wife. 3yrds, 7yrds, 15 yrds, and 25 yrds. I am feeling like the Master! My kids like to shoot, I have a wife that shoots....it's a family affair!
I get my trusty S&W 586 which I carried on my hip for 2 years before transitioning to the Glock. I set up a new target, I load speed loaders, I get on the line and I CAN'T HIT A DARN THING WITH IT! 6 rounds and not even one single X ring hit from 7 YARDS! I was all over the place! I tried again. 6 rounds, no time limit, 7 yards. 2 X rings and 4 close ones.
Moral of the story.......MARKSMANSHIP IS A PERISHABLE SKILL FOLKS!!! I carried that 586 for two years on the street. Won the top gun award on the department two years running with it. 16 years later I can't hit crap with it. And literally other than an annual cleaning and oiling for storage, I have not handled that revolver for 16 years.
I was VERY shocked by this! Very, very shocked. My personal carry weapon is the G22, has been for the past 16 years or so. At the job I have now (Nuclear Security) we carry the G17, so the difference between work and personal carry is not an issue for me. But to pick up a gun that in your mind and memory that you were "The Man" with back in the day and not be able to hit the broad side of a barn with it is very staggeringly humbling.
I cleaned my blued, shiney 586 and put it back in the safe where it will live out its days! I have learned a very valuable lesson and will not take for granted that lesson. Marksmanship is a perishable skill!