About “The Prepper”

Welcome to AskThePrepper.com!

This site is dedicated to helping you prepare for disaster.  Everything from earthquakes, wildfires and hurricanes to SHTF events (shit hitting the fan) — which are extended emergencies where you may be expected to live without assistance from anyone else for a long time.

Apparently you are interested in who I am.

So who am I?  And what are my credentials?

Well let me put your mind at ease…

My name is Jason Cain.

My wife and I on a beautiful spring day hear in the Pacific Northwest…

I am just a regular American guy — sharing the shortcuts and hacks of what I have learned along this path of preparation and self-reliance.


I was a sergeant (E-5) in the United States Marine Corps, and served six years (6) on active duty (1986-1992).

I originally was enlisting in the US Army to be a Ranger, but some jarhead recruiter started telling me about Force Recon and how only pussies went in the Army.  🙂

I was homeported in Hawaii at MCAS Kaneohe Bay as part of the aviation detachment of the 1st Marine Expeditionary Brigade (1st MEB).  I was honorably discharged in 1992.

During my enlistment, I deployed a lot — every chance I got.  I volunteered for everything, so I could see and experience the world.  During my travels I spent most of my time in the Philippines and the Japan.

My MOS (Military Occupational Specialty) was CH53 helicopter communication / navigation aviation electrician.

I was trained to repair the “black boxes” in an aircraft: radios, navigation equipment, radar units, cryptographic equipment, electronic warfare equipment and automatic flight control systems.  But because the USMC is so small I had to work on anything with a wire going to it… engines, lights, landing gear, flight controls — EVERYTHING!

Aircrewman/Door Gunner

One of the opportunities that often comes up when attached to a helicopter squadron is the opportunity to become an aircrewman/door gunner or crew-chief.  I attended aircrewman training at NAS Barbers Point sometime around the end of 1988.

A German CH-53 door gunner. A great photo that shows you what a door gunner does!

Nuclear Biological Chemical (NBC) NCO

One of my collateral duties during my enlistment included Nuclear Biological Chemical (NBC) NCO for my unit and serving on the NBC survey team.

The NBC NCO of a unit is responsible for maintaining equipment, training, and supervising NBC decontamination operations.

The survey team are the Marines that are tasked with going into a suspected contaminated area and taking specimens and samples — ahead of a main force unit.  Helicopter units were (not sure about now) typically used because they could fly into and out of a suspected area limiting exposure to personnel.

A USMC survey team training. The guy on the left is using talc to determine wind direction. The guy on the right is using a sniffer or Geiger counter looking for contaminant readings… and the guy in the middle is pushing a cart with test equipment, chemical test strips, and other equipment. They are all equipped with self-contained breathing apparatus.

Survival Training

I did some specialized training in the USMC.

I was heavily involved in the Boy Scouts growing up.  So I have always had a passion for bushcraft, fieldcraft, wilderness travel and survival.

During my time in the Corps, I took courses and classes in:

  • Water Safety and Sea Survival
  • Cold Weather Survival

My biggest regret is that I never was able to attend JEST (Jungle Environment Survival Training) — despite being stationed at Cubi Point, Philippines.  Or SERE (Survival-Escape-Resistance-Evasion) School because there were so few billets available each year to our squadron.

In short my military service can be summed up:

I did more than some — but there is nothing to brag about.


I did not leave the Marine Corps willingly.

Contrary to what many people think, you can’t just automatically reenlist.  You have to apply.

The military is always in a state of flux: growing during conflicts — or in preparation for conflict — like it is now (China).  Or it is contracting during peacetime like it did in 1991, when the Berlin Wall fell and the Cold War ended.

Drastic cuts were called for by Congress and President Bush.  So in 1991, I was told by my “career planner” that I could not reenlist – despite having a spotless record – and awards and commendations for my leadership and technical abilities.

I was told one year before my EAS (end of active service) that my dreams of a career and military retirement were over — and that I would be forced out.  I was sent to a mandatory transitional “job fair” on base, and the Honolulu Police Department was there!

After leaving the Corps, I immediately began working for the Honolulu Police Department — and was in the 117th Recruit Class at Ke Kula Maka’i.

All of my time was spent in patrol in Kalihi, Kaneohe and Waikiki.  I was one of the first bike patrol officers in the department.  Spent time on the three-wheeled motorcycles in Waikiki.  And trained new recruits in patrol procedures and tactics as a Field Training Officer (FTO).

I was one of the initial officers at the Sand Island Shooting that was one of the original segments of World’s Wildest Police Shootouts.

And I was involved in the incident involving an African elephant named “Tyke” that we had to put down after it killed two trainers and escaped from the circus.  (I fucking hate circuses to this day…)


Following the Honolulu Police Department, I began working for a fantastic Fortune 50 company in Atlanta, Georgia as their Senior Corporate Security Officer.

After 9/11, I began being asked by company executives about personal security, precautions to take overseas, safe rooms, and survival bunkers.

Maybe you remember the fear…

It makes the current pandemic we are in, look extremely feeble.

With all the questions I was getting — and time I was spending helping people — I started my own consulting company on the side helping executives protect themselves and their families in case of terrorism or disaster.

My Life As A Prepper

I began my life as a prepper in 1999 with the birth of my daughter. That year it was the Y2K emergency, and because of my technical background and familiarity with computer programming, I worried what was going to happen on January 1, 2000 when the computers might not recognize the correct date.

Luckily nothing happened — because I wasn’t ready…

I had a 20 pound bag of flour that I purchased at Sam’s Club, and a 20 pound bag of rice. Even to this day, I’m not sure WTF I was thinking.  Although it greatly influenced the emergency food plan I created for emergencies.

By September 11th, I had my shit together…

September 11, the anthrax attacks of 2001, the SARS pandemic of 2002 and 2003, the H5N1 epidemic, Hurricane Katrina, and now the Covid-19 pandemic have prepared me to help you.


I grew up in Northern California and Pacific Northwest and now live in the forests and shadows of the Cascade Mountain Range where I fish, camp, hike, shoot, and contemplate life.  I get out in the bush almost every weekend.

My interest has always been the outdoors and survival — especially cold-weather survival.  In cold weather, the mountains and forests themselves are trying to kill you.  🙂

On nice days: I ride windy, country roads on an old Harley — sometimes with an ‘old lady’ on the back.

I hope you find the answers you are looking for on my site, or on my social media channels.

My grandma was born in the Ozarks and like all hillbillies she liked to cheat at dominoes while telling me stories about the Great Depression and old family history.