To anybody(s) who stole the fishing gear from my garage on July 17, 2019: May you rot in hell. Strong words, aren’t they? I have no tolerance for thieves and wish to use considerably more graphic language. Several explicit samples of improper grammar spring to mind.

Last Friday, my garage was broken into. The thieves picked a period hanging fruit; they took several backpacks left looking at the toolbox individuals ATV trailer. Within those packs were fifteen years of accumulated fishing and outdoor gear. When we began to calculate the charge to exchange the missing items, I was dumbfounded. It is amazing the amount we dedicate to outdoor gear. Typically, quality outdoor products are amassed over a long period. A lure here, a lure there, it is difficult to go out of a sports store without dropping at the very least $20. And when traveling, the savvy angler will usually browse the local sporting goods vendor for specific lures indigenous to the region.

The issue is, lots of the items in our packs are not replaceable. Like my dad’s fishing bait or my grandfather’s hand-tied flies. Or the anniversary addition Leatherman I received like a gift back many years ago. And then there is the Florida Gators sweatshirt I bought during our anniversary vacation last spring. Outrageously expensive – no. Priceless sentimental value – absolutely. I wonder in the event the individuals who stole our property gave it an additional thought. Do they feel below par? Do they steal as they are poverty-stricken fishermen? I don’t think so. Chances are, the knives & multi-tools will probably be pawned and everything else will probably be dumped. So eventually, it can be likely that they stole over $1,500 of outdoor gear to net $100 in the pawnshop.

Aside from your outright anger from the crime, we have been concerned that these thieves will return. Our garage comes complete full of outdoor equipment. A canoe, kayak, 2 pontoon tubes, a trolling motor, an ATV trailer, 2 motorcycles, 2 4-wheelers, tents, sleeping bags, life jackets, lanterns, tools, and countless other outdoor treasures are stuffed into our 2-car garage. My wife’s fishing license was tucked into the pocket of her backpack. Listed for the fishing license are our address, her age, and driver’s license number. This makes identity theft a practical concern.

We reside in a middle-class neighborhood in a town. I can remember becoming an adult around the farm. We didn’t lock home or cars, and the keys were left inside ignition usually. Much is different since that time, and I fear we have not seen the worst. The methamphetamine epidemic that plagues the united states along with rising unemployment and the worst economy during my lifetime creates a recipe for increased crime in every portion of the country. Here are some tips to help keep your hard-earned property secure and safe:

 Only open your garage door when necessary, and get forced out open any further than required. This will prevent would-be thieves from inventorying your equipment and seeing something catches their eye.  Be certain to keep all outside lights replaced and then leave them on during the night. Well lit property is less attractive to a criminal.  Keep vehicles locked, and do not ever leave valuable pieces of them through the night.  If you’ve got a toolbox on your truck, maintain it locked constantly.

Always remove the receiver hitches the clothes airer.  When you get home late in the evening through the day trip for the local lake, spend some time to unpack your gear. Fishing poles, tackle boxes, and coolers left within the back of a pickup are irresistible bait for dishonest pedestrians.  Boats are magnets for thieves. Unless yours is secured in a garage or shop, store all contents indoors.  Use locking wheel chocks and other locking mechanisms for boats and trailers stored outdoors.

Do not leave garage door openers in vehicles parked outside of your garage. If you park outside, take them in with you nightly.  When you travel away, ask a pal or neighbor to pick out of your respective mail and paper and appearance in your property every single day.  If you go on vacation inside winter, be guaranteed to make arrangements to have your driveway and walk shoveled every time it snows. A foot and a half of accumulated snow without any footprints or tire tracks is a sure indicator of the vacant home.

Do not leave hide-a-keys in obvious locations on your vehicles or around your house. Would-be thieves will probably seek out your extra key under the bumper of your respective car, inside the bed rail of your truck, under the doormat, on the porch light, inside the BBQ grill, and under the little frog on your front doorstep.  Get in the habit of conducting a security check every night before you decide to go to bed. Ensure windows and doors are locked, garage doors are closed, vehicles are locked without valuables left inside, and outside lights are on.  Keep your homeowners or renters insurance current and make certain the limits are sufficient to hide the contents of one’s home and garage.  Install a burglar system if you can afford it.

Common sense, consistency, and diligence would be the best strategies for keeping your house secure. Why was my garage broken into? Because I was complacent and dissatisfied with my guard. One of our vehicle doors stayed unlocked, as well as the thieves used the garage door opener attached to the visor. The day before the burglary, our garage door remained open almost all of the day once we lazily prepared for a weekend fishing trip. Before they enter, our kids had been diligent to keep vehicles locked and property secure. But it only takes once. Don’t let it happen to you – quality outdoor equipment must be handed down through posterity as family heirlooms; not stolen and pawned by thieves lacking morals and values, without the pride and integrity that’s inherent in most outdoorsmen and women.

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