One of the most successfully television shows ever is the CBS drama “Criminal Minds.” It has spanned 14 seasons and is approaching its 300th episode. Award-winning actor Joe Mantegna (and longtime NRA member) portrays FBI Special Agent in Charge of the Behavioral Analysis Unit (BAU) David Rossi, and he has been with the show since 2007. Mantegna, who also hosts “Gun Stories” on the Outdoor Channel (that’s how I know him), is a competitive shooter and a big fan of the .45 M1911, and he will have a new gun for the 14th season of “Criminal Minds.”
That gun is a SIG Sauer 1911 Tac Ops pistol, bearing the eagle, globe and anchor of the US Marine Corps on top of its slide. Mantegna’s character, Agent Rossi, served in the USMC. The Tac Ops is full size 1911 with a rail, and its stainless steel is black due to the complete coverage Nitron finish. The gun comes with an ambidextrous safety, night sights, an extended magazine well and black grooved polymer stocks with a SIG Mark medallion.
While you can see it on Wednesday nights on CBS, you can also see it at the NRA National Firearms Museum in Fairfax, Va. That’s because Joe Mantegna has donated an identical gun, along with some “Criminal Minds” memorabilia, to the museum. Mantegna, who has for 13 years joined fellow actor Gary Sinise for the National Memorial Day Concert, stopped by the museum on his way to Washington, D.C.
From left: Incoming NRA President Lt.-Col. Oliver North; NRA Museums Senior Curator Phil Schreier; and Joe Mantegna, longtime NRA member and star of the CBS hit series "Criminal Minds."
Joining Mantegna for the ribbon cutting was NRA‘s next president, Lt.-Col. Oliver North. “It’s a privilege to be here, and what a great weekend to be here, because it’s Memorial Day.” And no doubt Lt. Col. North was taken by the eagle, globe and anchor on the pistol’s slide.
Mantegna said, “It’s a real honor for me to be represented in this museum … with a ‘Criminal Minds’ gun on exhibit.” He added, “The Second Amendment is for every citizen of the United States; it is one of the most important freedoms we have in this country.”
NRA Museums Senior Curator Phil Schreier said it was an honor to have both Mantegna and Lt.-Col. North open this newly updated "Hollywood Guns Redux” exhibit in the William B. Ruger, Jr., Gallery. “And it is on the 20th anniversary of when the National Firearms Museum was opened by NRA President Charlton Heston,” he noted.
Included in the revised Hollywood guns exhibit are what Mark Keefe calls the "Get off my lawn" and "You're gonna need a bigger boat" M1 Garands.
The exhibit, which features about 100 guns, was completely revised and a number of new guns added—including the M1 Garand rifles used in “Gran Torino” and “Jaws.” I call them the “Get off my lawn” and “You’re gonna need a bigger boat” Garands.
The NRA National Firearms Museum in Fairfax, Va., has 15 galleries with 85 exhibit cases housing 3,000 firearms in a 15,000 sq.-ft. facility. The museum details and examines the nearly 700-year history of firearms with a special emphasis on firearms, freedom and the American experience. It is open daily (except for Christmas) from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.