Tagged: staff military

jim rivera

Jim Rivera getting ready to ship out.

Famous Smoke Shop Sales Agent: Jim Rivera

Position At Famous: Sales Agent

Service Branch: U.S. Navy

Rank attained: HM3

Location(s) where stationed: Great Lakes IL , Norfolk VA, Phila. PA, Charelston SC

Name of unit: Philadelphia Naval Hospital

Name of ship and mission/area of operations: USS Detroit AOE4, USS Frank Cable AS-40 > Medical

About Jim’s military experience: 

During my teen years I was a major beach bum and have always been fascinated with the sea, so I joined the U.S. Navy, where I served for 4 years as a hospital corpsman. It allowed me to meet people from all walks of life and was perhaps the greatest social education I’ve ever received. At the time I did not smoke cigars; that came later.

About Jim’s cigar smoking habits:

Like many cigar smokers, I started out with mild cigars and eventually developed a palate for medium to full strength through the years depending on the cigar and  time of day. My everyday smoke is a Rocky Patel Rosado or Fonseca Series F; during the weekend it’s a Hemingway Best Seller or Ashton Virgin Sun Grown.

Why Jim loves his job:

As a Sales Agent at Famous Smoke Shop I get to speak with customers from all over the country, and enjoy assisting them while I take their orders. I also like offering them suggestions on cigars I believe they would enjoy, it gives me a lot of satisfaction to help a cigar lover find a new favorite smoke.

Bruce Martin - Cigars For Warriors

Name: Bruce Martin

Position at Famous:  Web Developer

Service Branch: Army

Rank attained: Specialist

Years of service: 1987 – 1991

Location(s) where stationed: Ft. Leonard Wood, MO, Huntsville, AL, Grafenwöhr, Germany, Ft. Lewis WA

Name of unit: 574th Ord Co.

About Bruce’s military service:

It was only after getting to Basic Training; I learned I had another name. Fred. Yes, as proof that all soldiers are the same no matter where we came from. We had to learn we were one unit, one force and no different from the soldier next to you, “Fred”, the soldier on the right is no different than “Fred” the soldier on the left of you.

About Bruce’s role at Famous and his smoking habits:

I develop backend code for the family of websites run by Famous-Smoke Shop. I’m A former cigarette smoker, and I now occasionally enjoy the infusion of flavors from Tabak Especiale, Tatiana, and Acid cigars.

Why Bruce loves his job:

The challenge. Never running from a challenge, I enjoy facing them head on, resolving the impediments to accomplish the goal. There is never a lack of challenges, making each day more interesting than the last.


Name: Brian Dierks

Position at Famous: Web Developer

Service Branch: U.S. Navy

Rank attained: ATI-2 (E-5)

Years of service:  1987 – 1994

Location(s) where stationed: N.A.S. Whidbey Island, WA

Name of unit:

Aircraft Intermediate Maintenance Department (A.I.M.D) Sea Operational Detachment (S.O.D.) W/C 64B attached to

U.S.S. Forrestal CV-59 (primary)

U.S.S. Theodore Roosevelt CVN-71

U.S.S. Abraham Lincoln CVN-72

Name of ship and mission/area of operations: 6th Fleet Operation Desert Storm

About Brian’s military service:

Since leaving the Navy, Brian's busy schedule of web coding and rocking out has prevented him from finding a new barber shop.

Since leaving the Navy, Brian’s busy schedule of web coding and rocking out has prevented him from finding a new barber shop.

My first encounter with discounted tobacco products was when we got 12 miles off the coast and the ship’s smoke shop opened. While civilians on land were paying $2 for a pack of smokes, we were paying $.75… suckers! We would go grab some Swisher Sweets, shoot pool, smoke and drink all night. We weren’t very well versed in cigars back then, and it’s not like there were premium cigars available at the Exchange.

About Brian’s role at Famous and his smoking habits:

After coming on board here at Famous way back in ’12 as a web developer,  I was able to try out some premium cigars. I have found that I prefer mild to medium robustos, and my favorite is the Perdomo 10th Anniversary Champagne. I also enjoy the CAO Potomac and the Alec Bradley American Classic Blend Robusto.

Why Brian loves his job:

Working here at Famous Smoke-Shop has been a pleasure compared to some other places I’ve worked – I mean, now-a-days, how many places will let you enjoy a cigar while sitting at your desk building the web pages that bring people such fantastic discounts?

ryan alin staff military

In addition to his brave service and slick web coding skills, Ryan built this section of the site that you’re browsing right now!

ryan alin famous military

Ryan enjoying a fine cigar after a hard day’s coding.

Name: Ryan Alin

Position at Famous: Web Developer

Service Branch: US Army Infantry

Rank attained: Specialist (E-4)

Years of service: 1996 – 2000

Name of unit: HHC 2/8 Inf, 4th ID

About Ryan’s military service:

For me, cigar smoking in the Service was a way to relax when the entire rest of your world was crazy. When you didn’t know where you were going, or what you would be doing, or when you would get back from doing it, you could bring a few sticks with you and know that you had a few hours of relaxation stashed in your ruck. When you were in a desert, or a jungle, or some backwoods training ground with no way to connect to home, you could close your eyes, light up a cigar and for just a moment pretend you weren’t deep in the thick of it doing things you would rather not be doing, and pretend that all was right in the world again.

About Ryan’s role at Famous Smoke Shop and his smoking habits:field2

I’m a Front-End Web Developer here at Famous, which means I get to make the pretty interactive bits that let people like myself buy the cigars I love to smoke, which is really a win/win scenario for me. I’m a two to three a day cigar smoker and I prefer medium to full-bodied smokes. A glass of scotch and a cigar out by the fire pit sounds like a perfect evening to me.

Why Ryan loves his job:

I love working at Famous because the people here quickly became like family. It’s a company that I am proud to be a part of. I get to do the two things I love to do: web development and cigar smoking, and I get to do them for the company that provided me with my cigars before I worked here. From the ownership to the management to all of the employees, you can feel the love for the pastime and the cigar smoking industry.

ed bearby famous veteran

Ed is the Team Lead of Famous’s Guest Services department, helping customers to find the right cigars and accessories.

Name: Ed Bearby

Position at Famous:  Sales Team Supervisor

Service Branch: U.S. Navy

Rank attained: Chief Petty Officer

Years of service: 1962 – 1976

Location(s) where stationed: Various Sea and Land Stations

Name of unit: CAG-30

Name of ship and mission/area of operations: Pacific Fleet


About Ed’s military service:

As a young sailor I worked for a Chief Petty Officer who was always walking around with a stogie in his mouth. As time went on and I advanced in rank, he finally took me under his wing and introduced me to cigar smoking. We used to sit outside the club, drink a few beers and smoke whatever cigars we could get our hands on. I don’t believe I ever smoked a true premium cigar until later in life.

About Ed’s role at Famous Smoke Shop and his smoking habits:

My role at Famous is as the Team Leader of our “Guest Services Sales” team. We handle the inbound sales calls and assist our customers in the selection of cigars and accessories. I am a social cigar smoker who enjoys a quality cigar with a cocktail or just sitting outside on the deck with a couple of friends. I prefer cigars from Drew Estate but I also enjoy many other brands. My co-workers here at Famous are always introducing me to new brands, and I will normally purchase a 5 or 10 cigar sampler just to try even more untried brands. Among them all, I have only found one that I really did not enjoy.

Why Ed loves his job:

The staff here at Famous Smoke Shop create a very friendly work environment, that makes coming to work every day an enjoyable experience. Dealing with our customers is one of the most pleasant experiences, since cigar smokers are generally very pleasant and want to talk to someone who can assist them or just talk to them about cigars in general. So, being a cigar smoker is a great asset when talking with our customers.