Communications hub key to exercise success

Communications hub key to exercise success

by Lance Cpl. David N. Hersey
Okinawa Marine Staff

Camp Kinser, Okinawa, Japan -- Communication is one of the most vital aspects of military success, ensuring orders are received on time, troop movements are organized, and exercises are executed in a timely manner.

Marines with Communications Company, Combat Logistics Regiment 37, established a command operations center Feb. 7-17 at Camp Kinser in support of operation Key Resolve.

The Marines assigned to the company are charged with establishing and maintaining communication between the units they support, according to Master Gunnery Sgt. Ellanzo W. Higginson II, the communications chief for Comm. Co., CLR-37, 3rd Marine Logistics Group, III Marine Expeditionary Force.

“We provide direct communications support for the 3rd MLG commanding general through the military exercises 3rd MLG participates in,” said Higginson. “We do this by establishing a command operations center where the unit commanders can plan and communicate with other units.”

Since the start of 2014, the company has been hard at work. The Marines are currently preparing for the upcoming exercise Key Resolve, a combined exercise in the Republic of Korea involving U.S. and ROK Marines training together and reaffirming the alliance between the two nations, according to 1st Lt. Cody Chenoweth, the operations officer with the company.

“When we are involved in an exercise, we send a detachment of Marines out to the site at least two weeks early to establish a point of command,” said Chenoweth. “We send somewhere between 60-80 Marines for the central hub, and any detachment in the field will have around 2-4 of our Marines assigned to them to take care of the communications.”

Following the completion of the main command structure, Comm. Co. began establishing the communications infrastructure and necessary satellite services Feb. 11. Verification for the services they provide was achieved by Feb. 17.

For the Marines in the company, the sense of responsibility brought by their work serves as a motivating factor and a way to ensure they stay efficient, according to Cpl. Brett A. Fyse, a field radio operator with the unit.

“We have extra equipment just in case there is an issue,” said Fyse. “We have an operable replacement ready for use. What we do is a huge responsibility. If the gear we have out there is not operational, the units we are supporting will not be able to communicate efficiently.”

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