“We are offering free LTC classes for our friends in the LGBT community to show them our support in the wake of the tragedy in Orlando, FL” read the Shiloh Shooting’s facebook page, posted at 11:10 PM on June 14th. The phone lines melted, the voicemail inbox filled up, and their email server crashed. By the next day at 2:39 PM, they had to make a follow up post: “Due to overwhelming demand we have filled the two classes we initially offered. Because of the outpouring from the community we have opened several new classes. If you called and left a message or sent an email please call us at (281) 444-8930 as we can’t access our voicemail due to the volume of calls and our email server has crashed due to the number of emails. Sorry for the inconvenience and thank you for all your support!!!”
Over 300 people from the gay and lesbian and communities showed up for the series of free classes at the Houston, TX, range.
Click 2 Houston ran an initial story on June 14th:
One look at his hole-filled paper target and you can see Ryan Thomas is a great shot. He has had his concealed handgun license for two years. Thomas also happens to be gay.
After Sunday’s shooting, he had an idea. He wanted to make sure his LGBT brothers and sisters were protected.
Thomas talked to his friends at the Shiloh Gun Range in northwest Harris County. They are offering free CHL classes to the LGBT community.
Jeff Sanford, the owner of Shiloh Indoor Shooting Range said, “We want to make them aware they can come here, they can feel safe here, they can get their concealed handgun license or their license to carry and they can carry a gun and they can feel good about it.”
“We wanted to reach out to them and say hey, we might not totally understand what’s going on, but we feel for you and this is what we can do to help you out,” Thomas said.
They then ran a follow up story on June 22nd:
It was a unique offer by the Shiloh Shooting Range in northwest Harris County, just days after the shooting at the Pulse Nightclub in Orlando. Shiloh offered free gun classes to the LGBT community and hundreds of people responded.
“We learned gun safety,” said Jared Anthony. “We learned that it’s not … it’s a big responsibility. If you do carry, it’s something that you do need to take seriously. You are providing … you’re providing a service to the community really.”
Anthony was one of the more than 300 people who responded to Shiloh’s offer of free concealed carry classes. The calls kept coming.
“They’re not necessarily what we’ve been told and we’re not necessarily what they’ve been told,” said Shiloh owner Jeff Sanford.
He said the classes broke barriers. In the first class, he said 60 of 62 who signed up showed up. He said that was a record for a free class.
Apparently Shiloh Shooting is planning on doing more of these, as their website reads “WE offer our prayers and support to the LGBT community, and classes to those interested in taking this new CHL class please call 281-444-8930”