The Firing Line Forums

Go Back   The Firing Line Forums > The Conference Center > General Discussion Forum

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old December 17, 2012, 02:44 PM   #1
Senior Member
Join Date: January 12, 2010
Posts: 198
I need a myth put down.

Some one I know has been saying that they where allowed to take their weapons with them when they left the military.

Now I could be wrong, but some this sounds a little far fetched.
It sounds like someone who is looking for a silly excuse....

Is there any possibility that this is true?
Morgoroth is offline  
Old December 17, 2012, 02:48 PM   #2
Senior Member
Join Date: July 29, 2010
Location: The ATL (OTP)
Posts: 3,548
How old is this person? While I am not sure it was “allowed” I think years ago it did happen. I know a friend’s Grandfather kept a sidearm or at least that was the story. I am pretty sure it is not allowed now days, but who knows what might happen.
A major source of objection to a free economy is precisely that it ... gives people what they want instead of what a particular group thinks they ought to want. Underlying most arguments against the free market is a lack of belief in freedom itself.
- Milton Friedman
BarryLee is offline  
Old December 17, 2012, 02:57 PM   #3
Senior Member
Join Date: February 12, 2010
Location: Georgia
Posts: 507
although I am all for retired military personnel to receive an M-16 or their duty weapon upon retirement, like they do in some police departments. I figure if they were in the military for 20 years they can handle one of those weapons but I digress. That is not the case nowadays.

He could have smuggled it back from a deployment but they are not just handing out M-16s and M9s when you leave.
Segui il tuo corso e lascia dir le genti - Dante

Blaming guns for crime is like blaming the planes for 9/11
cannonfire is offline  
Old December 17, 2012, 02:57 PM   #4
Ben Towe
Senior Member
Join Date: March 6, 2009
Location: Middle Tennessee
Posts: 1,128
In World War 2 or Korea perhaps. Probably not after that, as we began issuing fully automatic weapons between Korea and Vietnam.
'Merica: Back to back World War Champs
Ben Towe is offline  
Old December 17, 2012, 03:18 PM   #5
Senior Member
Join Date: November 15, 2007
Location: Outside KC, MO
Posts: 10,128
Officers used to be allowed to buy and carry personal sidearms. Otherwise, I do not know of officially sanctioned programs for service members to keep issued weapons.
MLeake is offline  
Old December 17, 2012, 03:22 PM   #6
Old Grump
Member in memoriam
Join Date: April 9, 2009
Location: Blue River Wisconsin, in
Posts: 3,144
They had to buy the weapon and it was at the commanders discretion whether or not it was allowed. Today it ain't happening but if they were smart everybody from potato peeler to Airborne to desk jockey to pilot to engine-man on a submarine should be qualified expert with a handgun and long gun and the guns with 500 rounds of ammo for each should be part of their checkout kit when they separate from service if they have an honorable discharge.

Just dos centavos from a dinosaur
Good intentions will always be pleaded for any assumption of power. The Constitution was made to guard the people against the dangers of good intentions. There are men in all ages who mean to govern will, but they mean to govern. They promise to be good masters, but they mean to be masters.
--Daniel Webster--
Old Grump is offline  
Old December 17, 2012, 04:19 PM   #7
Gary L. Griffiths
Senior Member
Join Date: April 7, 2000
Location: AZ, WA
Posts: 1,412
Once upon a time it was true. My grandfather was offered his .45 when he left service after WWI, but he turned it down. Because he was an officer, they wouldn't let him take a Springfield, which was what he wanted!

When I retired in '91, I requested my sidearm, a .38 S&W that I had carried most of my time in service (I was a CID Special Agent). There were provisions that a non-automatic weapon of special sentimental value or which was used in an act of heroism could be purchased for its acquisition cost by the person to whom it was issued. Apparently carrying the same weapon for a dozen years didn't make it sentimental enough for them to grant my request. Would have loved to get my excellent Model 10 for $57.00!
Violence is an ugly thing, but not the ugliest of things. The decayed and degraded state of moral and valorous feeling which believes that nothing is worth violence is much worse. Those who have nothing for which they are willing to fight; nothing they care about more than their own personal safety; are miserable creatures who have no chance of being free, unless made and kept so by the exertions of those better than themselves. Gary L. Griffiths, Chief Instructor, Advanced Force Tactics, Inc. (Paraphrasing John Stuart Mill)
Gary L. Griffiths is offline  
Old December 17, 2012, 04:37 PM   #8
Senior Member
Join Date: January 12, 2010
Posts: 198
Thanks for the responses!

I thought it was probably not true, but it's nice to have some conformation with all the mis-information running around.
Morgoroth is offline  
Old December 17, 2012, 07:04 PM   #9
Senior Member
Join Date: May 4, 2001
Posts: 7,042
The only situation where an enlisted man could have his rifle was in the Marine Corp up until WWII.
A retiring Marine enlisted man could buy his rifle. I think this policy went back to the very founding of the Corps.

There were a VERY few cases where rifles were presented as shooting awards or to high medal winning heroes. These were usually marked with a plaque in the stock or some sort of engraving.
I seem to recall that after the war Audie Murphy's favorite M1 Carbine was found and presented to him, and is now in a museum.

For many years, officers were allowed to buy or to just keep their service pistol, especially West Point grads who were often issued a gun upon graduation.
As example, General Eisenhower was issued a Colt Model 1911 pistol when he graduated West Point, and he kept it after he retired.

In probably 99.9% of cases, a rifle or pistol was simply stolen from the military.
Dfariswheel is offline  
Old December 17, 2012, 07:47 PM   #10
ohen cepel
Senior Member
Join Date: November 20, 1999
Location: Where they send me
Posts: 1,013
Only people I know who could do it was generals when they retire, they can buy their sidearm.

In OEF the only thing we could even ship back were antiques. Nothing modern could come home.
He who dares wins.

NRA Life Benefactor Member
ohen cepel is offline  
Old December 17, 2012, 07:55 PM   #11
Senior Member
Join Date: November 29, 2007
Location: Everett, WA
Posts: 5,975
Only general level officers get to keep or are presented with their side arm.

Any other soldier that keeps a military issue firearm didn't do it legally.
Buzzcook is offline  
Old December 18, 2012, 12:15 AM   #12
Senior Member
Join Date: January 28, 2006
Posts: 1,381
+1 to Buzzcook and others regarding the generals and their M9s. I have been fortunate enough to work with some new "stars" when they were issued their sidearm: a very nice, wood gripped, high luster finish M9. I talked with the issuing armorer about it. Upon retirement, they can either turn in the weapon or purchase it for somewhere just north of $400.
globemaster3 is offline  

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 02:08 PM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
This site and contents, including all posts, Copyright © 1998-2016 S.W.A.T. Magazine
Copyright Complaints: Please direct DMCA Takedown Notices to the registered agent:
Contact Us
Page generated in 0.06946 seconds with 9 queries