What was your “oh sh-t” moment while in the military?

Mudassir Ali
Feb 25, 2020 01:34 PM 0 Answers
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Mudassir Ali
- Feb 25, 2020 01:34 PM

regularly had to visit Belfast city, from my base in Omagh, Usually I would be taken by undercover van (a plain civilian style van with no military markings), and dropped either at one of the barracks or police station. Where I would then head off into the City in civilian clothes, I had permission to have long hair and often wore regular civilian clothes, jeans, leather jacket etc. I however always carried a 9mm pistol in a shoulder holster under my jacket, for personal protection.

One of these days started fine but as we approached the drop off point we realised that we couldn’t pull into the Police station compound as usual, as there was a nearby incident, so I was dropped off about 400m away, and I headed towards the Police station on foot. The Police station has look out towers with armed Officers watching the entrances, Police and Military were regularly attacked and shootings were common, so these Officers are vigilant. Anyway I had walked the 400m and was just approaching the main entrance to the Police station when I felt something move under my jacket. My shoulder holster buckle had chosen this very time to give way, and with horror I felt my pistol fall, and despite my best efforts I was unable to stop the pistol from dropping to the floor and rattling across the pavement. In that instant I had my oh-shit moment, what do I do? Here I was dressed in jeans and jacket, looking anything but armed military, and there was my pistol lying in plain view on the floor. Do I bend down and pick up the pistol? To the lookouts I would appear as an armed civilian right outside a station, and at this time attacks on Police were common.

Very slowly I pulled my Id from my pocket and raised it , hoping that the guards would realise I was not showing any hostile intent as I slowly picked up the pistol. The whole time, expecting to be shot!

Once the pistol was back secure, I entered the Police station to be met by the local Sergeant who with typical Irish humour suggested I join them in the bar as I owed them a few pints. Thankfully when the lookouts saw the gun on the pavement, rather than opening fire had radioed this info, and the Sargeant looking at the video monitors had recognised me and had prevented me from being shot.

I spent that evening in the bar sharing the great Irish hospitality, and yes more than a few beers were downed.

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