In 1993, I began my law enforcement career as a police officer in a mid-sized southern city. With a very low salary and a large family to support, the decision to buy a high-quality flashlight was one that we made as a family. Since this could be a “lifesaving” piece of equipment, we decided to go with the best, and a SureFire 6R became my Christmas present.
Shortly after the purchase, I was dispatched to a breaking-and-entering-in-progress call. Unbeknownst to me, the suspect, who had significant mental health issues, was attempting to hack his way through the backdoor of a house with a machete. When I arrived, he walked rapidly towards me from the back of the house with an enraged look on his face and his machete raised over his head. He initially disregarded my commands to halt, so I lit him up with my 6R. Because of the ability of my SureFire to illuminate the scene at a distance, there remained adequate space between the two of us for me to initially respond without the use of deadly force. Additionally, this individual was significantly disoriented by my bright light, and this enabled me to convince him to drop the weapon. He was then taken into custody without incident.
Although this happened over two decades ago, I clearly remember the moment at which he stopped and considered his position. It was evident in the varied, fleeting expressions on his brightly lit face. Without my 6R to send out a shield of light, I would not have been able to identify and respond to this threat so efficiently and effectively. They say that nothing good happens in the dark, but a SureFire changes that equation. Since then, I have come a long way in a career where change is the only constant. However, the reliability of this flashlight has not changed; I still have it with me, and it still works perfectly. In fact, I will have a SureFire within reach until the day I die—because this “lifesaving” piece of equipment ensured that day wasn’t 20 years ago.