The Shootist

Terry Anderson thought he'd be in Athens right now, chasing his lifelong dream of Olympic gold. Instead, he's in prison, his life plugged full of holes.

Around that time, Colonel Noble became Anderson's "PMO"--personnel management officer. Noble oversaw the careers of about 3,000 Army Reserve officers, cutting orders, dispatching them for training, making sure their paperwork was up to date. Major Anderson was assigned to the headquarters of the Army Corps of Engineers in Washington, D.C. Most of Noble's reservist officers had files an inch thick. Anderson beat them by several feet. "I got full access to his file, including the restricted file, which has classified information," Noble says. Anderson had a Top Secret security classification, one level higher than most officers.

Anderson was working on RESDRO--Reservists in Support of Disaster Relief Operations--which Noble calls Anderson's "brainchild." It mobilizes reservists with expertise within hours during national emergencies, such as the aftermath of Hurricane Andrew and 9-11. "He would have 10 or 15 projects going on at the same time," Noble says. Some of his orders had classified components. "Terry was in a position, with a dual citizenship...to get in and get equipment and get intelligence, if you will, that has certainly made this country more secure. I can't elaborate beyond that."

After the Cuban-defector incident, Anderson saw an opportunity to turn his contacts into another kind of gold. He set up Combat Core Certification Professionals to acquire and test opposing-forces aircraft under four classified contracts issued by the DOD. The C3P catalog included missiles, light and heavy arms, tanks, radar, antiaircraft guns and fighter aircraft.

Marylynn Anderson feared for her life after finding her husband's cache of secret weapons.
Marylynn Anderson feared for her life after finding her husband's cache of secret weapons.
Terry Anderson won 17 national titles as a shooter and made two Olympic teams.
Photo courtesy of pilkguns.com
Terry Anderson won 17 national titles as a shooter and made two Olympic teams.

Anderson brought in David Baskett, formerly with the Advanced Armament Concepts office of the U.S. Army weapons laboratory. "You could sit down with Terry and talk about how the KGB was monitoring the shooters," Baskett says, "or just how things were running behind the Iron Curtain in places we couldn't go but he could. The intrigue was fascinating to him, and Terry liked being the center of attention. But he was also very disciplined about his business activities and could build a company very quickly."

Anderson invested in a company called Aviation Classics in Reno, Nevada, operated by a cantankerous mechanic named Al Reddick. Baskett bought opposing-forces equipment in Afghanistan; Reddick did the same in Indonesia, and his son, Alby Reddick, made purchases in Eastern Europe. "We thought the Cold War would go on for another 20 years," Anderson says. But the fall of the Berlin Wall spelled the end of the C3P.

Now living in California, Baskett was astonished to learn Anderson was in prison. "He always had guns around," Baskett says. "I always did, too. You admire the engineering and artwork and design that went into them. As the rules changed, he didn't keep up with the requirements for keeping them. You can't give them away, you can't sell them, but at one time they were perfectly legitimate."

But Anderson knew the machine guns and silencers were illegal; he stored them in the secret compartment and told Marylynn never to open it. For years, she complied.


When his children were old enough to shoot, Anderson built an air-pistol firing range on their back porch. Though his oldest child, Monica, wasn't interested in shooting, his son Edward picked up the sport and competed at the junior level.

Marylynn portrays her husband as a "neglectful, absentee" dad who gave Edward the silent treatment for months when he decided not to pursue competitive shooting. But one longtime associate--who otherwise despises Anderson--disagrees. "He was an attentive father," the associate says, "especially for someone who grew up in boarding school."

When Edward got an invitation to the Olympic Training Center, Bob Mitchell, executive director of the USA Shooting Team, says Anderson wasn't a pushy papa when it came to coaching his son. "It was just the opposite," Mitchell says. "It was all very laid-back. Terry was probably giving Edward less advice than I do to my own kids."

In court Marylynn would blast Anderson for not contacting their children. But Anderson says he was told by his attorneys he couldn't call their home. He had to go to court for permission to attend Edward's graduation from high school. Anderson blames his wife for pushing his children to take sides.

Noble signed an affidavit saying that while waiting outside the courtroom to testify in the divorce, Marylynn's psychiatrist, Leo McCandlish, showed Monica a book describing the traits of a sociopath, which he applied to Anderson. "Many times Monica said, 'I don't want to testify against my father,'" Noble says. "That guy Leo badgered her and hounded her."

Monica complained to Noble that her father didn't care about her because he hadn't called. Noble explained that there was a protective order prohibiting him from contacting his children. "She didn't know that," Noble says.

Calling from a hotel room in New York during a trip with her mother, Monica says, "Actions speak a lot louder than words. I was not on that restraining order. He knows my cell phone number. He knows my e-mail address."

But Brumley says when Anderson did phone her, Monica wouldn't take the call.

Monica says she had dinner with her father before he went to prison. "He was talking about how he contacted the IRS, and they were going after my mom," Monica says. "I don't really appreciate that. He doesn't really understand that his actions affect us."

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