Customer War Stories: Charles England

I had recently taken some real-steel tactical training from a friend of the family who is private security turned tactical instructor. It was course 2 of 4, and I was excited to try out what I had learned while on the MilSim field.

On the field, the main central zone was a grassy valley with a 7ft. cleft in the middle, surrounded by some brush and a copse of trees. My fire team was to cut a path to enemy territory to look for a package, while the rest of the squad provided cover from on top of the embankment behind us. I had my FAMAS SV and an M9, and was pointman.

Halfway through the ravine, there was a blind bend to the right. I knew it was a blind spot, so I called halt (hand signal only, we were trying to infiltrate, not assault). The first we knew of the ambush, it was our overwatch support getting annihilated from our four o’clock flank. The ravine opened slightly to the left, but continued to our objective to the right, and our team posted in defensive positions guarding the four possible assault points. But I knew we had to keep moving or we’d get pinned down in a very bad location.

I continued forward, but got engaged soon after in a mid-range with a tango in the brush who couldn’t quite hit me from around the corner. My FAMAS had the range but not the hitting power to do significant damage to the attacker, so I had to pour out the plastic…luckily the stock TM FAMAS SV has an amazing rate of fire. I heard the tango call hit just as I reached the end of my midcap (60 rds.), but before I could begin the reload, more tangos poured from around the corner. I dropped my rifle (yay slings!) and transferred to my sidearm; the draw I used, learned from the first course, was perfect. I had my weapon out and rounds down range before either party knew what had happened (I must admit, the speed and precision with which that draw occurred surprised even me). I had three tangos down in just as many seconds, double taps to center mass at 15 yards each.

M fire team didn’t lose anyone, though our overwatch was wiped out. We made it to the package location with only a few more single encounters, but as we exfilled I took a sniper round to the neck. Not the best end to a fun mission, especially the neck shot (this was before I wore neck guards, and the reason why I do so to this day), but the encounter in the ravine, where I was first able to apply real-steel tactics and training to airsoft, is still one of my most favorite airsoft memories.

-Charles England

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