Former U.S. Army Cavalry Scout and Tanker, Marc William Hampton hasn’t left the military too far behind. Driving a decommissioned M35a2 deuce-and-a-half, he rolls through Radcliff, Kentucky which sits adjacent to Fort Knox. As he drives, some people even mistake him for active-duty military.
Hampton believes in preparation and always keeps at least two months of supply at the ready, including lots of ammo. During times of increased uncertainty, he ups his inventory. Guns.com spoke to him by phone at his home in Kentucky to get his advice on the best way to prep for the uncertain.
Guns.com: Marc, how are you doing?
Hampton: I’m doing great.
Guns.com: Are you concerned about the Coronavirus pandemic?
Hampton: I am. It is something that everybody should take seriously. You don’t want to get sick and people that have gotten sick have ended up in hospitals and/or dead. Of course, that depends on your age and health, well being. If you have preexisting health problems, especially respiratory issues, you should definitely be worried about it.
Guns.com: Have you noticed people around you being concerned?
Hampton: Absolutely. Despite me still working, and I do work in a factory-style environment, half of our workforce is gone. Most of that is due to childcare issues, but I think a lot of it has to do with people just not wanting to be around other people.
Guns.com: Have you made any gun or ammo purchases lately?
Hampton: Yes I have. I bought a significant amount of ammunition recently just because if the economy does crash because of this — even though the economy is stimulated — I do think ammo and guns would be worth more than gold. I could trade a brick of .22 ammo for a loaf of bread if I had to when a wheelbarrow full of money would mean nothing to somebody other than toilet paper.
Guns.com: How much ammo should someone have to be prepared?
Hampton: It depends on where you are and what your situation might be; but I would say for long guns, you wouldn’t want to have any less than 1,000 rounds, handguns probably about 500 rounds, shotguns 500 rounds. Because you can sustain yourself with something like that for quite a long time hunting-wise or defensive-wise.
Guns.com: Have you noticed a shortage of guns or ammo recently?
Hampton: Gun sales have gone through roof, so have ammo sales. I bought my ammo fairly early on before the shortage set in; but yes, definitely, ammo has been flying off the shelves and new gun owners are finding out the problems with trying to become a new gun owner. You get put on waitlists and they’re not happy about it.
Guns.com: Do you carry a gun on yourself at all times?
Hampton: Yes I do, unless I’m at work because it is not allowed, but it is in my car. I carry a Canik with a red dot sight. I’m sort of set up John Wick style. I have the whole 3-gun set up pretty much with me at all times.
Guns.com: Would you call yourself a prepper?
Hampton: I would, but not in the way you might see on television. I don’t have a basement full of food or ammo. I’m very light on prepping. I have enough food to last me about two months, but I have enough ammo to fight a small war.
Guns.com: Are you still driving your M35a2 deuce-and-a-half?
Hampton: Hell yeah I’m driving it. I’ve been getting some weird looks lately. I just put a new driveshaft in it last weekend and took it out to get food for the geese. I keep livestock because, well, you know, prepping.
I’ve got an inverter set up in it and it’s multi-fuel. I picked up another 55-gallon drum of fuel for it recently in case I have to run it to power the house, but I don’t see the power going out or anything like that. But fuel’s at an all-time low, so why not buy?
Guns.com: Do you have any advice to someone who wants to get into prepping?
Hampton: It’s easy. Start out with some tough boxes. I started out with two tough boxes and I filled them with canned goods. Now, I have enough food to last me for two months. I didn’t break the bank. I did it as I went. A little here, a little there adds up quickly. You go through it every now and then and you see what’s getting old and you eat it and replace it with new stuff.
As for weapons and stuff like that, go buy something you like and keep it, and keep a bunch of ammo for it and make it accurate and go have fun with it. You’ll save your ass later. It’s really not hard to prep. Just be smart. Don’t be naive. Don’t live day to day getting what you need. You should always have an emergency supply at your house.
Guns.com: Wise words. Thanks, Marc.
Hampton: You’re welcome.
Get to know Marc a little bit better in the video we made with him a few years ago.