More senior citizens going through gun training

Posted at 5:34 PM, Mar 29, 2016
and last updated 2016-03-30 00:32:42-04
The National Rifle Association says more senior citizens are taking firearm training courses than before. 
According to the NRA, 22,739 people over the age of 65 took basic courses from certified instructors in 2015. They tell us that is four times the number five years ago. 
The biggest reason for the uptick in more senior citizens in classes and at the shooting range is for personal safety.
At Shooters World in Tampa, a group of three men and woman show up before the doors even open at 9 a.m.
"We're retired, we have the time to do it," Tom Depolois said.
On Tuesday morning, the four friends met up at the range to practice. The group met at a local church, before deciding they wanted to try the sport of shooting together. 
Depolois, 72, said he has a law enforcement background but it was years since he has shot.
"I haven't done it in awhile and then I met some friends church," Depolois said.
The group meets more than once a week usually.
Bruce Kitzis, general manager at Shooters World, said they offer classes for people past retirement age.
"It also gives them a sense of safety and independence," he said.
For Depolois, with age comes wisdom and appreciation for life.
"I think sometimes it takes the maturity of a senior citizen to realize sometimes you need to just walk away," he said.
As for safety, senior citizens go through the same check process as everyone.