October 09, 2012

Meet the Preppers: Tom Perez

"I'm prepping for a dirty bomb terrorist attack."

Native Texan Dr. Tom Perez is prepping for terrorist attacks in the form of a dirty bomb. He lives in the heart of Houston, Texas with his wife and three children. His family plans to bug out to a 700-acre compound located 300 miles from their house. It is stocked with an ample supply of food preps and weapons. They will go to any lengths to survive a Doomsday scenario, even if it means butchering a goat right in front of their children’s eyes.

Special Note From Field Producer Justine Simonson:

They say everything’s bigger in Texas, but after spending some time with Tom Perez, I will venture to say that Tom Perez might even be bigger than Texas. When you’re with Tom, you know who’s boss. What he says goes and when he says stop even the clock hands waver. Like Teddy Roosevelt, Tom speaks softly but carries a big stick and will eagerly share the history of each of his many hunting trophies.

As a field producer, my job is not only to plan and coordinate shoots, but also to keep our preppers’ morale high and their enthusiasm up during the long days we put in filming each story for Doomsday Preppers. In Tom, I found an indefatigable counterpart. At every turn, Tom was at the ready with a bigger, badder, more Texan idea than anything I could have possibly dreamed up. The man promised to deliver and boy did he ever.

Back in New York, at Doomsday Preppers HQ, we planned for the preps we would film with Tom. But I had no way of knowing how exciting this shoot would actually be. At every turn, Tom and his friends delivered jaw-dropping, action-packed scenes. From Homeland Security and Border Patrol agents testing Tom’s family’s defenses against intruders, to Tom showing us the “natural” way to bait a goat trap, to Tom’s seventeen-year-old daughter Kat’s peerless knife skills, every moment of this shoot felt like a privilege if not slightly surreal. With each take adrenaline pumped, hearts raced and, on more than one occasion, tears flowed.

Nat Geo TV App

The Nat Geo TV App

Watch your favorite National Geographic Channel shows the day after they air.

Download on the App StoreGet it on Google Play