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DesertDispatch.com
  • MILITARY

    Marine unit conducts exercise at sports park

    Part of larger traning operation involving sites in California and Arizona
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  • BARSTOW — U.S. Marines from the 15th Marine Expeditionary Unit from Camp Pendleton conducted a non-combatant evacuation operation training exercise at Robert A. Sessions Memorial Sports Park reportedly at round 3:45 p.m. on Monday.
    Staff Sgt. Bobbie Curtis, media communications chief at Camp Pendleton, said the purpose of the exercise was to provide the 15th Marine Expeditionary Unit the opportunity to conduct training in unfamiliar environments during the final phase of their pre-deployment program. During the certified exercise, the unit was required to conduct a series of challenging and realistic training events to test their ability to conduct conventional and specialized missions.
    The Expeditionary Operations Training Group was in charge of the exercise, according to a notice of the exercise that was sent to city and law enforcement officials. The exercise was to be conducted off federal property to provide realistic military training.
    According to the notice, the unit would insert personnel by helicopter, set security, screen and process evacuees and extract all personnel by helicopter. Curtis said the evacuees were U.S. Marine actors.
    According to a media advisory provided by Curtis, The Expeditionary Operations Training Group will evaluate the unit’s ability to provide a flexible sea-based Marine air ground task force capable of conducting amphibious operations, crisis response and limited contingency operations.
    Training was scheduled to occur in San Pedro April last weekend, Yavapai County, Ariz., Blythe, Prescott, Ariz., Tuesday through Thursday and offshore of California, April 9 through Friday. The advisory said military aircraft and an increase in noise may be noticed around these areas, but no live-fire training will take place near any of these populated areas.
    The exercise, according to the advisory, provides the unit the opportunity to conduct training in unfamiliar environments during the final phase of their pre-deployment program. During the evaluation, the unit will be required to conduct a series of challenging and realistic training events to test their ability to conduct conventional and specialized missions.
    The unit is comprised of approximately 2,500 Marines and sailors from the southern California region. The advisory said the unit is built around an infantry battalion with air and combat service support, and it provides a force that can quickly respond to a variety of contingencies and military operations all while continuing to strengthen international relationships though joint security and stability training.
    Mike Lamb can be reached at 760-256-4124 or mlamb@desertdispatch.com. You can also follow him on Twitter@mlambdispatch.