Beginning in 1998 at Texas A&M TEEX, Mike Witzgall formed Charlie Mike Enterprises.
Initially, Charlie Mike was a part-time endeavour and local to the Dallas-Fort Worth area.
Since 2005, Charlie Mike conducts ten to fifteen schools a year using a cadre of over two dozen instructors nationwide.
Many people have asked me, "What does Charlie Mike mean?" Now that we have a website, this question can be answered on a much larger scale.
Paraphrased, the oath that is taken when joining our nations armed forces states in part; that we “Shall support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic and that we will bear true faith and allegiance to the same.” Many law enforcement agencies across America also include those same words in their oath when being sworn in. There is no greater charge given to an American citizen than that of safeguarding our nation. When a person leaves active duty (military or law enforcement) the responsibility – the mission – that we accepted does not end there. We carry that oath for the rest of our lives. In other words, we Continue the Mission. In the military phonetic, the letter "C" is Charlie and "M" is Mike– we Charlie-Mike!
Over the years we have received many compliments and inquiries about its design and meaning. Military buffs immediately recognize that the Knife (or a sword) is the symbol of honor and justice; the Lighting Bolts are symbolic of speed and agility and the Black Background represent the overwhelming darkness (evil) we fight against by means of stealth and cunning; but rarely by strength. Hence our motto “Occulte Non Vires” - By Stealth, Not Strength! If a person studies the crest a moment longer, they begin realize that the blade is slightly off set and appears to be out of alignment with the last few inches of the knife at the hilt. This is not a computer glitch – when it was originally drawn by my wife Shelly, she drew it exactly as I had described it. The blade of the knife is intentionally shown as broken. The broken blade is symbolic of two deeply held beliefs that I have. The first belief I have is that Americans, on a routine basis, break faith with those of us that are sworn to serve and protect them. My second belief is that even though the American people constantly fail us, we will never intentionally fail them! In other words, though we stand alone with nothing but a broken blade to fight with, we will not break our oath to protect America.
I got the idea of the broken blade from Rudyard Kipling’s poem “The Quest.” My father, a career military man and combat veteran, read this poem to me when I was a child. Back then, I did not understand how a poem written in the late 1800’s would apply to my life today; some 45 years later. In this poem Kipling describes a Knight coming home from a battle he willingly fought (and most likely lost) against overwhelming odds. He is sorely bloodied and beaten, his lance is broken and his horse – the greatest possession a knight has – is fought out and must be put down. The Knight’s sword is also broken and yet; even though his countrymen ridicule him, the Knight refuses to forsake his oath. In the last paragraph the enemy now attacks his country at home and again the scorned Knight willingly answers the warder’s call to duty. With his horse dead and with nothing but a broken blade in his hands; the Knight stands ready to fight and even though he knows the battle already is lost, he will not break faith with his country. He will, even if it means his death, continue to serve.