Photo Information

U.S. Marines with Battalion Landing Team (BLT) 1st Battalion, 6th Marine Regiment, 22nd Marine Expeditionary Unit’s (MEU) light armored reconnaissance company raid a compound during a motorized raid course at Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune, N.C., Aug. 20, 2013. Approximately 120 Marines in more than 20 light armored vehicles worked alongside Alpha Co., BLT 1/6, during the weeklong field exercise. The MEU is scheduled to deploy in early 2014 to the U.S. 5th and 6th Fleet areas of responsibility with the Bataan Amphibious Ready Group as a sea-based, expeditionary crisis response force capable of conducting amphibious missions across the full range of military operations. (U.S. Marine Corps photo by Sgt. Austin Hazard/Released)

Photo by Sgt. Austin Hazard

22nd MEU LAR Marines complete motorized raid course

22 Aug 2013 | Sgt. Austin Hazard

Battalion Landing Team (BLT) 1st Battalion, 6th Marine Regiment, 22nd Marine Expeditionary Unit’s (MEU) light armored reconnaissance (LAR) company completed a motorized raid course at Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune, N.C., Aug. 22, 2013.

 

More than 120 Marines in more than 20 light armored vehicles (LAVs) worked alongside Alpha Company, BLT 1/6, during the weeklong field exercise.

 

“The purpose of this course is to give the company a chance to establish its standard operating procedures,” said U.S. Marine Corps Sgt. John Moseley, LAR company master gunner and native of Dallas. “This is also our first chance as a company to work with 1/6 and a chance for the battalion to learn how to use us as an isolation force.”

 

As a BLT asset, the LAR company is designed to push ahead of the battalion and create blockades to isolate enemy threats and control the flow of battle.

 

Within the company, nearly every LAV has a team of infantrymen used as scouts. These scout teams are small, similar to individual fire teams, and provide security for the vehicles, scouting ahead and securing areas by foot as needed. The rest of the company is composed primarily of LAV drivers, machine gunners and vehicle commanders.

 

The specialized nature of the course offered the company more relevant training, which conventional training often lacks due to LAR’s unique mission and composition.

 

“A lot of instructors don’t really understand us or know exactly how we’re supposed to operate, but this course and these instructors are really helping us evaluate ourselves,” said Lance Cpl. Ryder Johnston, LAV driver and native of Lorton, Va. “It’s taught us to be aggressive when hitting a building and how to fine tune our procedures.”

 

Throughout the week, Special Operations Training Group (SOTG) instructors evaluated the LAR company’s planning and execution of two day raids and one night raid on various targets.

 

“With this training, we’re starting to see that task organization and how we’ll work into the MEU’s operations,” said Moseley.

 

The course also served to help reintegrate the company with itself.

 

“This is the point where we’re finding that scout-to-crew integration and platoon-to-company integration,” said 1st Lt. Ryan Feeney, company executive officer and native of Castro Valley, Calif. “With SOTG instructors running the course, our platoon sergeants and platoon commanders can get involved and get trained instead of staying back and evaluating.”

 

For the course’s final day and night raids, the Marines assaulted two large compounds filled with enemy role players. Equipped with blank ammunition, both Marines and LAVs cleared their objectives and provided medical evacuations for simulated casualties as needed.

 

“It’s taught us what we’re bad at and what we’re good at,” said Johnston. “It shows us where we stand.”

 

“I want them to have the baseline of expectations of the MEU and better understand the planning process involved with its operations,” said Feeney.

 

The MEU’s deployment will take it to the U.S. 5th and 6th Fleet areas of responsibility with the Bataan Amphibious Ready Group as a sea-based, expeditionary crisis response force capable of conducting amphibious missions across the full range of military operations.


22nd Marine Expeditionary Unit