Photo Information

Marines with the 22nd Marine Expeditionary Unit (Special Operations Capable), Command Element engage a series of targets during one of the several training tables the Marines had to complete at the unknown distance range held at the Udairi Range Complex Sept. 18, 2007. The Marines and sailors of Command Element are currently deployed as part of the 22nd Marine Expeditionary Unit (Special Operations Capable) led by Col. Doug Stilwell. (Official Marine Corps photo by Sgt. Ezekiel R. Kitandwe) (Released)

Photo by Sgt. Ezekiel R. Kitandwe

Command Element Marines step into their element

18 Sep 2007 | Sgt. Ezekiel R. Kitandwe

A convoy of humvees and seven-ton trucks filled with Marines and sailors from the 22nd Marine Expeditionary Unit (Special Operations Capable) Command Element pace down a dusty, rock-filled trail, leaving a thick cloud of dust in their wake on the way to a remote desert training range.

According to Gunnery Sgt. Charles Phillips II, the range safety officer, the training exercise, one of many sustainment exercises the Marines will be conducting, was a chance for the Marines to prepare for the rigors of combat and practice shooting their weapons.

"The best part about shooting on the unknown-distance range is that it trains you to engage targets that pose the greatest danger to you first,"said Cpl. James McCoy-Flowers, a Marine with several deployments under his belt. "And since you don't know how far the enemy will be, this range also trains you on how to judge and effectively engage the enemy from any distance."

The training also gave Marines who typically don't get a lot of"trigger time" a chance to come out and train.

"I had fun just being able to get out in the sun,"said communications Marine Lance Cpl. Nicole Carver. It's this type of training that reminds her why she joined the Corps, she added.

The 22nd MEU(SOC) consists of its Ground Combat Element, Battalion Landing Team, 3rd Battalion, 8th Marine Regiment; Aviation Combat Element, Marine Medium Helicopter Squadron 261 (Reinforced); Logistics Combat Element, Combat Logistics Battalion 22; and its Command Element. Led by Col. Doug Stilwell, the 22nd MEU(SOC) is in Kuwait conducting sustainment training as part of a scheduled deployment.

22nd Marine Expeditionary Unit