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Old 05-16-2018, 03:56 PM
bamajim bamajim is offline
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: Fort Rucker, Alabama
Posts: 165
Default CMP memory

My first visit to the CMP South store was in the fall of 2005. I had just returned from Egypt as part of the Multi Force and Observer (MFO) American contingent. I had always wanted an M-1. My grandfather had one that was supposed to have been smuggled back after WWII. How true that is I have no idea. My wife and 2 kids took the drive from south Alabama and since I had went to basic training at Fort McClellan in 1985 I was going to make it a 2 pronged trip. One to visit the old stomping grounds and two was to visit the CMP (Sneaky huh?).
When I arrived at the old CMP store I was surprised to see 7 people waiting outside. This proved to be a pleasant surprise because I learned quite a bit from just listening to the conversations. As opening time got closer the line began to grow to about 20 people. I must have been semi early.
When the door opened and we signed in I realized how much of a rookie I was in the Garand world. It looked like a feeding frenzy in a shark full of hungry sharks. People were grabbing up three and four rifles at a time to look them over. One guy started taking one apart without taking it to the counter which earned him the distinction of being asked to leave. WOW! Evidently there was a rash of folk swapping parts out.
I really had no idea what I was looking for when this tall lanky gentlemen with an apron came over and asked what I was looking for. Being a rookie I simply said an M-1. The look on his face was priceless. The look of well no kidding was what I saw. Then I told him I wanted a good shooter. He took the time to walk me around and point out some rifles and I eventually chose one from his recommendations.
After doing the paperwork and paying for my treasure I was greeted by a less that happy wife and irritated kids. Evidently my few minutes turned into 3 hours. Oops! I learned that the next time I visited it would be on my own where I could savor the atmosphere. So I did. Over the next few years I visited a few more times. I even had the pleasure of meeting Mr. Michael Orest and getting a peak into the back where all the magic happened. At least in my mind.
I can say that since then and with all of my subsequent visits to the original South store and to the new South store they have all been enjoyable memories. They are truly a class bunch of folks that truly believe in customer service.
Yes I still relish the scent of the old South store.
Bamajim (James)
USMC/US Army (Ret)
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Old 05-16-2018, 05:07 PM
weimar_police weimar_police is online now
Join Date: Nov 2012
Location: Near Spokane, WA
Posts: 1,851

nice story james - I was in the Netherlands in the mid 90's and an E-7 (SFC) told me about the program and how I should buy my 12 a yr! I was like, holy @#%^

After retirement in 2000 and I got a civilian job, it occured to me about 6 yrs ago to check it out. NEVER made it to North Store while living in Penn for 9 yrs, but that was mainly to when I was very interested they had little. NOW... I need to find an excuse to fly to Anniston or close

Edward Tinker
Veteran Bring Backs Vol III 2012
Co-Author of Police Lugers 2012
Author of Veteran Bring Backs Vol I & Vet Bring Backs Vol II, a collection of stories on guns & equipment brought back by GI's.
Co-Author of the book Simson Lugers
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Old 05-25-2018, 08:39 AM
AngryDoug AngryDoug is online now
Join Date: Mar 2018
Location: Maryland
Posts: 244

I was in Anniston, Alabama in 2004 for pre-mission training before my first deployment to Afghanistan. I can't believe that during the four months we were there not one of our trainers, nor anyone in my unit ever mentioned the CMP.

I have had a dream to own an M1 Garand since the 80s and only recently was able to start looking for one. I went to the CMP for the first time in March after a 12-hour drive from Maryland.

Perhaps it's for the better I didn't know about the CMP in 2004 because I'd probably have 100 rifles now, and a divorce.
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Old 05-31-2018, 04:00 PM
Soljerblue Soljerblue is offline
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Alabama
Posts: 379

My first visit to South Store was in '06, and I picked up a Greek return with post-WWII serial numbers that I subsequently had reconditioned for competition. I've been to South Store many times since, and have had only good experiences -- whether buying or just looking.
Galatians 5:1
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