SOUDA BAY, Greece --
Marines and sailors with Battalion Landing Team, 2nd Battalion, 2nd Marine Regiment, and Combat Logistics Battalion 22, both with 22nd Marine Expeditionary Unit, learned combat lifesaving skills as part of a three day bilateral training evolution with Greece’s Hellenic Army at Maleme Training Center, June 7-9, 2011.
As part of the course, Marines and Greek soldiers reviewed how to apply pressure dressings and tourniquets. For most of these Marines, it’s a refresher course on saving the lives of their fellow Marines.
“Instilling these techniques is important to treating combat casualties. Marines have proven this time and time again. They’re normally the first ones to treat casualties before a corpsman gets there,” said Petty Officer 2nd Class Robert Oldfield, a BLT corpsman. “Instilling these techniques into them is the foundation of taking care of Marines.”
Conscripted soldiers in the Hellenic Army spend a period of nine months of service, and many personnel don’t receive this specialized training.
“They don’t normally have this type of training because of their limited time in the military,” said Oldfield. “They ask a lot of questions about our techniques, how we do things, and how we teach our Marines to perform these actions, and we came together.”
The opportunity for Marines and Greek soldiers to work together was a great diplomatic exchange.
“We don’t usually train in a relaxed atmosphere like we do here,” said Reserve Officer George Michalakis with the Hellenic Army. “In this environment we learn much better.”
The Marines and sailors of the 22nd MEU are currently deployed with Amphibious Squadron 6 aboard the USS Bataan Amphibious Ready Group serving as a flexible, formidable and potent force who continues to train and improve their capability to operate as a cohesive and effective Marine Air Ground Task Force.
The 22nd MEU is a multi-mission, capable force, commanded by Col. Eric Steidl and comprised of an Aviation Combat Element, Marine Tilt Rotor Squadron 263 (Reinforced); a Logistics Combat Element, Combat Logistics Battalion 22; a Ground Combat Element, Battalion Landing Team, 2nd Battalion, 2nd Marine Regiment; and its Command Element.
Marine Expeditionary Units are the Marine Corps’ smallest permanent Marine Air-Ground Task Force, and is comprised of approximately 2,200 Marines and sailors ready to provide immediate response to a hostile environment or crisis.