MARINE CORPS OUTLYING FIELD CAMP DAVIS, N.C. --
The leathernecks of Marine Wing Communications Squadron 28 engaged in a field training exercise at Marine Corps Outlying Field Camp Davis, N.C., Aug. 18-27.
The training focused on testing different methods of field communication and the tactics used to achieve successful communication techniques when deployed. The exercise required communications Marines to demonstrate their ability to perform their jobs correctly in the field.
“This training is vital to the mission of the entire II Marine Expeditionary Force,” said Master Gunnery Sgt. William L. Johnson, communications chief for MWCS-28. “The Marines need to exercise command and control over the communications nodes before deployment.”
Marines with Company B, MWCS-28, such as Pfc. Weston R. Britt and Lance Cpl. Alex K. Arnston, were responsible for operating the Lightweight Multi-Band Satellite Terminals used during the exercise. Arnston, a ground mobile forces operator who led his team during the exercise, explained his team’s responsibilities.
“We are mainly responsible for troubleshooting anything that happens with our satellite equipment,” said Arnston. “Along with troubleshooting we maintain and monitor power levels and make sure communication is maintained at all times.”
Throughout the exercise, Marines here used internet connections sent from the U.S. Army installation at Fort Bragg, N.C., Britt explained. First-time field training exercise participant and field radio operator Pfc. Derek Moreno spoke highly about the experience and training environment.
“I really like this training environment,” Moreno said. “I have learned about a lot of new equipment and it’s very surprising how we can communicate with others so far away by only using radios.”
Lance Cpl. Jamee M. McWhirt, a field radio operator with MWCS-28, said the training was a much needed refresher following a year she spent deployed to Afghanistan.
“I spent a year working as a field wireman, which is outside my military occupational specialty field,” said McWhirt. “I feel like, with this training, I’m more prepared for potential deployment in my MOS.” Johnson said this is one of many exercises to come to train MEF Marines for future deployments.