Parker County Today May 2018 - Page 74

our community: TEXAS TACTICAL Story and Photos By ZACH PETERSON responder. I train these people and give them the knowledge of what needs to be done so they will feel confident and better later.”  Now celebrating 20 years of teaching, Taylor figured out that teaching is a passion of his, but not for the reasons that you think.  “I’m stingy. The life you save someday might be mine and I want to make sure you have the right train- ing.” Call us to see this property or others like it. Terri Lynn Stokes Justin Collins Realtor, BPOR 817-598-9663 Broker, GRI, MCNE 817-613-1010 72 hen Tommy Taylor started Texas Tactical 20 years ago, he discovered a new passion in his life. The retired police officer and veteran created the 25-acre complex, complete with a half-mile- long training and obstacle course and more than 30 different obstacles to train both civilians and officers in tactics. Which one offers the greatest challenges? “It varies from person to person. The one that takes the most time to complete is called ‘the Weaver.’ It’s constructed of poles that the trainees have to weave themselves up and back down to complete the challenge,” Taylor said.  Taylor is not the only veteran in his family. His office has a wall full of photos of family members who either have served or currently serve in the military.  “My granddad was drafted into the Marines, and my dad was Air Force. I joined the Army. My son has already served his time and is out. He served in the Army in Afghanistan and my daughter is current- ly active in the Army right now. While my son was serving, I was doing contract work in Iraq.” Taylor, nicknamed “Terminator Tommy,” spent four years in the US Army’s 3/504 Airborne Parachute Infantry regiment. After that, he started his second career as a police officer in Devine, Texas. Taylor eventually put down some roots here in Weatherford.  “After getting to Weatherford, I got on patrol, but it didn’t take long to get into SWAT, because that’s one of my passions. I worked my way up as team leader with the SWAT Team and was leader over the Parker County/ Weatherford SWAT team for many years.”  Tommy’s involvement with SWAT began in 1992 when he co-founded the Windcrest, Texas, SWAT team. He retired in November 2007 from the Weatherford Police Department where he served as a patrol officer and team leader of the Weatherford/ Parker County Special Operations Group. Seeing firsthand how essen- tial it is for officers to possess tacti- such as firearm safety and upkeep, reloading, and low-light shooting. For Taylor, his reward is seeing his students succeed.  “Teaching and knowing what I’m doing out there matters because it is a skill set that I feel a lot of people need. I really like seeing my past students actually get out there putting their skill sets to use. As many years as I’ve been a police officer, the first person on the scene is the first W cal skills to protect themselves and those around him, he founded Texas Tactical in 1997.  “It’s a law enforcement military training site that trains local officers and soldiers. When I got here, I saw the need of tactical training and I saw the need for more advanced training than what was being provided in the region. I see that the people need to be trained, because it’s just as the old saying goes: ‘when people need help they call the police, and when the police need help they call SWAT,’” he said. “With my background in the tacti- cal world, there are not many compa- nies and businesses out there that do this. It needs to be done and it needs to be trained. There’s a lot of people who are in law enforcement [who] need this type of training. To make sure you have the best people out there, you have the best training.” Texas Tactical teaches police and members of the military advanced skills such as moving while shooting and close-quarter combat. For all us civilians, he shares basic knowledge 73