We all have defining moments; defining moments can come in the form of a phone call, a news story, a sunrise, a conversation, a thought, or any number of ways. I have had my share of defining moments, below are just a few. In 1999 I was a woman in my thirties doing pretty well and not really thinking much about my personal safety. I did more wrong than I did right; I was not going to be “her”, nothing would happen to “me”. I had made it this far and survived, so hey, I got this. Now comes a national news story across my radar screen with a chilling headline: A man named Cary Stayner murders three women who were vacationing in Yosemite. This story gripped me, three women who were defenseless and complied with their attacker and paid for their compliance with their lives. I was angry and sad. September 11th, 2001, another defining moment in my life. I sat riveted to the TV screen for days. I watched the twin towers fall and realized that the terrorists were here and I needed to take my personal safety seriously. I got it, or so I thought. Within 6 months of 9-11 I bought my first official gun. I found an instructor and began my training. I was on my way to protecting myself and my family, or so I thought. It did not take long for me to become complacent with my gun. I kept it locked up during the day and brought it out at night as I headed to bed.I did however always want to take my gun with us whenever we stayed in a hotel; I mean what if we met another “Cary Stayner”? It happened in an instant. Fast forward to October 2007, the defining moment that changed me at my core. My daughter was 10 years old. We live in a very nice neighborhood filled with children. I was in the kitchen finishing up the dishes when Johana asked if she could go outside and play. I said “yes”, I would be out shortly to watch her play. I never made it outside, in the spam of less than 10 minutes two men attempted to abduct my precious daughter.
Why were they on my street, what did they want with a little innocent 10 year old girl? We don’t really need to go there because the answers are pretty obvious, it was all bad. In an instant the old Vicki died and a new Vicki emerged. The very next morning was the birth of The Women’s Shooting Academy. I was on a new mission, to Educate, Encourage and Empower women to own and embrace their personal safety. Easter weekend 2008, a 2:30am phone call every mother dreads. It was another defining moment. Two hours prior to that call two armed gunned men kicked down my 27 year old sons front door. What happened next is tragic. They robbed him; they brutally beat him and then planned on murdering him. As they laid him down and put the gun to his head he found himself begging for his life. By the grace of God they did not pull the trigger. As I walked into the emergency room and saw my son laying in a bed, bandaged up but alive it hit me. I have almost lost two of my children to random senseless acts of crime. I am done. I hate what evil does. I hate evil people. I hate the system that is trying to take away my right to protect myself and my family. The above stories along with others (not shared) were preparing me, I didn’t know that at the time but I do now. I had to find a way to embrace these defining life moments and find some meaning in it all. I did, at first with the Shooting Academy, then the Safety Academy and now HELP ME HELP HER.