What a Journey It's Been

What a Journey It's Been

I was feeling nostalgic on Wednesday and digging back through my email history for a specific email that popped into my head. It’s one I sent Kelly on April 1st, 2009, after I’d just put the finishing touches on itstactical.com and was preparing for its first day on the internets.

The last thing I had left to do was write the About page and I’d sent Kelly what I had so far, to get her help in editing it a bit for clarity. I guess you could say she was the first editor at ITS, but I digress. I wanted to not only share the original About page text with you, which has long since been redone, but also take a few minutes after you read it and talk about what I feel is still relevant today.

About ITS: Written April 1, 2009

ITS Tactical is dedicated to showcasing the everyday gear and DIY projects that can help you live better on the tactical side of life. We don't limit our content to any particular viewpoint, rather our goal is to become an open-source collection of different methods, ideas and knowledge that could one day save your life.

You'll read about what's working overseas and at home from our brothers in the Special Operations community, as we draw from our combined military experience and our passion for all things tactical. Our gear gets used and abused and we have to depend on it with our lives.

We strive to take the guesswork out of what will work for the soldier on deployment, the Law Enforcement Officer here at home, the insatiable adrenaline junkies and those of us who put our lives on the line everyday whether we realize it or not.

What you won't see at ITS is a strictly commercial equipment review site, when we review gear it's about what works for us, what doesn't work and why... your mileage may vary. We won't review anything that we can't see the value in.

When we look back on history, especially current history, it teaches us to depend on no one but ourselves and to have the skills, training and equipment in order to do so. Think back to the current tragedies that have effected the entire world and how long it took emergency personnel to reach the helpless. Count that their response could take at least three days to reach you and remember the rule of three's. You can survive 3 hours without shelter, 3 days without water and 3 weeks without food.

We hope that you benefit from what you read here and feel you’re better prepared.


It’s surreal in a way, reading these words I wrote 11 years ago and how they’re relevant more now than ever. We may not review gear on our website as much as we did many years ago, but it’s that foundation that helped me build upon the revolutionary designs we’re creating with our products today and it was a huge learning experience in not only figuring out what worked and what didn’t, but also what was needed and wasn’t available. That gap has been what we’ve always strived to fill with our products and making sure the quality we produce and decide to carry in our store, is second to none.

While I’ve long since been away from the Navy and those days that I was soaking up all kinds of skill-sets, I’m a life-long learner and that will never stop. It’s that desire to not only learn, but to share what I feel will benefit you, that has set us apart from day one. There wasn’t an online resource discussing the skills needed to prepare yourself for whatever may come back in 2009 and we helped pave the way with our YouTube videos, articles and photos. That knowledge transfer is deeply-rooted in ITS company philosophy, as is providing proven-products to support those skills.

The last paragraph of that original about page is the most relevant in what we all face today. Preparedness has never been more important, nor more evident. You’ve already no doubt read the articles about Law Enforcement being short-handed across the country, with some agencies making public statements about no longer responding to some break-ins, assaults without injuries and more. There’s never been a better time to be self-sufficient and it’s never too late to educate yourself in more ways to become that way. In fact, we just published an article on how you can save educational articles like that for offline viewing, just in case the internet ever goes down.

Many of us have extra time on our hands and this is a great time to learn new skills and pass them along to your family. Practice that emergency plan you’ve been neglecting, sit quietly and brainstorm scenarios that could impact your way of life and the contingencies you’d put in place. Think broadly in terms of not just the added security we should all be putting in place within our homes, but being without medical resources, lost utilities (power, water, internet) and even the mental side of what could happen, which I’m sure many of you are already experiencing without your normal social interactions and exercise routines.

Thank you for being a part of this journey we’ve been on for the past 11 years. Some of you have been here from the beginning days of ITS, as our founding Plank Owner members and some were amongst our very first customers when we started selling stickers and patches back in 2009. I feel very fortunate that we’ve been able to provide products that have indeed saved lives and given others the tools and knowledge they needed to escape some crazy situations. Hearing those stories you’ve shared and how ITS has impacted people’s lives, has made the last 11 years the most rewarding years of my life and also the fastest! I really don’t know where the time has gone.

In closing, thank you again for allowing us to continue to provide the skills and products to help you prevail over adversity since 2009.

“Don’t worry, we’ll leave the light on for you...”

Bryan Black
Founder & CEO, ITS Tactical

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