Remembering William Aprill and Sharing His Work

William Aprill of Aprill Risk Consulting died today. He won’t get an obituary in the New York Times (I am guessing), but his death is being mourned throughout the gun training community (it is feeling more like a community than a cottage industry, today at least).

William Aprill presenting at the 2018 Rangemaster Tactical Conference.

I didn’t know William Aprill well, but we knew of each other. I will never forget the one and only time I met him in person, at the Rangemaster Tactical Conference in 2018. Our brief conversation began:

Aprill: “Gun Culture 2.0, eh?”

Yamane: “Yep.”

Aprill: “I thought we were on Gun Culture 4.5 by now.”

Aprill was so far ahead of so many in the gun training community he may well have been on Gun Culture Version 4.5.

We chatted right before he presented an abbreviated version of his work at the Tactical Conference. Attending a full “Unthinkable” class and interviewing him about his work was at the top of my remaining book research “to do” list.

And now he is gone.

Aprill is known for his understanding of the darkest aspects of human behavior — the “criminal mind” — but I was always most impressed by his ability to understand the human mind. Speaking with Paul Carlson on his Safety Solutions Academy podcast, Aprill talked about the benefits of having a #MeToo movement for mental health. He also showed his humanity in the way he thought about the issue of race and violent victimization, which I appreciated.

I am going to remember and honor William Aprill by sharing his work in a cumulative post I will begin tomorrow. If you have links to any public resources you know of in the comments and I will add them to this post to create a repository of his contributions.

What I have so far is: Paul Carlson’s Safety Solutions Academy podcast (Ep. 440 – The Psychology of the Gun Agenda from 14 September 2018 and Ep. 444 – Mental Health and Guns from 10 October 2018).

Please help me add to this.


  1. David thank you for honoring William. He does have a DVD on Personal Defense Network. you are welcome to copies of my and my sons typed notes from Unthinkable last Fall if it helps.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. This is a big loss for all of us. William was a real thought leader and one of the very few in the industry with both impressive academic credentials and street credentials in the field of violence and self-defense. I took his Unthinkable seminar last year, mind blowing. We lost a real resource with his passing.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. He was on my “must go” list as well. My condolences to his family and I am thankful we at least live in a world where knowledge like his is recognized, appreciated, and won’t disappear with his passing.

    I’ll be voraciously waiting for the comprehensive list. No time to put things off any longer.

    Thank you Professor.


  4. Thank you for memorializing him, and especially for reproducing his cogent comment about how the criminal minority in dangerous neighborhoods are responsible for high levels of violence — and how the larger society tends to overlook this and instead ascribe the violence to the entire inner-city community.


  5. David…In my last conversation with William a couple of weeks ago his overriding concern was that his work not be lost. I have 2 comprehensive interviews with William, plus some shorter ones. We used sound bytes from these in several episodes of THE BEST DEFENSE, where William was a regular guest. We are asking Outdoor Channel/OSG to give us the rights to post those interviews. We are also going to “harvest” William’s contributions to the 10 TBD/SURVIVAL Roundtables that we did earlier this year. William’s insights were critical to the last 3 seasons of THE BEST DEFENSE, and I want to make sure those insights don’t go down the Memory Hole. Best, Michael b


  6. […] 4. Remembering William Aprill and Sharing His Work. Attending a full class with William Aprill and interviewing him about his work was at the top of my research “to do” list for some time. I did not get around to it until it was too late. Losing this opportunity was a big motivator for me to start my “Buy Me a Coffee” crowd funding initiative last fall, as well as to raise a little money and promote the brand by selling Gun Culture 2.0 t-shirts and stickers on Teespring. […]


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