MARINE CORPS BASE CAMP LEJEUNE, NC --
The skies above Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune flooded with CH-53 Super Stallions and MV-22 Osprey aircraft as Marines from elements throughout the 2nd Marine Division (MARDIV) and 2nd Marine Aircraft Wing participated in an air insertion marking the beginning of Exercise Deep Water, July 29, 2020.
Exercise Deep Water is a large-scale training event aimed to advance Marine Air-Ground Task Force (MAGTF) capabilities. The goal is to increase combat effectiveness while maneuvering as a MAGTF. Last year the 8th Marine Regiment conducted Exercise Steel Pike – a battalion air assault dubbed the largest air assault on Camp Lejeune in more than a decade. The insertion for Exercise Deep Water was almost double the size of that.
“There are a lot of units participating,” said Lt. Col. Patrick V. Lavoie, the operations officer with 2d Marine Regiment, 2d Marine Division. “(This) makes the whole exercise difficult, yet extremely beneficial.”
The exercise puts more than 1,000 Marines and sailors in a realistic training scenario, allowing them to work together as a MAGTF capable of rapidly surging into an area of operations and execute in the presence of a peer-level threat.
“With Marine air serving as part of a robust team that incorporates every element of the MAGTF, this exercise provides an opportunity to display the unparalleled lethality of a well-orchestrated Marine fighting force,” said Col. Brian Coyne, commanding officer of 2d Marine Regiment, 2d MARDIV.
As the world navigates through the COVID-19 situation, Marines continue to train and view the challenges posed as an opportunity to increase readiness by developing methods to continue to train amidst restrictions.
“Accepting and embracing the challenge of such a complex event in these trying times is a reflection of our unit’s commitment to remaining prepared for major combat operations or unexpected contingency operations,” said Coyne. “The visible enhancement of 2d Regiment’s combat readiness during Deep Water will assure the world that the Marine Corps is always ready.”
Coyne stands with pride when speaking about the Marines of 2d Marine Regiment. He is confident the exercise will provide a unique opportunity to increase readiness and mission accomplishment.
“This training event will improve our warfighting proficiency and prepare us for tomorrow’s battles,” said Coyne. “I am confident we will prevail.”
Exercise Deep Water is scheduled to continue through August 6.