Photo Information

U.S. Marines and Sailors with Marine Rotational Force – Darwin 24.3 prepare to embark on HMAS Adelaide (L01) at Larrakeyah Defence Precinct, Darwin, NT, Australia, June 2, 2024. Marines and Sailors embarked on HMAS Adelaide (L01) alongside their Australian Allies to participate in the Wet and Dry Exercise Rehearsal, transiting from Darwin to Townsville from June 2-20, 2024. During WADER, elements from the MRF-D Marine Air-Ground Task Force will conduct MV-22B Osprey deck landing qualifications, a live-fire deck shoot, medical subject matter expert exchanges, enhance amphibious fires, command and control, and initiate a ship-to-shore movement in order to set conditions for future operational tasking. (U.S. Marine Corps photo by Gunnery Sgt. Kassie McDole)

Photo by Gunnery Sgt. Kassie McDole

MRF-D 24.3 U.S. Marines, Sailors embark Australian HMAS Adelaide for Wet and Dry Exercise Rehearsal

4 Jun 2024 | Gunnery Sgt. Kassie McDole Marine Rotational Force - Darwin

U.S. Marines and Sailors with Marine Rotational Force – Darwin (MRF-D) 24.3 Marine Air-Ground Task Force (MAGTF) embarked on HMAS Adelaide (L01) alongside their Australian Allies to participate in the Wet and Dry Exercise Rehearsal (WADER), transiting from Port Darwin to Port Townsville from June 2-20, 2024.

The WADER exercise will see MRF-D 24.3 Marines and Sailors working closely with the Australian Defence Force (ADF) to conduct a series of training activities designed to enhance joint operational capabilities. The early stages of WADER include MV-22B Osprey deck landing qualifications executed by Marine Medium Tiltrotor Squadron 268 (Reinforced), and a Combat Marksmanship Program live-fire deck shoot conducted by Marines with 2nd Battalion, 5th Marine Regiment (Reinforced).

"Embarking aboard HMAS Adelaide for the WADER exercise is a significant opportunity for our forces to demonstrate and enhance our amphibious capabilities," stated U.S. Marine Corps Col. Brian T. Mulvihill, commanding officer of MRF-D 24.3 MAGTF. "This exercise not only strengthens our operational readiness, but also reinforces the strong partnership between U.S. and Australian forces, ensuring we are prepared to respond to regional crises together."

As part of the exercise, MAGTF Marines and Sailors will debark at Townsville pier, followed by U.S. Navy medical subject matter expert exchanges with ADF medical personnel aboard HMAS Adelaide. These exchanges will cover various aspects of operational health support, including Role 1 care, triage, mass casualty planning, walking blood bank, surgical care, and en route care.

On June 15, the ADF will initiate a ship-to-shore movement using landing craft, incorporating vehicles and logistics personnel from Combat Logistics Battalion 5 (Reinforced), further demonstrating the seamless integration between U.S. and Australian forces.

“It’s great to have our friends and allies onboard again,” said Royal Australian Navy Capt. Troy Duggan, the commanding officer HMAS Adelaide (LO1). “This is a great experience for my crew to learn from them, interact, share stories and create new friendships.”

The culmination of WADER will see the standard operating procedures codified to facilitate future interoperability between MRF-D and ADF, strengthening the regional alliance between the two forces and enhancing amphibious interoperability in the Indo-Pacific.

Marine Rotational Force - Darwin is a rotational deployment of U.S. Marines to Darwin, Australia, aimed at enhancing regional security and stability, fostering closer U.S.-Australia defense ties, and ensuring that both forces are capable of rapidly responding to crises in the Indo-Pacific region.

I Marine Expeditionary Force