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  • Jan
  • 2016
Iwakuni Marines maintain munitions

By Cpl. David Bickel, Marine Corps Air Station Iwakuni, Japan

MARINE CORPS AIR STATION IWAKUNI, Japan -- Marines from Marine Wing Support Squadron 171 geared up for small arms weapons ranges July 21. 

It can take several days to properly prepare for range operations, and every Marine, from the newest private to the most senior warrant officer, focus on practicing drills and breaking down and troubleshooting. 

Warrant Officer Matthew Hansen, MWSS-171 mobility officer, said range preparation is vital to a successful range. 

“We’re given the chance here to be able to dis-assemble and re-assemble the weapons, become familiar with them,” said Hansen. “The Marines need to not be intimidated by them…so they can employ it effectively on the range and make the most of that training time.”

Weapons preparation allows Marines to familiarize themselves with the munitions, rifles and crew served weapons they are required to use. This aids in smooth operation and safety on the range.

Private First Class Wendy Moncion, a MWSS-171 bulk fuel specialist, said safety is paramount, no matter the situation.

“You have to be safe before you do anything,” said Moncion. “You have to prep yourself. Practice makes perfect, and without the practice, you could easily hurt somebody or hurt yourself.”

Not just practice, but safe practice, is an extension of the learning process. The Marines from MWSS-171 are learning as much as they can before they hit the range.

“In order to do something you have to first know what you’re doing,” Moncion continued. “This ensures you and the people around you are safe at all times.”
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