MARINE CORPS BASE CAMP LEJEUNE, N.C. -- For the Marines of 2nd Battalion, 6th Marine Regiment, you can’t mention Nuclear Biological Chemical training without thinking of Cpl. Anthony J. Cress.
When the Second Marine Regiment started the NBC schoolhouse and held their first course, Cress was one of the Marines on hand as an instructor, preparing Marines for deployment to Operation Iraqi Freedom.
“Since some of my Marines were here, this was where I wanted to be,” the Frankford, Del., native said. “I wanted to be involved. I can take this training back to my unit and push it.”
Cress attended Sussex Technical High School from 1998 through 2001, where he played on the soccer team. The 21-year also led his school as captain of the winter, spring and cross-country track teams.
Now as a NBC chief with the battalion, Cress leads a new teams with the goal of training Marines to protect and defend themselves if hit with a chemical attack. He used the new schoolhouse as a stepping-stone to accomplish this.
“The training is necessary because our Marines need to be prepared for NBC warfare and be proficient in NBC knowledge and gear,” Cress said.”
Not only is NBC training important before deploying to combat zones, it’s also a requirement. As an instructor, the small red-haired Marine had an open and helpful personality, which he used as his device to train Marines.
He used those qualities along with natural leadership skills to help instruct the new schoolhouse’s five-day course in monitor survey decontamination. A course in which he helped cover chemical biological nuclear defense; radiological and chemical logical monitor and survey operations; and contaminated casualty and operation decontamination.
The next class the “schoolhouse” teaches will be on decontamination and triage of contaminated casualties. Cress plans to be there with the same open and helpful personality, keeping NBC training in the forefront of his battalion.