11th MEU Marines go gunnin’ in Guam

28 Nov 2007 | Cpl. Scott M. Biscuiti

 Marines with Battalion Landing Team 1st Battalion, 5th Marine Regiment and Combat Logistics Battalion 11, 11th Marine Expeditionary Unit (SOC), spent Nov. 25-26 sharpening their infantry skills on the tropical island of Guam.

 The USS Germantown pulled into U.S. Naval Base Guam with Marines and sailors crowded around the flight deck to get their first glimpse of land since departing San Diego on Nov. 5. Once in port, the Marines wasted no time and quickly made their way to their first training site at Anderson Air Force Base.

 The focus of the two-day training was on marksmanship sustainment, enhanced marksmanship program skills, urban patrols and military operations in urban terrain, said Capt. Daniel Thomas, commanding officer, Company B, BLT 1/5.

 The Marines spent most of their time firing weapons at two live-fire ranges both during the day and night. On the second day, the Marines went to an empty housing area that allowed them to occupy the area, conduct urban patrols and cordon and searches and use simulated ammunition, similar to paintballs.

 “It was an outstanding occasion to give the Marines an opportunity to use all their equipment in a dynamic fashion using ladders and breaching kits,” said Thomas, an Oakdale, La. native. “It allowed the squad leaders to exercise command and control.”

 Sgt. Joshua Debiak, 1st squad leader, 3rd platoon, Company B, said the new environment was a nice change in training.

 “Recently, we have been focused on operating in Iraq and Afghanistan,” said the Pittsburgh, Pa. native. “The tropical environment gives us a different perspective and setup than what we are used to.”

 After the Marines ran through numerous scenarios in the makeshift city during the day and night, it was time to pack up, get on the ship and head to their next destination.

 “Overall, it was a good chance for the Marines to steady their legs after almost a month on ship, see a new country and build confidence in themselves and their weapons systems,” said Thomas. “We are a force in readiness around the world and there is always a need to operate in every clime and place because our mission is global.”

Marine Corps News

Colonel Jim W. Lively
Commanding Officer

Colonel Lively is a native of Dallas, Texas. He received his commission in 1996 through the Platoon Leaders Course program after graduating from Texas A&M University with a BA in Psychology.

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Lieutenant Col. Le E. Nolan
Executive Officer

Lieutenant Colonel Nolan is a 2001 graduate of the Georgia Institute of Technology and received his commission through Officer Candidate Class 180. After completing flight training as a CH-53E pilot, he reported to HMH-361 in MCAS Miramar.

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Sergeant Major Travis L. DeBarr
Sergeant Major

Sergeant Major DeBarr enlisted in the Marine Corps and reported to MCRD San Diego, CA, for recruit training in October 1994.

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11th Marine Expeditionary Unit