Spouses experience day in Marines' boots
CAMP HANSEN -- Running a combat fitness test, practicing Marine Corps martial arts program techniques, and navigating an obstacle course are common training events for Marines. But during the 3rd Marine Logistics Group's annual Jane Wayne day at Camp Hansen Sept. 21, it was the Marines' spouses who stepped up to take part in these events.
The spouses experienced firsthand the various Marine Corps skills their significant others perform regularly.
"We did a modified (CFT), a modified obstacle course and some MCMAP," said Joanne K. Baldwin, wife of Lt. Col. Scott A. Baldwin, battalion commander, 9th Engineer Support Battalion, 3rd MLG, III Marine Expeditionary Force. "I have participated in two other Jane Wayne days, but this one was the most physically demanding. The others I have been to usually have only one physical event and a live-fire range."
This year's event was designed to help Marine spouses experience the challenge Marines face when attempting to perform at a high level physically while fatigued from previous events, according to Kara A. Walton, the family readiness officer for 9th ESB.
"This is a hands-on event. You really get a feel for how exhausting this training is," said Walton. "After going through the different events here, I have more respect for when my husband just wants to relax on the couch after running a CFT or is sore from MCMAP."
The events of a Jane Wayne day also promote camaraderie on multiple levels, according to Baldwin.
"(Jane Wayne day) really encompasses a lot of areas," said Baldwin. "First off, it brings the spouses together and enables them to (form) relationships with other spouses from the unit and helps bond the unit together. Secondly, it gives (wives) a greater appreciation for what (their) husbands do. It also helps foster relationships between the units supporting the event."
The physical activities of this year's event were fun not only for the spouses, but also for the Marines who volunteered, according to Gunnery Sgt. Osvaldo A. Perez, the training and operations chief for 3rd Supply Battalion, Combat Logistics Regiment 35, 3rd MLG.
"Every Marine knows what the obstacle course and CFT are because they have performed both," said Perez. "The spouses have not, and the Marines are enjoying the opportunity to demonstrate each obstacle and event for the spouses. Personally, I am looking forward to being able to see my wife run the CFT. She served in the U.S. Army for seven years, so I want to see how she does during a Marine Corps fitness test."
At the end of the day, certificates were awarded and despite being tired and sore from the challenges faced, laughter was shared by all involved.
"These spouses are tough," said Walton. "They were able to go out and perform each of the events. Some of them were even able to complete the CFT lane in less than two minutes. I hope next year we have an even bigger turnout. Jane Wayne day is an awesome experience and should not be missed."