CAMP HANSEN, Okinawa, Japan --
Being combat ready in any clime and place makes the Marine Corps the United States’ ultimate commodity in war. The Marines of 3rd Marine Logistics Group conducted a command post exercise, in the Central Training Area, Kin Blue and Ie Shima Island in Okinawa, Nov. 29 - Dec. 16, 2016, to test the combat efficiency of 3rd MLG.
Staff Sgt. Doug Copeland, a motor transportation maintenance chief with 3rd MLG, III Marine Expeditionary Force, has deployed to Iraq twice and Afghanistan once in support of multiple operations. Copeland said the challenges he faced while deployed remind him of why training is important.
On Ie Shima Island, Marines practiced patrolling fundamentals, hand and arm signals, formations and immediate responses to an imminent threat.
“I noticed that my heart rate will pick up when things like this start going down,” said Copeland, a native of Lee’ s Summit, Missouri. “There is a reality behind this even though the scenario is not real.”
On Kin Blue Beach, a coastline-jungle environment, the focus was more on the occupation of an area during wartime. The Marines there developed communications and maintained the flow of supplies to prepare for a wartime scenario.
Cpl. Ruben Chagoya, a supply administrator with 3rd MLG, said he spoke to multiple other higher-ranking Marines about how this kind of training prepares Marines for combat.
“It’s crucial that we’re prepared and we know what we’re doing,” said Chagoya, a native of Gypsum, Colorado. “If I were to get deployed now, I would know what to do and have confidence in myself.”