Ryan Shannon is a modest, reluctant hero. The former Army Ranger served in Iraq and Afghanistan. He’s an honest man who believed in the mission.
“I loved my job, I loved my unit,” said Shannon.
Now, out of the Army, Shannon has been victimized on American soil. Two of Shannon's weapons, a Glock 19 and a Rugger SR 22P, were stolen from his duffle bag that he checked before boarding his Delta Airlines flight. Shannon said he did everything by the book.
“I had my weapons in a lockbox, checked them, cleared through TSA, and then put my lock box back in my luggage. And when I got to my destination they were both gone,” explained Shannon.
Shannon was returning from a trip visiting family in Flint, Michigan and had a lay-over in Minneapolis, Minnesota. He said when he reported the problem to Delta staff, they were less than helpful.
He was asked to fill out an online claim form and leave. That’s not how things work in Ryan’s world.
“In the military, if a weapon is lost, you don't go anywhere until you find it. So that was my instinct. I'm like, I can't leave here until I have my weapon. And they're just like you need to go," said Shannon.
Shannon called Port of Seattle Police who immediately filed a report. The cops think the guns were most likely stolen in Flint. Shannon contacted Delta after filling out the paperwork but said he didn't hear anything for a week. So he drove back to Sea-Tac to speak with a manager at Delta. He described the conversation as frustrating.
“She told me that she called Georgia, to the headquarters, and that I would be contacted within the hour. And I told her thank you, thank you! An hour went by, a day went by, two days went by, three days went by, a week went by, two weeks went by, and I still have not heard anything," explained Shannon.
That's when Shannon contacted me. Delta answered my calls. Within a few days a manager from the airline called Shannon with good news. They gave him two plane vouchers plus a check to reimburse him for the stolen guns. But this Army Ranger is still uneasy knowing somewhere in the bowels of an airport a thief is stealing dangerous cargo.
“I hate to think that my weapon is in the hands of a criminal. Who knows what it's doing right now. Who it’s already met," expressed Shannon.
So what happens next? Who investigates this case? I've learned there's no national protocol to investigate guns stolen in airports. I'll explore that issue next.