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Riding Shotgun With Charlie

Oct 24, 2023

Riding Shotgun With Charlie


Jim Shepherd

The Outdoor Wire, Publisher


At SHOT SHow 2023, I was in the media room with my good friend, The Pen Patriot, John Petrolino. We decided to only have a half a cup of coffee before we hit the SHOT floor. We ran into Alan Gottlieb and he asked if we were going to be around, he wanted to talk with us. We told Alan we would be there. When Alan walked away, we looked at each other and said “Let’s have a full cup”. While we were listening to Alan tell stories, Jim Shepherd came over. John & I didn’t know him, but Alan introduced us and said he would be a great guest in the stagecoach. We swapped contact info and I said I would be in touch next time I’m heading to Nashville. When I reached out to Jim, he said he would like to be on the show.


Jim and I were going to meet at a burger shop in Murfreesboro, TN, but they were closed for the week. He’s got so many amazing stories. He has employee badge #7 from CNN so he had a professional relationship with Ted Turner.. He did radio talking about financial news. He was an on air anchor for a while. He’s been involved with The Golf Wire and The Golf Channel. 


He used a term I never heard of before, a post gun. I had no idea what it was. He said his dad would buy some guns that may have been in rough shape. If he wasn’t confident about their condition, his dad would tie the gun to a post, put a string on the trigger, then they would hide behind some trees or some cover and pull the string. If the gun fired, it was good. If it didn’t, at least they had cover. He’s always been a gun guy but like many, there are times in his life where he was less involved with them. 


He was filming a commercial with Tiger Woods in Florida and the weather was not cooperating. So they were just hanging out. Tiger asked him if he was going to the gun show in town.  Jim made some calls and found out it was SHOT Show. Being in the media, he was able to finagle some passes and he recorded some interviews. At the time, he was publishing The Golf Wire. 


When he went into the media room at SHOT Show, he saw there were stacks of magazines and CDs with all the catalogs and information on them. He took The Golf Wire idea and tweaked it a bit for the shooting industry. He took his computer, added an image,  added some ipsum lorem, and showed several gun industry businesses what they would be missing. He got them to sign up that day. And boom! The Outdoor Wire was created. That was 23 years ago. Now everyone who is in the know gets whichever Wire suits them. There’s about 10 wires you can subscribe to and get in your mailbox. 


What I really enjoyed about my time with Jim is his stories. He’s an amazing guy with incredible stories. He flew to Tulsa for a job interview. He saw the city and knew, coming from New York City, that he didn’t want to work there. He called the person he was going to meet and canceled the interview while he was at the airport and took the next flight back to New York. The man he was going to meet was thankful because that was the only day he was able to golf and now he had what I call “the gift of time”. 


Jim has taken chances. He’s been around the world. He’s done some amazing things that he told me over lunch, which I can’t repeat. I want to get the stories out about gun owners, which of course, Jim is. But I also want to hear about adventures and when people go out on a limb and try things that they don’t know how they’re going to end up. And they make them just fine. He’s got a ton of these experiences in life. I’m glad I got some of them, on and off film. 

Favorite quotes: 

“My definition of an anchor is the thing that holds you in place and impedes any progress. But it also holds you on the bottom and keeps you from going.”

“I’ve once again turned a hobby into work.”

“Somebody figured out they needed it, and I haven’t had to look for a job in years.”

“I never set out to be anything other than a reporter.”

“Everything happens for a reason, you may not know the reason, you may never know the reason.”

“Sometimes the things you don’t get are better than the things you get.”

The Outdoor Wire

Second Amendment Foundation


Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms



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Dennis McCurdy

Author, Speaker, Firewalker


Self Defense Radio Network


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