MARINE CORPS BASE CAMP LEJEUNE, N.C. --
Marines with 1st Brigade Platoon, 2nd Air Naval Gunfire Liaison Company, 2nd Marine Expeditionary Force, conducted training alongside Army soldiers with 1st Brigade Combat Team, 82nd Airborne Division, during the Walk and Shoot training exercise aboard Army Base Fort Bragg, N.C., Aug. 15 -19.
The exercise began with a week of fire-and-maneuver simulations along with development and planning for the following week’s live-fire training. The second week was live fire and walkthrough during which Marines worked alongside soldiers to control artillery and air support.
“We don’t get to do a lot of call for fire, so going out to Fort Bragg allowed us to brush up on our call for fire procedures and techniques,” said Sgt. Bradley Smith, fire support man, 1st brigade platoon, 2nd ANGLICO. “It also gave our newer Marines a chance to learn how to deal with using both air and artillery assets.”
Many of the Marines had never been able to conduct live fire training to call for fire prior to arriving aboard Ft. Bragg.
“I actually did my first live call for fire mission while we were there,” said Lance Cpl. Arnold Cabral, field radio operator, 1st Brigade Platoon. It was a huge confidence boost and great training!”
Throughout the training, the Marines were the fire and support for the Army’s 82nd Airborne. For many of the Marines this was their first opportunity to work alongside soldiers.
“This training gave us a chance to work with the Army for the first time, which is extremely important because we may be working alongside them while deployed,” said Capt. Jared Stokes, firepower control team leader, 1st Brigade Platoon. “Learning how they operate and how we can best work together now can only help us have better cohesion when we work with them in the fight.”
Despite the difficulties of learning to overcome the differences between the 82nd Airborne and themselves, the Marines were able to gain a lot of knowledge about how the Army operates as well as showcase ANGLICO’s capabilities with air and artillery support.
“Once we established ourselves and grasped how the army operated, things took off and it was awesome to watch us both work together,” said Stokes.