Riding Shotgun With Charlie
Renee Gagne & Kerrie Ann Auclair
Sisters In Arms, DC Project
After I had Kerrie Ann Auclair (RSWC #139) on the show, we became friends. She invited me to an Armed Women of America chapter anniversary celebration and I met Renee Gagne there. The party was fun and I even danced! Then one of them had the idea that they should get in the stagecoach for a dual interview. After Renee became the Rhode Island representative for the DC Project we talked more about making it happen. Then they started their own local access show. They hoodwinked me into having them on my show, then they took me to be a guest on their show, Sisters In Arms.
Kerrie Ann and Renee are Sisters In Arms. Really! They both got into shooting and had a yearning for more training. But after several trips to a local club and having several of the guys want to take them out for a date rather than help them, they decided they needed to learn somewhere else.
Kerrie Ann learned about The Well Armed Woman (now the Armed Women of America – AWA) and started a chapter. They both became NRA and MA State Police certified instructors through the Gun Owners Action League. And they started training more women. Sometimes, a woman wants to learn about firearms from another woman because they may be domestic abuse survivors or getting out of a bad relationship or divorce, which is very understandable.
They have built their chapter with in person and online/virtual training sessions. The ages of their members are from young women up to women in their 70’s! Their group meets once a month. They have a learning segment and they hit the range, too. Their training has helped them realize that there are folks that are ‘casual’ gun owners and that many people don’t dry practice (dry fire) in between meetings.
We spend time talking about some training issues and family issues about having a firearm in the home. It’s very important that everyone is familiar with firearm safety and that there is a safety plan and everyone knows what it is, too. One of the big things in the family is to not make owning a gun taboo. We need to make firearms a normal part of life. We need to let new (and non-)gun owners know that firearms have several uses, from self defense, recreation, and competition shooting.
Starting a chapter led to activism and The DC Project. Kerrie Ann took the role in Massachusetts and Renee just took the Rhode Island spot. Their chapter got some local recognition on the front cover of the newspaper, which led to an interview on the local access station. While they were filming as guests, they had the idea to host their own TV show. They took the newspaper article title, Sisters In Arms, and made that their show name.The show is going to focus on getting the word out about firearms, safety, and activism, but also that gun owners are regular people that you see around town. Many people in MA are closet gun owners who don’t want it to let others know that they own firearms.
This is a show that was fun to film and make a better connection with Renee and Kerrie Ann. These ladies are out there doing; instructing, activism, and leading. In the middle of the show, we stopped to grab a selfie of a billboard someone has on their property. Of course, since we’re in Massachusetts, we had to stop and get a Dunkin’!
Renee: “We just wanted to learn. We were really super excited about learning. And that was just getting in the way of our learning.”
Renee: “The reality is most of us will never shoot anyone.”
Kerrie Ann: “You have to be your own first responder and understand what that means.”
Kerrie Ann: “Some of the women that come to us are domestic violence survivors…”
Email: [email protected]
Armed Women of America
The DC Project
SIsters In Arms, Episode 1 on TCAM
Second Amendment Foundation
Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms
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