Special Forces Association Chapter 54

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Foreign Weapons
Familiarization Course - 2017

The 3rd Annual Foreign Weapons Familiarization Course hosted by Chapter 54 took place in 24-25 June 2017 at the Ayer Gun and Sportsman's Club on a Saturday and Sunday. The weather was favorable and some great instruction was provided by Vinny Pestilli and his instructors. In attendence were at least 47 chapter members with friends and family members.

Participants Foreign Weapons Familiarization Course Chapter 54 SFA June 2017
Just a few of the 47 participants and instructors of the Chapter 54
3rd Annual Foreign Weapons Familiarization Course held in June 2017

The Ayer Gun and Sportsman's Club, located at 255 Snake Hll Road, in Ayer, Massachusetts was very generous in their support and hospitality - providing the range, classroom facilities, and preparing a Saturday evening barbecue.

Chapter 54 Foreign Weapons Familiarization Course 2017
Range at the Ayer Gun and Sportsman's Club used by Chapter 54 for the
Foreign Weapons Familiarization Course held in June 2017

Vincent Pestilli, President of the Eleven Bravo Training Company, of Brownville, Maine provided over 70 weapons for display of which at least 30 were fired on the range. He also provided the ammunition. Vinni had six instructors on hand as well as three support staff.

The days started with coffee and doughnuts and a few hours of classroom instruction on the various types of weapons to be fired. There were lots of European and Russian weapons on hand including pistols, rifles, sniper rifles, submachine guns, machine guns, and RPGs. A short lunch break (Subway sandwiches arranged by Chapter 54) was followed by shooting on the range.

The following weapons were on display:

AK-47 Rifles, AK-74 Rifles, SKS Carbine, Soviet 1944 Carbine, Dragunov (SVD) Sniper Rifle,  Russian 91/30 Sniper Rifle, RPK Light Machine Gun, Russian RPG.7, Russian AKS-74U Krinkov, Russian PM Makarov Pistol 9MM, Russian RPD-7.62 x 39 Belt Fed, Russian T.T.30/33, Tokarev, Russian Nagant Revolver, Yugoslav M.76 Sniper Rifle, Russian PKM. Machine Gun Belt Fed, Czech 52/57 Carbine, AK-100 Series Rifles, Saiga AK-47 Shotgun 12 gauge, Romanian FPK/PSL Sniper Rifle, Hungarian AMD. 63,65,69 AK-47, H&K MP5 Navy, H&K PDW, H&K MP5 Brief Case, H&K MP-5, H&K MP5SD, H&K USP 45 Pistol, H&K SOCOM MK23 45 Cal Pistol with Sound Suppressor, H&K VP9, VP40, P30 Pistols, H&K 45 Compact Tactical, and FAL 308 Cal Sniper Rifle.

The following weapons were fired on the range:

Russian SVD Sniper Rifle (s), Russian 91/30 Sniper Rifle, Russian AK47-7.62, Russian AK47 5.45, Russian AK100 New Series 5.56 NATO, Russian Krinkov SMG 7.62 & 5.56, Russian PKM Belt Fed 7.62, Russian AK47 Shotgun 12 Gauge, Russian PPSH41 SMG 7.62, Israeli Galil AK 5.56 223 Cal., H&K MP5 9MM,H&K MP5 Navy 9MM, H&K MP5 PDW 9MM, H&K MP5 9MM Brief case Demo by Vinny Pestilli, Russian Makarov Pistol 9MM Russian Cal., German Sniper Rifle 308 Cal., Benelli Tactical Shotgun (s0 12Ga., Thompson M1A1 SMG 45 Cal., H&K VP 9MM Pistol, and H&K SOCOM mk23 45 Cal.

The "Hatman" (Kevin Casey) had some hats for sale, the Chapter Treasurer (George Durfee) was successful in selling the 25th Anniversary Chapter 54 Coin, and Kevin Paicos conducted a weapons (9 total) raffle to raise money for the Chapter 54 Scholarship Program.

Members from SFA Chapters 48 and 72 also attended.

Read more about this fun-filled and educational weekend in
"Foreign Weapons Familiarization Course - Chapter 54 Special Forces Association"
SOF News, July 14, 2017


LTC William F. Buckley
Memorial Chapter

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