Photo Information

Gunnery Sgt. Matthew P. Rea, 34, platoon sergeant with the light armored reconnaissance section, BLT 3/1, 11th Marine Expeditionary Unit, discusses plans for a training raid with his Marines here May 25. The raid is part of a Special Operations Training Group program to prepare the Marines for their upcoming 11th MEU deployment

Photo by Cpl. Elyssa Quesada

Teams provide fire, support

25 May 2011 | Cpl. Elyssa Quesada

Combined anti-armor teams and a light-armored reconnaissance platoon took lessons from past combat operations as they brought vehicles and weapons to a five-day raid course here May 23-27.

The Weapons Company Marines from Battalion Landing Team 3/1, the ground combat element of the 11th Marine Expeditionary Unit, attended the course taught by I Marine Expeditionary Force's Special Operations Training Group.

In one simulated raid, a team provided security for a landing zone and established a support-by-fire position as Marines in light-armored vehicles maneuvered to an objective and engaged targets.

LAR platoon sergeant Gunnery Sgt.  Matthew P. Rea said such training strengthens the team, and if called to conduct a raid in the real world, the warriors will act as one.

"It's for the Marines to know how each other will act and react under fire," said Rea, 34, who hails from Encinitas, Calif.

The light armored reconnaissance vehicles carry 25mm cannons, while the humvees with CAAT carry.50 caliber machine guns, grenade launchers and tube-launched optically-tracked wire-guided missiles making them capable of destroying an array of enemy targets.

"With CAAT, Weapons Company and LAR heavy guns and anti-armor weapons, it's a lethal combination," said Sgt. Curney Russell, 26, section leader with B section, LAR.

The units will continue to train to prepare for the MEU's upcoming Western Pacific deployment.

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