The NRA Years 1984-92
I finally graduated with my MBA from ETSU in December 1983 and moved back to the Washington, DC area to work for Gary L. Anderson and the International Shooter Development Fund, Inc. at the NRA Headquarters in downtown Washington, DC.
My eighth team was for the IV Championships of the Americas in Fort Benning, Georgia. I shot 300m Standard Rifle in the remnants of another hurricane. I didn't shoot very well, but did help the team win a gold team medal. I was inducted in the Tennessee Tech Sports Hall of Fame the previous morning in Cookeville, Tennessee.
Ray in 1985.
My last team was for the 44th World Shooting Championships in Skoevde, Sweden. I was the alternate in 300m Standard Rifle and didn't actually compete. I was also the Assistant Team Leader there and in Suhl, East Germany for the remainder of the World Championships. That was it for the "big" teams.
They came up with "World Cups" about that time. I did shoot a qualifying score for the 1988 Olympics in 50m smallbore rifle prone at the Zurich World Cup, but didn't come close to making the Olympic Team. I was the Rifle Coach at the 6th World Air Gun Championships in Sarajevo, Yugoslavia in April 1989 and Assistant Team Leader for the 46th World Shooting Championships in Milan, Italy in July 1994. I also represented Shooting on the U.S. Olympic Committee Board of Directors in 1994.
I also shot Service Rifle (M14 NM) some after I left the Army. I almost won the National Service Rifle Championship in 1982, but got caught in a nice wind change on my last ten shots of the last 600 yard match. One of the neater accomplishments was that I was the high shooter (Pershing Trophy) in the National Trophy Rifle Team Match in 1976 and 1991. I always prided myself on doing well in team matches! From what I can remember, I never lost a point standing in the National Trophy Team Match or the Interservice Ten Man Team Match, the two toughest service rifle competitions there are. I averaged 494.0 for four Interservice Ten Man Team Matches.
These two pictures were taken to demonstrate positions for Men's Air Rifle and Men's 50m Free Rifle Kneeling. The picture on the left was used by NRA for an ad in a Capital Hill newspaper and also by the USOC as the model for the metal cutout representing Shooting on the campus of the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, CO. See below.
Ray next to the metal shooting figure in the courtyard of U.S. Olympic Training Center.
Linda Marie Fitzgibbon and I married Oct. 29, 1988 in Fairfax County, Virginia. I had met Linda while playing on the NRA softball team. She had moved down to DC to stay with her friends, Vicki Fitzgerald and Debbie Moran.
Camp Perry, Ohio in 1989. I was the Runnerup in the National Smallbore Rifle Prone Championships.