Photo Information

Lance Cpl. Vernon K. Akina, a food service specialist with 3rd Battalion, 1st Marine Regiment, marks a notional improvised explosive device while Lance Cpl. Nicholas A. Weissgerber, a compact metal detector instructor with 3rd Combat Engineer Battalion, watches during IED lane training at Camp Dwyer, Helmand province, Afghanistan, April 24. Akina located the notional IED with a compact metal detector during the practical application portion of reception staging, onward movement and integration training and integration training.

Photo by Lance Cpl. Benjamin Crilly

Thundering Third arrives, trains to take over operations in Afghanistan

28 Apr 2010 | Lance Cpl. Benjamin Crilly

Marines and sailors of 3rd Battalion, 1st Marine Regiment hit the ground running with Reception, Staging, Onward movement and Integration training here April 24-25.

Throughout the training, elements of the Thundering Third received an array of classes and conducted practical application directly related to their area of operations.

According to the US Army Transportation School webpage, “RSO&I consists of those essential and interrelated processes in the AO; required to transform arriving personnel and materiel into forces capable of meeting operational requirements.”

Despite the fact that the Marines may have had similar training while stateside as part of their pre-deployment training package, these classes are derived from operations conducted by and the experiences of those Marines who they relieve. With this core foundation, Marines learned what worked or did not work for their predecessors, the Marines of 2nd Battalion, 2nd Marines, and how to conduct future operations.

With the knowledge from these classes, the Thundering Third becomes a force both equipped and capable of overcoming the demanding challenges they face in Garmsir District, Helmand province, Afghanistan, said 1st Lt. Eric V. Kjono, the commanding officer of Headquarters and Service Company, 3/1.

Since this training is current and area specific, Marines need these classes so they will be able to develop new tactics, techniques and procedures for their Afghanistan mission, said Sgt. Chase P. Sheda, the noncommissioned officer in charge of the Camp Dehli detainee facility with H&S Co., 3/1.

The battalion will be conducting combined operations with the Afghan National Army as much as possible to strengthen the local infrastructure, therefore it is important that Marines safely employ TTPs to protect themselves, their Afghan counterparts and minimize collateral damage, said Kjono from Ramona, Calif.

“Knowing the material from RSO&I will save lives,” said Sheda from Estherville, Iowa.  

Armed with this newly acquired knowledge, the Thundering Third is prepared to roll into their area of operations being both safe and successful as they work closely with Afghan forces to create a secure environment for the Afghan people.