I’m an active duty service member in the United States Air Force. On base, I’m very restricted in what I can carry which I’ll be delving into in another article. When I’m not on base, my every day carry (EDC) focuses around the set of skills that I have learned as a Survival, Evasion, Resistance, and Escape instructor for the military. As such – my EDC can be used as a frame of reference as you build your EDC and make it work for you.

EDC of an Active Duty Military member when off base

Starting off with defensive measures I carry a Glock 17 Generation 4 which has been outfitted with Trijicon HD night sights. I opt not to carry a light on my weapon when in a civilian capacity and as such I have tritium sights to ensure that I can see my sight picture regardless of lighting conditions. There are many excellent night sights available on the market. I’m just partial to the Trijicon’s which have served me well in adverse environments. Besides the sights no further modifications have been made to my weapon besides the thousands upon thousands of rounds fired through it to smooth up the action and to keep myself proficient.

The Glock 17 is carried in the excellent G-code INCOG holster. I carry my weapon at the 12 o’clock position which is otherwise known as “appendix carry”. I find that this method allows for quick presentation, ease of concealment and quick recognition if your shirt rides up over the butt of your pistol. There are many models of the INCOG available on the market but I opted for the older system as it tends to sit more flush against my body compared to the newer style of clips which seems to print more on me. I believe this is in large part due to the fact that the newer INCOG’s place the clip on the outermost portion of the holster. Not to say that this is a bad design, but that rather on my body type (athletic), it does not work well.

I also carry a Benchmade SOCP dagger at my 2 o’clock position which is most similar to how I carry it during operations unless it is mounted to my plate carrier. What I like about the SOCP dagger is that it does not impede your ability to draw and fire your handgun if needed. For everyday use I have the Ontario knives 8848 RAT folding knife, which was issued to me. Although not a great knife (in your author’s opinion) I have found it to be durable and to some extent or another dependable enough to cut and pry when I need it.

EDC of an Active Duty Military member when off base

Besides my wallet and keys which are not pictured I also have my favorite item from my EDC. My Casio G-SHOCK DW9502 has been around the world and in every environmental condition known to man. It’s been soaked in salt water and blood, baked in the desert and frozen during the winter. It’s my most dependable item and was issued to me a while back. It tells the time, date, it’s my alarm clock, my workout partner and I’ve even signaled air craft with it during evasion scenarios. I have more expensive watches such as my Marathon TSAR but I always go back to the simple dependability of my G-SHOCK. I also carry a medkit in my car which, when I’m out and about, is never far from me. On top of that I have repeatedly practiced the skills necessary to deliver effective medical aid in both permissive and non-permissive environments.

There are other items that I carry that I will not discuss but I think what matters most when it comes to EDC is not the equipment but rather the skill of the individual. So many of the things we carry require skills that are perishable if not practiced often. Make sure you keep yourself in good health, make sure you have the skills necessary to keep yourself alive in adverse situations and of-course where skill can’t make up for equipment; get yourself something good.