No one is bigger on safety and self-defense than Jon Almasy, owner and firearms instructor of Aegis Dynamics.
As a current local law enforcement sergeant, Almasy sees first hand the result of what happens when people are unable to defend themselves in deadly force encounters. He knows that seconds count when it comes to self-defense; and knowledgeable, equipped and efficient people are the survivors.
PHOTOGRAPHY BY Megan Deitz
“We can’t [law enforcement] be there exactly when needed,” says Almasy. “We can get there quickly, but it’s usually after the fact. It’s often up to the individual person to defend themselves in a way that they are comfortable with.”
With Aegis Dynamics, Almasy has set out to give people the skills and experience needed to be responsible gun owners.
Jon Almasy always had set professional interests in mind, but it started with something much different than law enforcement.
“I always had two things I wanted to do, filming and law enforcement,” says, Almasy.
He was able to fulfill both of those goals. Originally from Raleigh, Jon came to the area in 1996 to study film at UNCW. He left school when he had a full-time filming opportunity with a private company. After a while, he realized that the film industry lifestyle was not for him.
So he turned to his other passion. His father and a close neighbor, both in law enforcement, provided inspiration for his next endeavor. He enrolled in BLET classes (Basic Law Enforcement Training). Almasy’s immediate goal upon graduation was to become a firearms instructor.
Almasy received certification to be a NC Law Enforcement Firearms Instructor and a NC Department of Justice Concealed Handgun Permit Instructor. Along with these credentials, he has 12 years experience working in law enforcement, teaches law enforcement classes, and is an instructor for the IPMBA (International Police Mountain Bike Association).
He opened Aegis Dynamics in 2015 to serve the Leland and Wilmington areas. The significance behind the business’s name is clear: Aegis is the Greek word for shield, and, like a shield, a handgun is meant for self-defense. The word Dynamics was chosen to emphasize the importance of handling a gun with fluency and efficiency.
Almasy’s goal is to provide clients with firearm skill and sufficient range experience with an emphasis on gun safety. He goes by a simple philosophy.
“Just because you may own a gun, doesn’t mean you know how to use it. Just like the saying, ‘owning a guitar doesn’t make you a musician’,” says Almasy.
Aegis Dynamics instructs customers at every skill level: beginner, intermediate and advanced. They offer classes such as Concealed Carry Permit classes, Introduction to Firearms, Marksmanship for Beginners, Intermediate Carry Techniques, and Advanced Firearms Instruction. Customers are encouraged to suggest types of classes they feel would be beneficial.
Clients praised a recent Ladies Only Conceal Carry Class so much that another one is being offered in August.
“In part of the classes, we talk about situational awareness,” says Almasy. “A client that had gone through one of the classes told me that she had noticed a man following her and he tried to assault her; but because of what she learned in class, she was able to get away.”
Since safety is always Almasy’s number one concern, he keeps his student to instructor ratio 1:6.
Aegis Dynamics teaches diverse groups of clients, from young professionals to retirees. They also offer group rates and discounts to first responders.
“We have instructed a lot of church groups, and one of my last classes was with a software company,” says Almasy. “I’ve even taught my mom, who is 80 years old. My vision is to always get people comfortable when out on the range.”
Almasy has much in store for Aegis Dynamic’s future.
“I’d like to combine firearm classes with an unarmed self-defense class, to give people even more options to defend themselves.”
With Almasy being a husband and father of three, he also sees the importance of offering gun safety classes for parents.
“We are able to tailor a class to fit any individual,” says Almasy.
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