A year ago, I was with Mike Vanderboegh at the NRA meeting in Nashville, Tennessee. We grew closer, and worked on stories together. I first saw Mike in person at the Restore the Constitution Rally on April 19th, 2010. Mike passed on 10 August this year. He was a committed Christian, so I hope he is fighting for us from the other side. Mike and I once prayed for assistance. We got it.
I feel compelled to tell this story. I have not published it before. It happened while working on a story that Mike and David Codrea had from insider sources. I did not know or need to know their identities. Mike and David Codrea are the people who broke and pursued the Fast and Furious story and scandal.
Mike and I had been attempting to meet with Lieutenant Colonel Robert K. Brown, publisher of Soldier of Fortune magazine, and NRA director. LTC Brown was a reliable contact for Mike on the NRA Board.
But like many busy people, Robert Brown did not always keep his phone on. He was traveling to or at the NRA meeting, so his location was constantly in flux. We could not find him, in spite of our best efforts, including contacting known associates and the NRA staff in attempts to locate him.
We spent a fair amount of time in the press room. While there, Mike jocularly asked me “What are two Christian boys like us doing in this den of pagans?”
We were sitting at one of the long rows of tables, working on stories. I had loaned Mike my laptop, because he had problems with his equipment, and he was not familiar with the Linux operating system. We had tried hard to make contact with Robert Brown. We had failed. It was late during the meeting and Mike looked disappointed and resigned. He said: “We have to face facts. We aren't going to make contact with Robert Brown.”
I said: “Let's pray on it”. We bowed heads, and I said a short prayer. Lord, please have Robert K. Brown show up in this press room in the next hour. Amen.
20 minutes later, a familiar voice was heard to our right. Mike looked up. It was Robert K. Brown, not 20 feet away.
I was an agnostic for 40 years. I know that this is no way to objectively “prove” divine intervention. I am merely relating what happened. It is not statistically significant. It is a subjective anecdote. But faith is subjective.
Mike was a man of faith who worked hard to undo the damage that he had done as a communist operative. He felt privileged to have a chance to do so. Mike and the Sipsey Street Irregulars made a difference. Mike's hard work and fearless investigations exposed corruption that would otherwise never have come to light.
Mike is gone now. Without his commitment, talent, and hard work, the Sipsey Street Irregulars blog is shutting down. It is a significant loss to Second Amendment supporters everywhere.
I miss Mike, and I will miss the Sipsey Street Irregulars.
See you on the other side, Mike. God is with us.
©2016 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice is included.
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