Logistics Marines perfect field communications
CAMP FOSTER, Okinawa, Japan -- Marines with Combat Logistics Battalion 4 are conducting a communications exercise Jan. 7 - Feb. 1 at Camp Foster.
The exercise helps prepare the unit for future operations throughout the region.
“What we are doing here today is preparing to support future exercises and operations 3rd Marine Logistics Group is involved with,” said 2nd Lt. Duc M. Pham, communications officer with Combat Logistics Battalion 4, Combat Logistics Regiment 3, 3rd MLG, III Marine Expeditionary Force. “Everything we do here today, will prepare us to provide support no matter the location or environment in this region.”
The exercise is critical for the Marines and helps them see the bigger picture, according to Pham.
“I want my Marines to see the broader picture of support and what we do in communications,” said Pham. “With exercises like these, everyone gets to see what others are doing and it becomes a much bigger team effort.”
The exercise involves many moving parts and requires constant communication and teamwork to be successful, according to Pham. Rehearsing tasks such as setting up field radio operations and installing communications assets to command posts are critical since communications are one of the first assets Marines operating in an expeditionary environment need.
The CLB-4 Marines conducted their duties for a portion of the training in full mission oriented protective posture gear.
Wearing the gear helped the Marines gain operational proficiency in continuing mission-essential tasks while in a simulated environment contaminated by chemical, biological, radiological or nuclear elements.
“The purpose of this is to show the Marines that we train how we fight,” said Staff Sgt. Leon R. Hatcher, a supply administration and operations specialist with the battalion. “We conducted our training today in different levels of MOPP gear, which will prepare the Marines for when we do go into the field.”
Not only does the training prepare the unit as a whole, but it also shows the newer Marines what to expect outside of a garrison setting and how a unit operates in a field environment.
“I think this exercise is great for the newer Marines in order to give them the hands-on-training they need to get them prepared for when we go into the field,” said Lance Cpl. Jaleesa J. Collins, a field radio operator with the battalion. “It also serves as refresher and sustainment training for the Marines who have been here longer.”
Because of this exercise, the Marines are now confident in their skills and are sure they can provide critical communication, command and control, according to Pham.
“It is good for the Marines to see how the exercises work here in Okinawa,” said Pham “Our work here is critical, and without us, there would be no command and control.”