Gunsite Academy president and owner Buz Mills, left, presents the commemorative plague to Wiley Clapp during the special weeklong celebration.
Wiley Clapp, Shooting Illustrated’s “Fightin’ Iron” columnist, was honored during a weeklong celebration, April 25 to 29, at Gunsite Academy in Paulden, AZ. The world-class training facility also named one of its classrooms for the writer, further cementing Clapp’s legacy as one of the premier proponents for the lawful use of a gun for self-defense.
“It was a grand week with a group of Wiley’s friends and family that come annually for a private class,” said Ken Campbell, Gunsite CEO and former Sheriff. “But this time we wanted to recognize Wiley for all he has done for his community, the Republic, Gunsite and the Second Amendment.”
Clapp is a decorated Marine who served in Vietnam. After leaving the U.S. military he joined the Orange County Sheriff’s Department, where he spent 18 years protecting and serving California residents. After retiring from law enforcement, he embarked on a writing and editing career that continues to this day. His column appears on the last page of Shooting Illustrated—a coveted position historically cited as a periodical’s unofficial final word.
During the week of celebration Buz Mills, Gunsite Academy president and owner, presented Clapp with a special plaque commemorating the classroom being named the Wiley Clapp Training Room. The ceremony was followed with a cowboy-style dinner with Clapp as guest of honor, with Ed Head, Gunsite range master, coach Schlyar Cloudt, Pete Iverson, Andy Blumenthal, Bob Singer, Dave Burke, Matt Newberger, David Yost and Dick Williams in attendance.
Clapp’s dedication to the Second Amendment has also resulted in various pistols, from major gun makers, bearing his name. A Colt 1911 chambered in 9 mm is one of them, but the company currently lists four versions—with .45 ACP available—in a special series in honor of the writer. A Ruger revolver also wears his name, the Wiley Clapp GP100, available through Lipseys.